Randall Munroe's XKCD: article Properties

Randall Munroe Upstages WC


Randall Munroe, who draws the excellent webcomic XKCD, has posted two comics on particle physics in the last week, each upstaging WC’s pitiful attempt to explain quarks. Maybe by posting his most recent cartoon, he’ll cut WC some slack. A wonderful, geeky summary of particle properties that only slightly overstates the jargon. WC will throw…

Apple CEO Tim Cook (Photographer unkown)

How Tim Cook Was Right


Back in February 2016, the FBI wanted very badly to see the contents of San Bernadino murderer Syed Farook’s iPhone. The Feds demanded that Apple engineer a back door to get around the iPhone’s security features. The U.S. Department of Justice invoked the All Writs Act of 1789 to try to compel Apple to open the…

Image of the star KIC 8462852 (Boyajian’s Star) at infrared (left) and ultraviolet (right) wavelengths.

Tabby’s Star


“When I meet God, I am going to ask him two questions: Why relativity? And why turbulence? I really believe he will have an answer for the first.” — Attributed to Wener Heisenberg, 1901-1976 Tabby’s Star, technically a distant star in the constellation Cygnus, known officially as KIC 8462852, is the latest astrophysical puzzle to challenge…

A Westinghouse project in Waynesboro, Ga., remains unfinished, its future in doubt after the bankruptcy filing.

An Object Lesson in Nuclear Power


Westinghouse Electric has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The bankruptcy filing may signal the death of the nuclear power industry in the United States. Westinghouse Electric – a subsidiary of Japan’s Toshiba Corporation since 2005 – has four large nuclear power reactors under construction in the southeast United States. The plants, located in Georgia and South…

State of the Art 2008: Olympus E-3, 300mm f2.8 with 2.0 Teleconverter

Olympus: A Final Note


On March 10, 2017 Olympus ceased production of its Four-Thirds lenses. It was hardly a surprise. It’s been more than six years since Olympus released a new Olympus 4/3rds DLSR. Long-time readers may recall that WC used the Olympus 4/3rds system through four generations of cameras. In April 2013, WC faced the inevitable and switched…