Archive for December, 2010

Los Alamos Scientist : TSA Scanners Shred Human DNA

Article Here:

Saturday December 18th 2010

‘In layman’s terms what Alexandrov and his team discovered is that the resonant effects of the THz waves bombarding humans unzips the double-stranded DNA molecule. This ripping apart of the twisted chain of DNA creates bubbles between the genes that can interfere with the processes of life itself: normal DNA replication and critical gene expression.

Other studies have not discovered this deadly effect on the DNA because the research only investigated ordinary resonant effects.’

While the application of scientific knowledge creates technology, sometimes the technology is later redefined by science. Such is the case with terahertz (THz) radiation, the energy waves that drive the technology of the TSA: back scatter airport scanners.

Emerging THz technological applications

THz waves are found between microwaves and infrared on the electromagnetic spectrum. This type of radiation was chosen for security devices because it can penetrate matter such as clothing, wood, paper and other porous material that’s non-conducting.
This type of radiation seems less threatening because it doesn’t penetrate deeply into the body and is believed to be harmless to both people and animals.

THz waves may have applications beyond security devices. Research has been done to determine the feasibility of using the radiation to detect tumors underneath the skin and for analyzing the chemical properties of various materials and compounds. The potential marketplace for THz driven technological applications may generate many billions of dollars in revenue.

Because of the potential profits, intense research on THz waves and applications has mushroomed over the last decade.

Health risks
The past several years the possible health risks from cumulative exposure to THz waves was mostly dismissed. Experts pointed to THz photons and explained that they are not strong enough to ionize atoms or molecules; nor are they able to break the chains of chemical bonds. They assert—and it is true—that while higher energy photons like ultraviolet rays and X-rays are harmful, the lower energy ones like terahertz waves are basically harmless. []

While that is true, there are other biophysics at work. Some studies have shown that THZ can cause great genetic harm, while other similar studies have shown no such evidence of deleterious affects.

Boian Alexandrov at the Center for Nonlinear Studies at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico recently published an abstract with colleagues, “DNA Breathing Dynamics in the Presence of a Terahertz Field ” that reveals very disturbing—even shocking—evidence that the THz waves generated by TSA scanners is significantly damaging the DNA of the people being directed through the machines, and the TSA workers that are in close proximity to the scanners throughout their workday.

From the abstracts own synopsis:
“We consider the influence of a terahertz field on the breathing dynamics of double-stranded DNA. We model the spontaneous formation of spatially localized openings of a damped and driven DNA chain, and find that linear instabilities lead to dynamic dimerization, while true local strand separations require a threshold amplitude mechanism. Based on our results we argue that a specific terahertz radiation exposure may significantly affect the natural dynamics of DNA, and thereby influence intricate molecular processes involved in gene expression and DNA replication.”

In layman’s terms what Alexandrov and his team discovered is that the resonant effects of the THz waves bombarding humans unzips the double-stranded DNA molecule. This ripping apart of the twisted chain of DNA creates bubbles between the genes that can interfere with the processes of life itself: normal DNA replication and critical gene expression.

Other studies have not discovered this deadly effect on the DNA because the research only investigated ordinary resonant effects.

Nonlinear resonance, however, is capable of such damage and this sheds light on the genotoxic effects inherent in the utilization of THz waves upon living tissue. The team emphasizes in their abstract that the effects are probabilistic rather than deterministic.

Unfortunately, DNA damage is not limited only to THz wave exposure. Other research has been done that reveals lower frequency microwaves used by cell phones and Wi-Fi cause some harm to DNA over time as well. ["Single- and double-strand DNA breaks in rat brain cells after acute exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation."]  //Terrance Aym


Italian doctor claims to have a simple cure to Multiple Sclerosis

Article Here:

  • November 28th, 2009 10:19 pm ET

Dr. Zamboni who has come up with a possible simple solution to MS
(from Dr. Zamboni’s official website)

Italian Dr. Paolo Zamboni, whose wife has Multiple Sclerosis, said he stumbled upon a simple experimental surgery that could help people with the illness.

“I am confident that this could be a revolution for the research and diagnosis of multiple sclerosis,” said Dr. Zamboni, who is the professor of medicine at the University of Ferrara in Italy, and has done the procedure on his wife, Elena, who was diagnosed with MS in 1995 at the age of 37.

The doctor said he was determined to find a cure for the illness that strikes people in the prime of their lives but whose causes are unknown and whose effective treatments are few. He looked at the disease in a different way, not as an autoimmune condition, but as a vascular disease.

Now, there is a great deal of interest in his research, and the CCSVI, or Chronic Cerebro-Spinal Venous Insufficiency, which means that he believes that MS is caused by an excessive build-up of iron in the brain, and by unblocking blood vessels to the brain it eliminates what triggers the disease.

Of the 63 patients, including his wife, who have relapsing-remitting MS, 73 percent have had no further symptoms two years after the surgery.

Symptom of MS include attacks of vertigo, numbness, temporary vision loss and chronic fatigue.

Researchers around the world are reacting to these new claims:

* In Canada, the MS Society is now looking for proposals that research funding on Zamboni’s theory.

* The University of Buffalo is trying to replicate his work. Dr. Robert Zivadinov already launched plans to recruit 1,100 patients with MS and 600 other volunteers as controls who are either healthy or have neurological diseases other than MS. Using Doppler ultrasound, they will scan the patients to see if they can find any blockages within the veins of the neck and brain.

* In Europe, scientists are using the research to try to understand the overall causes of MS.

Mark Thompson: Britain needs a channel like Fox News

December 18, 2010 2 comments

BBC’s director general says rules on impartiality on television are outdated in internet era and advocates opinionated journalism., Friday 17 December 2010

Mark Thompson bbc director general
Mark Thompson, the BBC’s director general, says that as the distinction between the web and television collapses, it no longer makes sense for public service broadcasters to have a ‘monopoly’ over the airwaves. Photograph: Jeff Overs/BBC/PA

Mark Thompson, the BBC‘s director general, said British broadcasters should be free to launch an equivalent to Fox News in the UK because existing rules to guarantee impartiality in television were becoming outdated in the era of the internet.

Thompson, while speaking at a Whitehall seminar on impartiality in broadcasting, said that as the distinction between the web and television collapses, it no longer makes sense for public service broadcasters such as the BBC, ITV and Channel 4, to have a “monopoly” over the airwaves.

The director general said: “There was a logic in allowing impartial broadcasters to have a monopoly of the broadcasting space. But in the future, maybe there should be a broad range of choices? Why shouldn’t the public be able to see and hear, as well as read, a range of opinionated journalism and then make up their own mind what they think about it?

“The BBC and Channel 4 have a history of clearly labelled polemical programmes. But why not entire polemical channels which have got stronger opinions? I find the argument persuasive.”

So unexpected was Thompson’s intervention that his remarks caught some of the BBC’s best known journalists unawares. Nick Robinson, the BBC’s political editor, who chaired the debate on Thursday evening, admitted the DG’s plea for regulatory liberalisation had “slightly taken me by surprise”.

Thompson said that the BBC News services would remain impartial, but he added that views regarded as “extreme” could and should be broadcast by the BBC even within the current rules on impartiality.

The BBC had been, historically, “weak and nervous” about airing debates about immigration and Europe, he said – but added that he believed the public broadcaster had forced the main parties to discuss immigration during the 2010 election campaign. He promised that there would be more space for “extreme and radical perspectives” on the BBC, which one day could become common views.

In the US, strong opinion had won the ratings battle, with the right-wing Fox News getting a larger audience than CNN, Thompson said. But that needn’t be replicated in Britain. “I don’t believe that necessarily means you get the dire consequences that some people see in America. Having a broader range of channels would actually strengthen that enduring tradition of impartial journalism across BBC, ITN and Channel 4. They would continue to be trusted.

“Impartiality is sovereign for the BBC. The premium on impartiality would grow. But I’m not convinced that the public service broadcasters need to have a monopoly over news for ever.” During the debate it was suggested the Daily Mail newspaper should be free to set up its own opinionated news station if it so wished.

Ironically, Thompson’s proposal makes him an ally of the Murdoch family. The BBC director general told the audience that Rupert Murdoch had told him he would like Sky News to go down a polemical “Fox-style” route – but that the editors of the channel had brushed off his wishes.

Kelvin MacKenzie, the former editor of the Sun, also on the seminar panel, said he should be able to host a debate about immigration or Britain pulling out of Europe without having to present a countervailing point of view.

MacKenzie said he had recently discussed with David Cameron his own idea for a radio “free for all”, with talk stations allowed to say what they want, free from Ofcom regulation. The prime minister apparently replied “erm…” and then said it was an interesting idea for radio but the experiment probably wasn’t suitable for television.

Here is a comment I like from this article on the Grauns website….. See Private Eye for many similar examples..


We’ve 24 hour rolling news channels which manage to somehow shoehorn three stories into a day, with endless shots of reporters outside buildings who don’t have any details as yet, Huw, and tracking shots of the Ministers car just coming through the lights there. Oh, they’re on amber, his car’s stopped. Thought the driver was going to go for it there, Huw. We’ve got satellite news and internet news and SMS news and still, somehow, we learn less than we did from a half hour bulletin twenty years ago. The public is exposed to more and more news but is less informed than ever because the quality of that news is low-grade, dumbed down, infotainment, computer graphic-laden shit.

The last thing we need is a channel full of splenetic gobshites unloading lies, prejudice and distortion on the public, and lowering the level of public debate even further.

As for you, Thompson, do your job. Hire some reporters, put some backbone back into the news, un-dumb Panorama, Question Time, Newsnight, get some rigour into 24, stop pissing cash away on vanity projects and kick yourself in the backside for thinking this latest idea is anything other than contemptible.

Categories: Cinema + TV

1974 Der Spiegel Article: New ice age threatens…..

Some 36 years ago Der Spiegel expected a new ice age. Here are some extracts from the article that appeared on the 12th August 1974.  Article in German Here:

P Gosselin
Friday, December 17, 2010

An increased frequency in extreme weather events, a cooling North Atlantic, and growing Arctic sea ice were viewed as signs of climate change. The odds of a warmer climate in the future, according to one scientist, were “at best 1 in 10,000″ (see below). That’s what Der Spiegel wrote about in a 3700-word article back in 1974, warning the world of a coming ice age.

In that issue Der Spiegel described a series of ”weather extremes” occurring all over the world, claiming they were unmistakable signs of a climate change to cooling: deluges of rain in West Germany, severe thunderstorms that uprooted trees and blew off roofs in Berlin, the worst storm in 100 years devastating much of Lower Saxony, hurricane Agnes inflicting 3 billion dollars in damage, floods in Japan and Peru, temperatures in Argentina, India and South Africa dropping to their lowest levels in 300 years.

Back in 1974, in its introduction, Der Spiegel wrote:

Is a new ice age coming? Not right away, but the rainy summers in northern Europe, scientists fear, were only a part of the worldwide shift in weather — a preview of cooler and wetter times ahead.

It’s the same type of stuff we’re hearing today from the hysterical media. As Der Spiegel wrote, there were signs of climate change happening everywhere, and the world was seriously threatened. Scientists and experts were forecasting widespread global suffering and that billions could die. Today, thirty six years later, we see they were all wrong.

To provide an overview, look at the North Atlantic Oscillation 36 years ago (dark blue line is CET, orange/light blue is NAO). Back in 1974 one expert said the warming that followed had only a 1 in 10,000 chance of happening:

North Atlantic Oscillation index compared with Central England Temperature winter record, 1860-2010

Der Spiegel 1974 – New Ice Age Approaching. Odds Of A Warm Future “At Best 1 in 10,000″ NAO CETw copy 2

North Atlantic Oscillation index compared with CET winter record, 1860-2010 (CET graph source: ).

Today life is far better as a whole than what the doomsayers projected – thanks to technology, and to the warming that ensued – against the 10,000 to 1 odds. Strange how governments, media and activists want to return to those cold and miserable days that Der Spiegel complained about in 1974. Back then they were unanimous in saying warmer was better.

Der Spiegel wrote that the signs of cooling were detected in the North Atlantic:

At the latest since 1960, in the NorthAtlantic, meteorologists and climate scientists have believed that something is wrong with the vast system of the global weather: The earthly climate they believe is on the verge of changing over… First measurements showed a cooling of the North Atlantic. There the ocean temperature dropped over the last 20 years from 12°C on average to 11.5°C.

And the Arctic ice was growing at an alarming rate (ignoring man’s emissions of GHG, apparently):

Meanwhile the ice pack and glacier-covered area of the northern hemisphere grew by about 12%, at the Arctic Circle the coldest temperatures in 200 years were recorded.

Full Article can be found Here:


Product placement to be allowed on British television

Er this isn’t exactly recent news…it’s just going to occur soon….

Article Here:

ITV is hoping to earn millions after the ban on product placement on commercial television is lifted next year., Friday 17 December

The next time someone asks for a particular brand of soup or toothpaste at Dev’s shop in Coronation Street, then make a note; it could be the first example of product placement on British television, as rules are swept away by media regulator Ofcom next week.

ITV is hoping to earn tens of millions of pounds from the likes of Heinz or Colgate next year, after the long standing ban on product placement on commercial television is lifted. The move follows years of lobbying from the industry, with ITV taking a leading role.

The commercial broadcaster is coy about its immediate plans, and concerned not to frighten viewers by saturating its programmes with branded goods, but ITV will focus on introducing products into its soaps and daytime output first.

Product placement company MirriAd said that in the US and other markets where the practice is well-established, product placement typically accounts for 5% of total TV advertising revenue. That would make the UK market worth £150m a year initially, although MirriAd argues it will grow rapidly.

Categories: Cinema + TV

Captain Beefheart was provocative and unpredictable…

The influence of Don Van Vliet, aka Captain Beefheart, stretched from the Grateful Dead to the Sex Pistols and beyond.

The Guardian, Saturday 18 December 2010  Ewen MacAskill in Washington

captain beefheart died aged 69
Captain Beefheart changed his name from Don Van Vliet at the suggestion of Frank Zappa. Photograph: EMI publishing

Don Van Vliet, better-known as Captain Beefheart, one of the most influential American musicians of the 1960s and 1970s and avant garde frontman of the Magic Band, has died in California, aged 69. A representative of the Michael Werner Gallery, in New York, which hosted several of his art exhibitions, confirmed his death from complications from multiple sclerosis in a statement yesterday.

With a mixture of Chicago blues, jazz, rock and his own experimental music his reach and influence stretched from the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane in America to Jethro Tull, Hawkwind and Roxy Music in the UK. His biggest legacy may have been his influence on the punk movement, cited by several key figures as an influence, including Johnny Rotten.

Beefheart was a close friend of the late Frank Zappa, who played in the same group with him as teenagers and although they had a love-hate relationship they would play together later in life. Zappa often supported him – sometimes financially – at various key points in his life, and gave him a recording contract when other labels would not touch him.

As children they would listen to old rhythm and blues records, dreaming of projects that mostly came to nothing. One was to make a film called Captain Beefheart meets the Grunt People, which never happened but introduced the name by which he would later become known.

Born Don Glen Vliet, he later changed his name to Don Van Vliet, before changing it on the suggestion of Zappa to the stage name Captain Beefheart.

Singing and writing songs and playing harmonica and saxophone, he was backed by the Magic Band, a succession of musicians with as unlikely names as his own – Winged Eel Fingerling, Zoot Horn Rollo, the Mascara Snake and Rockette Morton – with whom he played between 1965 and 1982. They completed a dozen albums, of which the best-remembered is 1969’s Trout Mask Replica, placed at number 58 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

Although his style was rhythm and blues based he introduced a completely unorthodox approach to structure, rhythm and key. The band wore a mixture of cloaks and second hand outfits, and the Captain wore a hat, usually a topper, which became his trademark.

He was a provocative and unpredictable figure, given to primal screams into the microphone or even grunts and was outspoken and candid about the music industry and the people in it.

He disbanded his group – or they abandoned him – in the 1980s, with some complaining he ran a regime that was little short of tyrannical. He concentrated instead on painting and became reclusive.

Tom Waits, another musician who was influenced by Beefheart, said of him: “Once you’ve heard Beefheart, it’s hard to wash him out of your clothes. It stains, like coffee or blood.”

He stubbornly refused to conform and that was perhaps one of the main reasons that commercial success eluded him as a musician, although he was fond of the lifestyle that success brought.

He loved fast cars and owned variously a Hudson, a Corvette and a Jaguar. However it was his art that brought him more commercial success: despite having no formal training he drew and painted throughout his recording career.

His first exhibition was in Liverpool at the Bluecoat Gallery in April 1972, while he was touring in England. In 1982, on the advice of New York art dealer Michael Werner that he would never be taken seriously as a painter unless he gave up music, Beefheart turned seriously to art.

In the past few years he gained a reasonable reputation as an artist, mainly doing large abstracts in oils, and was able to demand high prices for his work.

The Michael Werner Gallery, in a statement carried by Rolling Stone magazine, said: “Don Van Vliet was a complex and influential figure in the visual and performing arts.” It described him as one of the most original recording artists. “

“After two decades in the spotlight as an avant-garde composer and performer, Van Vliet retired from performing to devote himself wholeheartedly to painting and drawing. Like his music, Van Vliet’s lush paintings are the product of a truly rare and unique vision.”

He leaves behind his wife of more than 40 years, Jan.

Article Here:

Captain Beefheart: dust blows forward and dust blows back – an appreciation

Don Van Vliet, aka Captain Beefheart, was mysterious, alchemical, inexplicable and unrepeatable


The Guardian, Saturday 18 December 2010  Alexis Petridis

Captain Beefheart dust blows
Captain Beefheart’s earthy holler was in the blues tradition, but his music came from another planet. Photograph: Richard Mccaffrey/Getty Images

He never sold many records. His biggest hit album, Lick My Decals Off Baby, reached number 20 in the UK in 1970. But in a recording career that lasted from the 1960s until 1982, he succeeded in redefining the parameters of rock music.

His sound shifted over the years, from relatively straightforward blues rock to doomed attempts to court a mainstream audience; but at its height, it reached hitherto-unimaginable heights of avant garde experimentation.

Beefheart’s most celebrated album, Trout Mask Replica of 1969, offered a world in which rock music appeared to have spun entirely off its axis.

The singer’s earthy holler grounded it in the blues tradition, but the lyrics were wild and surreal. And the music seemed to be from another planet, far beyond even the most acid-fried psychedelic band could muster.

Standard time signatures were disregarded. Instruments – which extended beyond the standard guitar, bass and drums were set up to incorporate bass clarinet and musette – clashed to the point that it frequently sounded like everyone in the Magic Band was playing an entirely different song to everyone else.

The most obvious reference point was free jazz, but the most startling thing about the Magic Band may have been that nobody was improvising: every note had apparently been carefully worked out in advance by Beefheart (he wrote the entire album on piano) and drilled into the band via a regime that former members later protested was little short of tyrannical.

Some 41 years after the album’s release, Trout Mask Replica remains the standard by which almost all experimental rock music is judged, its reputation as a fearsomely difficult listen undimmed by the passing of time or its influence.

For every listener who was simply baffled, there was someone whose view of what rock was capable of was changed forever, among them John Peel and Simpsons creator Matt Groening. Their proselytising, and Beefheart’s influence (Johnny Rotten was a fan; Tom Waits fell under his spell; The Pixies and Red Hot Chili Peppers all paid tribute) ensured his legacy.

But no one has ever really sounded like the classic Magic Band in full flight: more striking even than their music is the sense that Beefheart achieved something genuinely mysterious, alchemical, inexplicable and unrepeatable.

Article Here:

Captain Beefheart dies aged 69 from MS.

Captain Beefheart obituary

Discordant and mesmeric, the 1960s Magic Band singer Don Van Vliet was rhythm and blues based but completely unorthodox; latterly he won fame as an artist

The Guardian, Saturday 18 December 2010

Musician Captain Beefheart in Fedora

Captain Beefheart in 1983. He described his thing to an uncomprehending interviewer as ‘music to dematerialise the catatonia’. Photograph: Deborah Feingold/Corbis

Captain Beefheart, Don Van Vliet, who has died at the age of 69, was one of the most influential American musicians of the 1960s and early 1970s. His status was always cult rather than commercial, and for most of his career he was broke.

Yet he remained a hero to most of the musical avant garde – the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane and the Mothers of Invention in America; Roxy Music, Hawkwind, Jethro Tull and Edgar Broughton in England. He was John Peel’s favourite artist, and the DJ did much to promote Beefheart by playing his records when no other radio programme would touch them.

In 1964 Beefheart formed the Magic Band, the first of many line-ups under the name.They sounded pretty discordant, but due to Beefheart’s extraordinarily mesmeric presence as frontman, a four and a half octave vocal range, his eccentric ability with lyrics, and his inexplicable one-liners to interviewers, the band was unforgettable.

Beefheart once described his thing to an uncomprehending radio interviewer as “music to dematerialise the catatonia”. His style wasrhythm and blues based but completely unorthodox in its approach to structure, rhythm and key.

Magic Band musicians had names like Winged Eel Fingerling, Zoot Horn Rollo, the Mascara Snake, and Rockette Morton. They wore a ragbag of cloaks and thrift-shop outfits, and the Captain wore a hat, usually a topper, which became his trademark.

Van Vliet was born in Glendale, California on 15 January 1941, an only child who showed artistic talent from an early age: he claimed he was producing respected sculpture when he was five. When he was 13, his family (his father drove a bread truck) moved to the Mojave desert, an atmosphere that was to have an enormous influence on him, and particularly his painting, and a place where he lived on and off all his life. In 1959 he was offered a place at Antelope Valley junior college as an art major, but instead he hung out at home (doted on by his mother and grandmother) with his schoolfriend Frank Zappa, listening to old r’n’b records and planning various projects, most of which came to nothing. One was dreamed up sitting stoned in a car (“not Zappa,” recalled Beefheart, “Frank never turned on”) in the desert in 1962 , to shoot a film called Captain Beefheart meets the Grunt People. The film was never made, but the name stuck.

From their early teens Beefheart and Zappa developed a love-hate relationship which became life long, mainly based on resentment of Zappa’s commercial success. Despite briefly moving to Cucamonga in California in the early 1960s to be with Zappa intending to form a band called the Soots, Beefheart remained in the desert while Frank, an astute businessman, moved to Los Angeles and founded The Mothers of Invention.

Beefheart’s early albums remain the most original: Safe as Milk (produced by Bob Krasnow and Richard Perry, 1967); Strictly Personal (completed in a week, produced by Bob Krasnow, 1968) and two albums for Zappa’s Straight label: Trout Mask Replica (1969), and Lick My Decals Off Baby (1970).

For Trout Mask Replica Beefheart locked the Magic Band in a house in Woodland Hills for eight months, continually rehearsing and reworking the songs. Virtually broke, they often had nothing but bread to eat but when they finally got into the studio they recorded the entire double album in four and a half hours.

Although they admired him, other musicians found Beefheart exasperating to work with. Guitarist Ry Cooder played on the first album and was due to do the Monterey festival with the band, but left in a temper after Beefheart had a panic attack during rehearsal and walked off the back of the stage, landing on top of his manager.

It was Beefheart’s stubborn refusal to conform that invariably lost him the big bucks. And he was not indifferent to money. He loved fast cars and owned variously a Hudson, Corvette and Jaguar, drank brandy alexanders, and was also something of a shoe fetishist (possibly due to a spell working as a shoe salesman), always wearing the best ones he could afford. In 1974 Beefheart was signed to Virgin Records. Richard Branson also desperately wanted to sign Zappa, but it was during one of Beefheart’s hate-Frank periods. Despite being warned never to mention the name, virtually the first words Branson uttered to Beefheart were about how great it would be when he’d also got Zappa on to the label. It was a fateful and uneasy start. Yet when, as invariably happened with Beefheart, the relationship between artist and record company soured, it was Zappa who rescued Beefheart and took him on tour. Beefheart responded by filling a series of huge sketch books with angry drawings of Zappa.

Despite having no formal training in art, Beefheart drew and painted throughout his recording career. His first exhibition was in Liverpool at the Bluecoat Gallery in April 1972, while he was touringin England. He executed 15 black and white paintings in situ. In 1982, on the advice of New York art dealer Michael Werner that he would never be taken seriously as a painter unless he gave up music, Beefheart turned seriouslyto art. In the past few yearshe has gained a reasonable reputation as an artist, mainly doing large abstracts in oils.

He married his wife Jan in 1970. She gave him a secure base and cared for him through what was debilitating multiple sclerosis until the end.

Don Van Vliet (Captain Beefheart), musician and artist, born 15 January 1941; died 17 December 2010

Einstein was right, you can be in two places at once

Friday, 17 December 2010 By Steve Connor, Science Editor

A device that exists in two different states at the same time, and coincidentally proves that Albert Einstein was right when he thought he was wrong, has been named as the scientific breakthrough of the year.

The machine, consisting of a sliver of wafer-thin metal, is the first man-made device to be governed by the mysterious quantum forces that operate at the level of atoms and sub-atomic particles.

Normal, everyday objects obey the laws of conventional Newtonian physics, named after Sir Isaac Newton, but these rules break down on the sub-atomic scale and a whole new branch of theoretical physics had to be invented to explain what happens on this sub-microscopic level.

Einstein was the first to embrace quantum physics but later rejected it on the grounds that it made everything unpredictable – “God does not play dice with the universe,” he famously stated.

Einstein famously rejected quantum theory as unable to explain the universe

Getty Images

Einstein famously rejected quantum theory as unable to explain the universe

However, a range of effects has been recorded over the past few years that can only be explained by quantum mechanics and in March scientists were able to build the first device that seemed to follow the quantum rules that Einstein was the first to realise applied to light waves.

The breakthrough, recognised by the journal Science as the most significant this year, opens the way to a range of practical developments such as quantum computers that are far faster than conventional processors and which could never be hacked into because they handle and transmit data using an unbreakable form of encryption.

“Quantum theory dictates that a very tiny thing can absorb energy only in discrete amounts, can never sit perfectly still, and can literally be in two places at once,” said Adrian Cho, a writer for Science. “This represents the first time that scientists have demonstrated quantum effects in the motion of a human-made object. It opens up a variety of possibilities ranging from new experiments that meld quantum control over light, electrical currents and motion to, perhaps someday, tests of the bounds of quantum mechanics and our sense of reality.”

The breakthrough was achieved by physicists Andrew Cleland and John Martinis from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Their machine consisted of a tiny metal paddle made of semiconductor material just visible to the naked eye. By supercooling the device to just above absolute zero (minus 273C), then raising its energy by a “single quantum”, they made it vibrate by getting thicker and thinner at a frequency of some 6 billion times a second, producing a detectable electric current. They even managed to get it to vibrate in two energy states at once, both a lot and a little – a phenomenon allowed only by the rules of quantum mechanics.

“Physicists still haven’t achieved a two-places-at-once state with a tiny object like this one,” Mr Cho said. “But now that they have reached this simplest state of quantum motion, it seems a whole lot more obtainable.”

Article Here:

Comment from the Independent Article that helps explain….well a little…

Quantum physicist’s rejections of gravity make it hard for them to keep their feet on the ground. Things are quite simple really.
Electromagnetic particles have two states, a matter state and an energy state, they oscillate between the two. In the matter state they travel relatively slowly and in the energy state they travel almost instantaneously, the averaged result, “the speed of light”
Every sub particle piece of matter in the universe has an energy and matter state, all oscillating between energy and matter in unison, a coherent pulse.
Light particles are isolated from the rest of the universe when they are “charged” by a field generated at their creation and begin to oscillate at their “natural frequency”
Time is the wavelength of the universal pulse and gravity is the attraction of the energy state to a field set up in the transformation of the matter to energy state.
Before the big bang there was an energy wave, half of which began to concentrate forming matter. We in the matter state are an imperfect image of the energy state.
Light is brought to a standstill in a Bose Einstein Condensate because there is no energy state to pass through.
Time dilation occurs because when travelling at fast speeds the traveller covers immensely more distance in the energy state than the matter state and therefore the time cycle is skewed.

Britain’s coldest winters on record in pictures

Photo Gallery Here:

1979: A car buried in a snowdrift on the Perth-Inverness road, Scotland


The only winter from the past 47 years to make it into the coldest 50 since records began, at number 28. There were snows everywhere, but a great blizzard hit the south on New Year’s Eve, bringing Heathrow airport to a standstill for several days. January’s temperature averaged -0.4C, as continuous frosts and snowfalls continued.

1979: An RAC patrol man looks at a car buried in a snowdrift on the Perth-Inverness road, Scotland


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