Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Signs of the Times (part 8) - #JustPray

Lord's Prayer/everystockphoto.com

The Church of England has launched a new site, Just Pray, to offer advice on what prayer is and how to pray. The campaign is geared for the digital age, and one of its chosen venues to promote the new site is to advertise in theaters.

The clip below (which was cleared by the Cinema Advertising Authority and British Board of Film Classification) was scheduled when the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens, debuted a week before Christmas.



But the Digital Cinema Media, which handles most of the cinema advertising in the UK, barred the ad. They believe it "carries the risk of upsetting, or offending, audiences".

[reference: Church 'bewildered' by refusal to screen Lord's Prayer adU.K. Theaters Deny "Just Pray" Ad In Front of 'Star Wars' Screenings ]

Really?

As our Lord said, after He taught us to pray:


But I tell you, love your enemies
and pray for those who persecute you

Matthew 5:44 (NIV)


So

Let us 

#JustPray

for these are just

Signs of the Times .....



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Previous posts in this series:

Signs of the Times (part 1) - Camping in the Parks (2012)

Signs of the Times (part 2) - Layaway (2012)



Signs of the Times (part 5) - Staycations (2013)

Signs of the Times (part 6) - Fear of Missing Out (2015)
 

Signs of the Times (Part 7) - Leap Second - the new Y2K? (2015)


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photo from: Lord's Prayer/everystockphoto.com

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Physics (part 3) - 100 years of Einstein

wikipedia/GPB circling Earth
November, 2015 marks the centennial of Einstein papers that rocked the world and withstood the test of many experiments. Let me tell of story of a couple of these.

Gravity Probe B and Me ...

Briefly, I worked on the Gravity Probe B (GP-B) project. I say briefly because budget cuts curtailed my tenure, though I moved on to other projects. And that is another story.

Yet the decades old GP-B soldiered on and its satellite was launched in 2004. The experiment tested two elements of Einstein's Theory of General Relativity.

(1)   The Geodetic Effect, a precession (like that of  a spinning top) in curved space-time.

(2)   The Frame-dragging Effect, space-time getting pulled out of shape by a rotating body.

For more  information on this project and its results, please check out the official Stanford website: Gravity Probe B | Testing Einstein's Universe

Below is a good video that sums it all up.



But let's start at the very beginning ....

November, 1915, was a watershed month for physics. Einstein submitted four papers, one per week, to the Prussian Academy in Berlin. They launched the gravitational revolution of general relativity, overthrowing Newton's theory of the universe. [reference: Einstein's genius changed science's perception of gravity ]

Meanwhile, during this time, astronomers were on a serious

Search for the planet Vulcan ... no kidding

Newton's classic view of gravity led scientists to believe there was a hidden planet, which they called Vulcan, that caused Mercury's perturbations. But it took Einstein to crack this mystery, as explained below:



As Gravity Probe B in the 21st century would provide more evidence to vindicate general relativity, explaining the anomalies in Mercury's orbit gave convincing validation at the birth of this theory in the early 20th century. 

Also,  I wrote about this search for this planet that wasn't there and posted it on my website in the article: Mr. Spock and Dr. Einstein

As Einstein's General Relativity turns 100, it seems the theory will ...

Live long and prosper!

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Previous posts in this series:

Physics (part 1) - Picking Feynman's Brain (2013)

Physics (part 2) - Flat Earth? It depends ...  (2015)

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Photo from:  wikipedia/GPB circling Earth