Speed of light challenged!

Speed of light has changed, claims ACA physicist

I’ve always held to the un-scientific opinion that the speed of light is not a constant, and not a universal “speed limit”. I’m not a physicist, and I’ve no foundation to back up my belief, but I still can’t shake the notion that the speed of light isn’t as absolute as scientists believe it is. I have my reasons. The fact that light can be slowed and/or frozen is an example of things that generate my skepticism. But, in the world of physics, without experimental proof my reasons are nothing short of heretical rhetoric. People have been burned at the stake for such unpopular beliefs.

No burning stake for me yet, but I have been in some heated arguments on the topic. Defending my belief that the speed of light isn’t special has given me an unpleasant taste of what it must be like for a religious person to argue their faith with a non-believer like myself. It’s tough to believe in something that has no factual defense.

Fortunately for me, the speed of light is more observable than god. The jury is still out, but very soon I may get to claim a big fat “I-told-you-so”. An Australian Physicist has found discrepancies which may mean the speed of light really isn’t a constant.

Maybe someone will find proof of god’s existence. But if I’m right about light, maybe I can use the new and improved light theory to escape his wrath.

Bonus Card Gang Bang

Getting raped with a Bonus Card
A local shopper does a semi-scientific study to determine if stores with “loyalty cards” actually save customers any money. I just love that term… “loyalty card”. Why don’t they just call it what it is: a “let-us-track-your-buying-habits-or-we-ass-rape-you-at-the-register card”.

Another account on Loyalty Cards
A lawyer talks about the present possible future of the Loyalty Card trend.

Smile, You’re on In-Store Camera
And it wouldn’t be complete without Wired news telling us about the latest technology that will lead to that future: Face recognition systems, floor sensors, Biometrics, and software to link it all together… and of course, a loyalty card to give that all important link between the sensors and your real identity.

Buy American and Hating the GPL

“Buy American” Is Un-American

Interesting discussion of the Marxist underpinnings behind the “Buy American” campaign. I’ve long felt that buying over-priced, low-quality products just because they are “American” is inherently stupid. The classic case of “Buy American” focuses often on the Auto industry. Supporting unions like those of the US Auto industry is absolutely immoral in my opinion. Why should I prop up a bunch of over-paid, under-skilled asshats just because the more efficient (and more honest) foreign companies would put the American company out of business? OH NO!!! Some Americans might loose their job and have to put some effort into developing a useful skillset instead of getting paid $50/hour to tighten nuts! OH SHIT!

Why I Don’t Love GPL

Interesting, if convoluted, rant about the GPL. The author attacks the GPL from the aspect that it ties a philosophical viewpoint to the use of the software and how this takes the economic road of a “shadow market” (like drugs or other illegal activities). Very interesting, though I’m not sure if I see much merit in the argument.

Circular Transportation Facilitation Device

Weird science

David Cohen salutes the weird and wonderful in the world of international scholarly research during the past year

“In the area of advancing technological research, the Australian physicist, John Keogh, probably surprised many by devoting part of the year to preparing an application for an unexpected patent in his antipodean homeland – for what he called a “circular transportation facilitation device”, better known as “the wheel”. Dr Keogh later said, a touch unconvincingly, that he did this to highlight problems in a new Australian patent law.”