The Temperature Cliff: February
Antarctic plant species: September
Creative cartography: April
Pseudo-pi in the Zoo MAX station:
3D Center of Art & Photography:
Portland: A city with science?
the 36 months of "Have you Noticed..." up to now, the topics have been
of two types: 1) oddities characteristic of Portland; and 2) oddities of
science, especially where the science is likely misunderstood.
Some months have had topics
that could easily fall into both categories--things about Portland that
relate to science.
months; which topics?
Sauve operated the Hudson Bay Company (John McLoughlin,
factor) dairy farm on the island from 1838 to 1844.
The spelling of his name got corrupted to "Sauvie." Earlier, the
name "Sauvies Island" was often used, but eventually "Sauvie Island" was
officially adopted by the U.S. Board of Geographic Names.
Lewis and Clark called
the island, "Waptatoo" after the arrowroot plant growing there and
eaten by the Native Americans living there.
The island was known
for a time as "Wyeth Island": Nathaniel Wyeth operated a trading post there.
southern tip of Sauvie Island
Island is the second largest fresh water island in the
United States. Oregon Historical Society's Bybee-Howell House remains
from the very early days of agriculture on the island. Bybee was
one of the first farmers; he built his house on the highest rise around.
The Howells were the last to live there.
who was Sauvie?
line is 312211. Each line describes the line above it. (Next
is 13112221 -- "One three, one one, two twos, two ones.")
first 10-digit prime in e).com
was, the URL for a web site that invited those who got there to solve another
puzzle, and then the answer to that puzzle was the password to enter yet
another website which was an invitation to send in a CV and further explore
the possibility of working for Google.
Can we entertain
the dream: . . .
school teachers…. journalists… visitors…
high-tech, creative companies, looking for a place to set roots in…
look at Portland and see:
among the many ways Portland (and the Willamette valley) is outstanding
among the places of America, is that its citizens have a habit of, and
a reputation for, seeking lifelong learning.
they seek not simply knowledge but also understanding, the deeper insight
that makes knowledge useful. Understanding transcends pseudoscience!
Deeper understanding is also at the roots of the finer arts: the great
literature, sculpture, painting, poetry, music and much more... (Portland
has a lot of art galleries.)
it's what leads to the more humane governments and societies . . .to livable
Portland, and Science
LABS APTITUDE TEST
was an insert in Physics Today and in Nature.
companies Portland would like to see thriving here tend to be those which
hire people who can answer questions like #3 in the GLAT:
is the next line?
#9 reads, "This space left intentionally
blank. Please fill it with something that improves upon emptiness."
prominent public places, Google flew flags which read simply:
first 10-digit prime in e).com
news media assumed that the public would not understand the message,
would not be interested in learning its meaning, and possibly could
not understand its meaning.
with October 2004's topic)
is the answer to #3?
did the message on the flag mean?
we make Portland a city where the news media can assume much if its public
seeks wise-up and avoids dumb-down?
the Physicist's Domain
is Knowledge for Use?
can be overcome
we don't succomb to temptation
take it too easy...
be offered by schoolmates...
surely be importuned by ad writers...
the "Platinum Plover Egg":-)
"Be a swift,
not a gull."
and swifts: Put 'em up!
and swifts: Put 'em down!
can, and we've got to, do better..."
can. Everybody should try.
is full of traps for the beast that cannot learn."
different directions to look at it from:
#1 dumb-down trap.
common logic misperceptions
is not what it seems
Vinci Days, 2004
power of science that has given us our 2004 technology derives from several
simple human insights out of the past several centuries: Copernicus's revolutions,
Newton's motions, understanding of the steam engine, electricity and magnetism
(from Maxwell thru Einstein), the quantum mysteries, and the information
knowledge about these insights tends to be no more powerful than the misconceptions
they replaced--in fact, the knowledge too often is the old
misconception. Very few students who learn Newton's first law understand
that he had shown that motion
does not imply a force. So it is similarly with other science since
1685. Misconceptions rule--no power there!
invokes human insight that dodges both wishful thinking and oversimplification.
There's hidden, unrealized power in that,
and we need it to guide all our decisions.
other misconceptions lack power?
is the source of the power?
the power be with us in politics?
Office of Transportation
health in Portland--bicycling
United Mountain Peddlers
Watch for a new
biking map of Forest Park
Portland is very
1995, best cycling city in the USA according to Bicycling Magazine.
makes Portland so bike friendly?
under the north-bound onramp to I-5 at Terwilliger Blvd. It's a segment
of Trail #4 of the SW Urban Trails
a new trail
and sheltered from the rain by, a freeway on ramp
furnishes a much-needed connection.
nature of our world was one of the discoveries of science which remains
merely magical to many. Lottery and casino operators take advantage
of those for whom that magic remains invisible, yet to be mastered.
Perhaps, too, they have yet to see the harmful lure of the desirable drawing
their attentions away from the undesirable. PAP.
much may remain mere magic rather than powerful knowledge. For example,
and heat are two of the 19th century's powerful statistical tools
that stubbornly remain in deep shadows of human minds, mysterious concepts
that get confused with mundane meanings illuminated only by flickering
candlelight or no light at all. Temperature is a parameter in a statistical
distribution, and heat is energy transferred solely because of a temperature
difference. Both are usually confused with each other and mean little
more than a sensation we get from receptors in our skin. Understanding...
then there was the declaration by the news media in November 2000 that
statistics ceased to apply in Palm Beach Co. Fla where an exit poll was
found not to correctly inform of the outcome of a crucial vote. At
least, very few seemed to recogize that we need to know why.
her patterns mostly on an
to us, that is -- look below at June 2004.
put their filbert in their choice.
win, should a person switch or stay?
statistical truths were invisible...
navigate with their perception of the direction and strength of the polarization
of the sky's blue light.
see the profound color shift (huge variation in ultraviolet) in sunlight
as the sun moves higher or lower in the sky. We don't see it because
we are blind to ultraviolet.
We do or don't get sunburned and don't understand why.
is vastly superior to that of human for reasons that humans must apply
their sharpest mental tools to comprehend...and we can never experience
discovers magic, magic we had gone (almost) forever without recognizing.
many of earth's creatures discovered much of that magic millions of years
before human science was even a gleam in a human eye or mind.
you think of any examples?
poet -- born in
Oregon City, 1852
Author of "The Man
With a Hoe"
by the weight of centuries he leans
his hoe and gazes on the ground...
Phillip A. Marquam
land developer --
moved to Oregon, 1851
player in the mystery of the up to
95 impossible blocks shown on most city maps
there a spelling error here?
are there really two different names?
is Body Mass Index, a person's weight in kilograms divided by the
square of his or her height in meters. BMI is the epidemiologist's
measure of overweight and of obesity. The U.S. has an obesity
epidemic of alarming proportions.
U.S. citizens measure their weight in pounds and their height in feet and
inches. Some U.S. citizens can easily convert their weight to kilograms
and their height to meters--especially if they know that a meter is 39.37
inches and a kilogram is 2.205 pounds. Becoming able to make
such conversions is one of the most important first
steps toward understanding science.
of evolution is one of science's most important insights. Obesity
used to give an evolutionary advantage. But the world is not simple
and changes happen. Simplemindedness is a dangerous human failure
to follow the human evolutionary paths which have led to science, our most
potent product of evoltuion, and our most powerful response to change.
recognizes that seeking disconfirmations is absolutely necessary and that
ignoring disconfirmations in favor of pleasant confirmations is a "fatal
error" in information use. Obesity is
powerfully encouraged by advertising, a profession based on passionate
pursuit of pleasant confirmations. And so advertising, our most prevalent
form of propaganda, has become a poision
to science. It teaches that PAP is acceptable.
PAP like the plague!
values are rapidly increasing.
are metric: how to convert units?
. . . too much PAP??
3D Center of Art and Photography
1928 NW Lovejoy
Open 1-5 pm, Friday
has a new center dedicated to stereoscopic images.
you see there?
The city attempted
to limit murals to those made for artistic expression while not allowing
those made for commercial advertising. The courts found that
thusly restricting expression based on content is a violation of the First
New regulations for
murals are currently being considered that will encourage artistic expression
and discourage what a majority of the public perceives as blight
in most billboards.
Watch here for further
are part of our public art.
attitude toward murals is being reexamined.
The parking lot
is on Cornell Ave at the crossing of the Wildwood Trail (mile 4.96--Upper
McCleay Park). Wildwood trail goes from here to Newberry Rd
(mile 30.16) and in that distance crosses Germantown Rd at mile 24.63,
the only road that has vehicular traffic in that 25.20 miles.
The walkers in the
picture are at mile 24.4, approaching Germantown road. MAP
within a city
wildness is the preservation of the Earth."
Somewhere in Portland is a parking
lot next to a trail which a person could take and walk or run continuously
on that same trail for 25.2 miles crossing a road with automobile traffic
at only one place along that 25.2 miles. The entire route is within
Portland city limits.
that parking lot?
the other end of the 25.2 mi?
that one traffic-bearing road?