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Varun's Blog - At the Speed of Light !

A fact is a simple statement that everyone believes. It is innocent, unless found guilty. A hypothesis is a novel suggestion that no one wants to believe. It is guilty, until found effective. ~Edward Teller

A very warm welcome to my th reader.Why speed of light ? Well, the aim of this blog is to reach the impossible by exploration and scientific fervor. Exploration never ends, knowledge never dies but Speed of Light can be achieved ....

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Monday, July 30, 2007

Far side of the moon

So has any human ever seen the far side of moon? I guess, not ! Because this side of the moon always stays away from us. First directly observed by human eyes when the Apollo 8 mission orbited the Moon in 1968. It includes the largest known impact feature in the Solar System: the South Pole-Aitken basin. A good sight for putting radio telescopes !

The Moon now rotates once as it orbits the Earth, allowing for the same side to always face the Earth so that the far side remains a mystery to any Earth-bound observer.

Resources / Read on the web
NASA to put man on far side of moon
Lunar and Planetary Institute
Far side of moon movie (2005)


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Powerful new iMac


Monday, July 23, 2007

UFO sightings in Karnal (Punjab)

On 8th Juily 2007, people in Karnal (Haryana) saw two blue colored lights for almost 2 hours in the sky. The lights seemed to hover all over their locality.

The two lights in the sky were nearly half the size of the moon. The strange lights were seen at around 10:00pm IST. The lights were mind-bogglingly wandering in the sky. People reported that they hadn't seen anything like this before.

The sky presents a beautiful scene every night. One can see thousands of stars and the moon on a clear night sky. But on 8th July 2007 when the people in Karnal looked at the sky, they saw something astounding at around 9pm. Both these lights were encircling one another. The news spread like fire. It was not long when people started to explore the reason behind this strange incidence in the sky. Some of the intelligent ones started saying that this light is a result of some circus show nearby. At around 10pm space scientists started to handle the dispute. They prudently explained that these lights are not from any source on earth. If they had been sent from earth, the lights would have distinct tails. This is a common observation when we switch on a torch in a dark room. Therefore, it was concluded that these lights were not from Earth. The lights were so big that they couldn't have been a star and no planet can come so close to earth. Though the people were feeling astonished by such an incidence but they were also curious to know the reason behind this strange scene. But nobody could find out the exact reason!

PS.: The article above is an original translation from Hindi language to English - done by "Varun Khetarpal". Copy and Paste is not allowed without prior permission from the blog author. You may use this article anywhere on the internet without permission, provided you mention the author name and link back to this blog.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Beat the brand - Sony Ericsson w300i !

I finally have my hands on w300i. It is just awesome. Excellent features. Battery life is commendable. The claimed talk time is up to 9.5 hours and the claimed standby time is up to 400 hours. The comapny tests reached about 7 hours talk time and standby of 1.5 weeks. I am experiencing the pre-configured Cingular model. Sony Ericsson W300i has a Memory Stick Micro (M2) slot for storage and supports up to 1GB Memory Stick Micro cards. Sony Ericsson W300i supports a wide range of music and video formats including MP3, AAC, AMR, MIDI, IMY, EMY, WAV (16 kHz max) and MP4 as well as 3GP and 3GPP for streaming content. The music quality via the included Sony Ericsson stereo earbud headset is great with clear and crisp sound, full and deep bass and no audio distortion or noise at all. The camera is decent enough - a VGA camera with 4x digital zoom.


  • Camera 0.3-megapixel (VGA)
  • Digital zoom 4x
  • Video recording
  • Media Player
  • MegaBass™
  • Music tones
  • PlayNow™
  • RSS feeds
  • Web browser Access NetFront™ Web Browser

  • 3D games
  • Java
  • Radio
  • Video viewing
  • Bluetooth™
  • Infrared port
  • Modem
  • Synchronisation
  • USB mass storage
  • USB support
  • Email
  • MMS (Multimedia Messaging)
  • Predictive text input
  • Sound recorder
  • Text messaging (SMS)
  • Polyphonic ringtones
  • Speakerphone
  • Vibrating Alert
  • Navigation key
  • Picture wallpaper
  • Wallpaper animation
  • Alarm clock
  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Contacts
  • Flight mode
  • Notes
  • Phone book
  • Stopwatch
  • Tasks
  • Timer


Monday, July 16, 2007

Haven't seen Bengaluru ? Two days experience !

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Yes. You would wanna note that change - its no more Bangalore now! I don't want to be very descriptive because I am little lazy about writing big essays which reflect my personal life. It was an early flight to Bangalore. Bengaluru (getting used to it!) weather was just awesome. It was very pleasant and extraordinarily cool. One enjoyed walking on roadsides. But believe me, the traffic conditions are worse than Delhi. One thing I noticed, unlike Delhi, the three wheeler drivers have to display a copy of their license on the vehicle.

The biggest and the most famous mall in Bangalore is "FORUM". Oh boy ! It was so huge. The 6 level parking excluding the two under-ground floors were literally full. So we finally got a place on the terrace to park our car. It was probably because on Saturdays people have a half-working-day. So population tends to get attracted towards this place. There no other way out ! You can't sit at home and make your life boring ...huh?

I roamed around the city in a smart car - Opel Vectra. It has a sensor for almost everything! Detects the air pressure in tyres. Has an inbuilt parking sense technology. It was cool ! I managed to see the Vidhan Sabha, Karnataka High Court, some gardens, malls etc. Now, I would like to conclude. Check the pictures out for more...


Saturday, July 07, 2007

Now grow up !

Hope you understood and liked my previous article. I have explained the rotation concept with utter simplicity. If you haven't read it - you are missing out on something amazingly superb. Scroll down and give it a read. Keeping aside astronomy for a while, Donald has always remained my favourite. Cartoon animations have developed characters which look so real. Way to go - Animation Industry & Walt Disney!

So do you like strategy or mystery solving games? I am sure you have tried the Nicky Bounty. I have played all of them in the series. These are flash games and are very real ! The music and character sounds are too good. Waiting for the two unreleased games - Nearly Departed & The Adventures of Nelly the Wonder Dog! Pinheadgames website comes out with really good games. Check them out !


Thursday, July 05, 2007

Who pushed the Earth in the past ?

Recently, there has been a lot of discussion coming up on the net. Scientists have given an attempt to answer questions like – What existed before the Big Bang? The biggest hurdle in front of us is that while studying the earlier phase of the universe, calculations fail. This is because one has to divide by zero several times to reach a mathematically correct solution which explains the state of the universe just before the Big Bang. They have altered their calculations and methods to avoid divisions by zero and have tagged along a different approach to show that universe had a finite density and we can find out what existed before the Big Bang. They suggest merging the quantum physics and Einstein’s theory of relativity.
But as the research papers or any material gets confirmed, I will post it here. [link]

Then I went through space videos. One of them was about Apophis asteroid. It will hit us in 2036. The video has been exaggerated a bit showing a complete extinction of life form from earth. It is not true. Read more about the Impact Risk. According to latest updates, as on August 6th, 2006, its imapct has been lowered to Torino Scale 0.

Gradually, as I was winding up the video watching session, I accidentally came across a video titled “Does God Exist?” It has been posted by abcnews.com user. There were a lot of interesting arguments but I would cut down and post the minimum stuff. Watch the video to see the whole debate.

Theist: There needs to be a creator for anything that exists. Everything is created by God. There needs to be a painter for a painting.
Atheist: Then who is the creator of God?
Theist : No one has created God. God is just there as an eternal faith or power in one’s self.
…. and the never ending blah blah blah….

Two friends were heading for a competition. One of them was an Atheist and the other was a Theist. Before leaving for the competition they talked on phone.
Theist: John, I'll pray for your victory today !
Atheist: Thanks. I will think for your victory!

Could you make out the point from this small conversation ?

Well, earlier I had thought of writing an article on M-theory (or String Theory) because
I do know about the fundamentals of the String Theory and understand its application. But trust me, when I came to writing a post on it, I couldn’t do it. Understanding and explaining theories are two completely different tasks. And of course, you need to have the skill to explain complicated things in a simple, clear-cut technique. Also, there are various kinds of string theories, not just one. These theories are interconvertable and then you have the dual of most of these theories. But then I thought of writing about something more interesting. Try answering these questions:

Who pushed our Earth in the past?
Why is it rotating?
Will it continue to rotate?
What would happen if the Earth stops rotating?

Science has progressed so much today that it has answer to almost every question. Curious about astronomy, children do ask startling questions at times that make us spellbound for a moment. For eg. Earth is rotating at an enormous speed of 1100 miles per hour, considering this fact, if someone jumps high up then why doesn’t he land a few miles away from the place he jumped. Now, if our earth stops rotating, what would be the consequences?

Firstly, we need to understand why or what is making the earth rotate continuously. In the early years of the formation of the solar system, the disk of clouds made up of gas and dust started to condense. Gradually, they attained circular stable shapes forming planetary bodies which continued to remain in swirling motion. In the whole process, the sun remained in the center of the swirling disk of gas and dust. As time progressed, accounting to billions of years, the planets came into existence with distinctly separate bodies having a core and crust of their own. Out of the eight planets, the Jovian planets, namely, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune remained gaseous. Let’s understand the concept in a very simple manner. The disk of gas and dust swirled around the sun. It remained captured by the sun’s gravity. Slowly, the planets formed. Now angular momentum needs to be conserved because no external torque is acting on the system, therefore, the planets started rotating. To keep the angular momentum constant, mass distribution lowered (swirling gas condensed into planets) and high orbiting velocity of newly formed planets came into existence.

Now, we are all aware of the fact that there is no need of any external force to keep a ball in rotation. Same is the case with our earth. It doesn’t require any external energy or force to stay in rotational motion. But you would be astonished to know that with the use of extremely accurate atomic clocks it has been found that the rotation is slowly down. One of the reasons for this is Tidal Acceleration. Therefore, the need of Leap Second was felt. Because of changes in dynamic climate and atmospheric pressure, earth’s rotation is affected. NASA’s ESE mission is currently studying more about this.

If the Earth stops rotating, it would produce miraculous results. Firstly, it would highly disturb the earth’s magnetism. Atmospheric disturbance would cease the life on earth. The atmosphere is also rotating with the earth. If earth stops rotating suddenly, high speed winds would sweep the landmasses. Earth just has the right rotation period which helps the living beings to survive. Seismic waves might break the earth apart due to sudden halt in rotation. Moreover, the places on the dark and lightened side of the earth respectively would continue to remain like that.

So does anyone know what is diurnal motion? And folks, do post comments or questions.


The New 7 Wonders : Hamara Taj?

I just put in my vote for the Taj Mahal today, if u haven't, then hurry up, only 1 day left! but isn't this selection process a bit unfair to poorer countries, i mean how many indians actually have access to voting facilites (internet/mobile phone+money). If the Taj Mahal doesn't get in, i'm gonna go crazy!


This is science !

When you are speaking to technically illiterate people you must resort to the plausible falsehood instead of the difficult truth.

Photos of Comet Mcnaught !
Astro-photographer? Send your photos to pics@exploreuniverse.com and have them featured on this blog with your name. Comet Mcnaught : Pictures taken with Nikon D100 on 19/1/07 from Manning Point, northern NSW, Australia by Mr. Peter Enright.
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