Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Ronyak News

Hey hey. It's April. There was an Easter in there, and a birthday on April 5th for Cori, and her grandmother in Idaho Falls died the same day. There is a baby due in two weeks, and the circle of life goes on. Queen Elizabeth of England had her birthday today, and we received chocolate, bagels and bouquets of flowers at work for Administrative Professionals Day. I have the bus for sale on craigslist, the landlord wants it out of the driveway in two weeks. The weeding and mowing has been my exercise lately and we saw 2012 and A Serious Man on DVD this week. I got to read David Livingston's edit to a screenplay I sold him and am so happy to see what a great comedy he has made out of this property. The Gameshow screenplay that Lisa Hepner and I are writing together is coming together nicely and we'll start marketing it next week hopefully. Here's a copy of my latest blog post at work. People are responding with comments about the shrinking of things.

Ronyak: From the Large Hadron Collider to Lilliput

Daniel Ronyak, a senior accounting technician in Comparative Medicine, has agreed to post his offbeat observations and often tongue-in-cheek ideas here as they occur.

The Large Hadron Collider in Geneva is stirring up the physics world in a big way—ironically, with tiny particles building up speed and leaping toward unprecedented collisions. (Is there a connection to the “Portland Boom”? “Enquiring” minds want to know.)
Speaking of leaps and collisions, March Madness is over and the tournament is complete—and over the last few weeks you’ve likely seen the best leaping ability that humans have to offer. But why do we lack the hops of even a tiny flea, which can sky seventy times its own height? Is there some gain in buoyancy at that size, with respect to air mass?
It’s a weird thing, the size of a species: What would happen if a species such as a frog were able to be bred down to the size of a flea? (Some frogs are very tiny as it is.) Would it increase its leaping ability? And if you bred a dog to a size smaller than the frog, what would stop the frog from sizing up that meal? What would it mean for an amphibian to change its diet from insects to mammals?
This bizarre discussion is where physics meets evolutionary biology. As genetics branch out, where will the discussion go? Is there an optimum ratio at which humans could choose to live more efficiently in the future? Is Gulliver’s Travels more forward-looking than we realize? (“Going Lilliputian” would save planetary resources, would it not?) What an arcane world our huge skyscrapers will be, if in the future we are the size of the flea.

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