AlgoMantra, b. 2005

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Friday, July 28, 2006
~~~~Sound ~~~~Dunes ~~~~~
I'm really beginning to like the BLDG BLOG. Which Rajasthani pink-noiz loving boy wouldn't love these sound dunes?

The transformation of a sand dune – and, by extension, the entire Sahara desert, indeed any desert – even, by extension, the rust deserts of Mars – into a musical instrument.

Music of the spheres, indeed.

"When the sand avalanches, the grains jostle each other at different frequencies, setting up standing waves in the cascading layer, says Douady. These waves reinforce one another, making the layer vibrate like the surface of a loud speaker. 'What's funny is that in these massive dunes, only a thin layer of 2 or 3 centimetres is needed to set up the resonance,' says Douady. 'Soon all grains begin to vibrate in step.'"

Douady has so perfected his technique of dune resonance that he has now "successfully predicted the notes emitted by dunes in Morocco, Chile and the US simply by measuring the size of the grains they contain." The music of the dunes, in other words, was determined entirely by the size, shape, and roughness of the sand grains involved, where excessive smoothness dampened the dunes' sound.
Words On Water

a device that uses waves to draw text and pictures on the surface of water.

The device, called AMOEBA (Advanced Multiple Organized Experimental Basin), consists of 50 water wave generators encircling a cylindrical tank 1.6 meters in diameter and 30 cm deep (about the size of a backyard kiddie pool). The wave generators move up and down in controlled motions to simultaneously produce a number of cylindrical waves that act as pixels.

Saturday, July 22, 2006
Bendito Machine
Bendito Machine by Zumbakamera. The best flash movie EVER, periodDd.

[link via Drawn]
Thursday, July 20, 2006
Behold the beauty
And what you see here is just one of the fascinating stuff out there. Go get it! Spike Walker at the Biomedical Imaging Awards:

"Microscopes have been my life since I was about ten and photomicrography since I was 12 years old, which is quite a long time," he says.
Thursday, July 13, 2006
Pink Noiz
The theory behind pink noise is very attractive as it links to self-organised criticality:

We shall see that the dynamics of a critical state has a specific temporal fingerprint, namely 'flicker noise', in which the power spectrum S(f) scales as 1/f at low frequencies. Flicker noise is characterized by correlations extended over a wide range of timescales, a clear indication of some sort of cooperative effect. Flicker noise has been observed, for example, in the light from quasars, the intensity of sunspots, the current through resistors, the sand flow in an hourglass, the flow of rivers such as the Nile, and even stock exchange price indices. Despite the ubiquity of flicker noise, its origin is not well understood. Indeed, one may say that because of its ubiquity, no proposed mechanism to data can lay claim as the single general underlying root of 1/f noise. We shall argue that flicker noise is in fact not noise but reflects the intrinsic dynamics of self-organized critical systems.

Another cool blog is here:

Walking along one day on the newly-discovered coast of Australia, Captain Cook saw an extraordinary animal leaping through the bush.
"What's that?" he asked one of the aborigines accompanying him.
"Uh - gangurru." he replied - or something like that. Captain Cook duly noted down the name of the peculiar beast as 'Kangaroo'.
Some time later, Cook had the opportunity to compare notes with Captain King, and mentioned the kangaroo.
"No, no, Cook", said King, "the word for that animal is 'meenuah' - I've checked it carefully.
"So what does 'kangaroo' mean?"
"Well, I think," said King "it probably means something like 'I don't know'..."

So ever since, the story goes, the English word 'kangaroo' has been based on a misunderstanding, and really means 'I don't know'.