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PhilO

Excellent little Java applets for math/science/engineering

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I ran across this site today:

http://www.falstad.com/mathphysics.html

Some very cool little Java applets educationally covering many areas of math, physics, and engineering.

What a neat site, Phil! Thank you for the link.

From the same page, but omitting non-essential info:

Finding the Speed of Light with Marshmallows

The activity requires a microwave oven, a microwave-safe casserole dish, a bag of marshmallows, and a ruler.

First, open the marshmallows and place them in the casserole dish, completely covering it with a layer one marshmallow thick.

Next, put the dish of marshmallows in the microwave and cook on low heat.

Heat the marshmallows until they begin to melt in four or five different spots.

Remove the dish from the microwave and observe the melted spots. Take the ruler and measure the distance between the melted spots. You will find that one distance repeats over and over. This distance will correspond to half the wavelength of the microwave, about 6 cm. Now turn the oven around and look for a small sign that gives you the frequency of the microwave. Most commercial microwaves operate at 2450 MHz.

All you do now is multiply the frequency by the wavelength. The product is the speed of light.

The final and most important step:

Conclude the experiment by adding 1 T butter and 2 cups Rice Krispy; enjoy the sweetness of your new knowledge.

When I discovered (way before they added the instructions on the box) the quickness of making Rice Krispy Treats in the microwave, I thought it was better than sliced bread. BTW, you use 40 large marshmallows. Butter your fingers so you can easily flatten the mixture in the nearest laboratory pan. A little radioactive material won't affect the flavor at all. B)

If you have Netfix, "Watch Instantly" is currently running a documentary on the Kellogg brothers. I thought it was good - except they missed the point that W. K. Kellogg was the real hero - which is not surprising, but always disppointing for me.

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Finding the Speed of Light with Marshmallows

I noticed that one, pretty clever use of everyday materials (though I don't have marshmallows.)

About Kellogg, yes, it's unfortunate that time isn't spent in school systematically studying the life and nature of past and present business giants. If honestly presented, that alone would probably do a lot to inspire new future entrepeneurs and inhibit anti-business sentiments. But the Left learned early on to control the schools and the newspapers...

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Awesome site PhilO! I have bookmarked it along with my other Java resources.

For those of you that need to present complex data visually, may I recommend the Prefuse site: The Prefuse visualization toolkit

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