Saturday, February 20, 2010

It's here!

Finally! The new is here! not everything works, and it's not all pretty-like yet, but you can get all of our notes for the year! Check back often, as I'll be adding course documents soon. That way, you can just go to the site and download extras if you need them, or catch up if you were absent! Enjoy!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The World's Best Tie Rack!

So here it is, at long last -- my motorized tie rack! All you do is press a button to move in one direction or the other, and the middle button to stop when you see a tie you like. The light goes on automatically. Enjoy a picture and and a video.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

How do you say "2010"?

Sooooo...we were in the 1900's for a while, about 100 years, actually, and saying "1983" or "1999" seemed pretty easy. You'd say it "Ninteen eighty three" or "nineteen ninty nine." But what do we say now that we're in a new decade? According to several online sources, we need to say "Twenty ten," not "two thousand ten." Think about it...would you say "nineteen hundred and eighty three," or "ninteen eighty three?" Very interesting.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Mind, really.

In class, Mary brought up a game in which one uses one's mind to move a ball through a maze. "Impossible!" we all thought. "Utter rubbish!" Well, she was right! The good people at the Mattel Corporation bring you Mindflex, the first board game to use the power of thought to help you play.

To play, you strap on a silly-looking headset and wirelessly connect it to the base unit. Then, you concentrate harder to raise the ball on a jet of air, or concentrate less to lower it. I've searched around, but they're sold out all over. It'd be really nifty to try! Does this mean we're not far off from turning on the TV by just thinking about it? Can Americans really get lazier? Only time can tell!

Monday, December 14, 2009


We've just completed our Calorimetry lab, in which we tried to determine how much energy was contained in a peanut. The object was to burn the peanut to release its energy, and collect that energy in another substance and changing its temperature. Then using an equation (see below), we could calculate how much energy was there. The equation was


Where Q is the energy in joules (what we were looking for), C is the specific heet of the material collecting the heet (measured in J/g·°C), and ΔT is the change in temerpature of the material. For a list of the specific heets of several materials, go here.

We figured out that the amount of energy in a gram of peanut should be about 23,908.57 J, which, if you check out the flames below, you'll see is quite a bit of energy. Most of our values weren't that high, though, because much of the heat ended up escaping into the environment instead of being trapped in the material.

Soot from a burnt peanut provided Shania with some feline artistic inspiration!

These gentlemen found out that some peanuts required more coaxing to light than others...

We kept the window open to prevent the peantus from setting off the fire alarm. This created a breeze and necessitated some creative sheilding.

Various materials, such as the clay seen here, were used to try and funnel heet to the water for capture. Note the temperature probe used.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Kind of Scary....

So this is a paper that a second-grader in my Mom's class (she's a teacher aide back in Buffalo) turned in. In case you can't read the answers that he or she wrote, I've transcribed them here:

1. poo
2. pooop
3. poooop
4. poop
5. pooop
6. pooop
7. pooop
8. pooooop
9. pooooooop
10. poooooop
11. pooop
12. pooop

What is going on with this world?!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Tie Rack!

Ok, so this picture isn't of my tie rack, but it's the same kind. I have better looking ties, though. It's even got a light at the front to illuminate your neckwear on those dark winter mornings.