Friday, November 30, 2007

Interviewing G-d

If I could ever interview G-d these are the types of questions I would ask the almighty

1. How old is the Universe?
2. Does the Universe have purpose?
3. Does life have purpose?
4. Is randomness the driving force behind evolution?
5. Did Jesus exist? Who was he?
6. Who shot Kennedy? Was there really a conspiracy?
7. Are ghosts real?
8. Is their order underneath quantum fuzziness?
9. Will humanity survive the century?
10. What percentage of intelligence on anerage is genetic?
11. Did you really communicate with Abraham, Issac and Jacob, Moses and the other prophets in the way the Bible states? Were these individuals even real?
12. Was the Torah really given on Mount Sinai?
13. How much truth is there to the Buddhist concept of Enlightenment?
14. Is Karma real?
15. What other figures throughout history have you communicated with?
16. Did Shakespeare really write all his plays? If not who is the unknown author? Johnson, Marlowe or Bacon?
17. Why didn't you prevent the holocaust?
18. What is the purpose of Evil?
19. What absolutes should one follow?
20. Why are human beings so weak?
21. Is knowledge finite?
22. Do angels exist?
23. What happens to us after we die?
24. What really is consciousness?
25. Why did Hitler not give the deciding order at Dunkirk?
26. Does extra-terrestrial life exist? If so is it intelligent life and will we make contact with it?
27. Will humanity colonize other planets?
28. Will Cancer be cured? How about AIDS?
29.Why have the Jews suffered throughout history?
30. Is ESP real?
31. Is Free Will an illusion?
32. Who built the Pyramids? Stonehenge? Easter Island Statues?
33. Was Atlantis ever real?
34. Who wrote the Bible? To what extent were they divinely inspired?
35. Is there any truth to reincarnation?
36. Is there any truth to Mind/Body Dualism?
37. Is Time Travel possible?
38. Do multiverses exist?
39. Will Islamo-Fascism be defeated?
40. How long will the State of Israel survive?
41. Will the Messiah ever come?
42. What diseases will be of historical significance only..... one hundred years hence?
43. How do you measure success?
44. Is the Speed of Light truly an upper limit?
45. Is Irreducible complexity in Biology a reality or an oversight?
46. What is the best type of test for intelligence?
47. What are the lower limits on the 100m, metric mile and marathon running times?
48. Will England ever win the World Cup again?
49. What advice should I give my children as a father?
50. How best can I overcome my weaknesses?

Musings of the Mind

There is no order to these realizations…which is exactly how I want it for now….. if one must call it a stream of consciosness

1. I am a compassionate person but not a bleeding heart. Bleeding hearts sicken me.

2. I become bored very easily. Challenge me or else I drift off.

3. The five areas of science that interest me the most are: Modern Physics, Psychometrics, Mechanics, Evolutionary Theory and Kinesiology.

4.Stupid People annoy me… and I mean really annoy me.

5. What the world needs is more intelligent generalists. What it has in abundance is a cacophony of half-witted specialists.

6. Logic and Reason are paramount to my thinking. On observation though it seems to be a peripheral issue with most of humanity.

7. I enjoy following politics – especially analyzing election results and proposed policy.
I am a strong opponent of Islamo-Fascism, Communism, Marxism, Fascism, Leftism and the various incarnations of radicalism. I champion the conservation of the Western Tradition of excellence and believe that the gains of the enlightenment and scientific rationalism must be guarded at all costs.

8. I support a women’s right to choose. However I am opposed to late term Partial Birth Abortion which I consider to be ethically unsound.

9. I take much pride in the Jewish gifts to humanity. These include the vast and disproportionate (with respect to population size) contributions to:
Physics, Chemistry, Music, Art, Medicine, Mathematics, Philosophy, Theology, Economics, Social Sciences etc.

10. I believe in G-d but I also believe that G-d is not definable and is essentially unknowable (the Kabbalistic concept of Ein Sof makes much sense). I do see G-d as omnipotent but also unknowable. I reject deism as I believe that it is more logical to believe that G-d continues to influence the universe. In short I am a scientific theist.

11. I reject intelligent design and see it as an instrument of selective scientific cherry picking.

12. Global warming appears to be a real phenomenon however I am skeptical with respect to the notion that humanity is the chief driver of the trend. Nevertheless I still believe that it is imperative that humanity reduce its Carbon footprint. I am opposed to Kyoto as I see it as an economic sell out to China and India that will make environmental conditions worse. I consider myself a realistic environmentalist and I am not at all supportive of the Green Movement hysteria that has engulfed so many in the West.

13. I am a strong supporter of the State of Israel but have accepted the fact that it is only a matter of time before a likely Palestinian State will exist in the West Bank . Only time will tell if the West Bank State will be viable. I am moderately pessimistic as I have little faith in the Arab political mindset.

14. I support the death penalty for special cases – serial killers for example. The execution should be carried out by firing squad as I believe it to be a more humane alternative to lethal injections, gas and the electric chair.

15. I would classify myself economically as a Classic Liberal – I support Free Enterprise, private ownership of property and low taxes. I do however see the ever important need for government regulation of some industries especially health, utilities, mass transportation etc. I therefore am not a libertarian although I can relate with earnest to what they have to say.

16. I am an opponent of dogma although I am fully aware of the danger of my own views becoming a personal dogma.

17. Mathematics is a very useful tool in understanding the universe (or modeling it rather). It is ultimately limited in that it is not verifiable in and of itself. All practioners of mathematics including physicists, economists, engineers, ecologists and chemist must constantly remind themselves of this inherent bias. Having said this, I do not believe that thgere is any other tool other than rigorous empiricism is more suited to advancing human knowledge.

18. I am extremely passionate about teaching but realistic nevertheless. I have very little patience for students who do not wish to learn, are loathe to think and consistently choose the path of least resistance in their studies.

19. The Cult of Self-Esteem and its twin sister ‘the-blame-others’ mentality has probably done more harm for education than any other movement in the history of pedagogy.
Education schools are for the most part nesting grounds for second grade intellectuals.

20. Capitalism and Free Enterprise systems are not synonymous. The former rejoices in oligarchy. The latter detests it.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Top 100 Soccer Stars of all-time

I personally find this list - a product of the Association of Football Statisticians - to be way off base.
I have colour coded various names with my own interpretation.
Red - Should not be on this list all.
Green - are rated too high. Should receive a lower ranking but still remain on the list.
Blue - are rated too low. Need a higher ranking.
Black - about right more or less (the Goldilocks option)

16 Wonderful Players missing from this list:
George Best, Gianfranco Zola, Bobby Moore, Stanley Matthews, Josef Masopust, Garrincha (should be in the Top 10 never mind the Top 100), Jairzinho, Just Fontaine, Roger Milla, Jimmy Greaves, Sandor Kocsis, Gento, Eric Cantona, Ian Rush, Lev Yashin and Lato.

1.Pele (Brazil)
2.Ronaldo (Brazil)
3.Romario (Brazil) - 30 at best.
4.Luis Figo (Portugal) - shouldn't be in the top 40
5.Zinedine Zidane (France)
6.Diego Maradona (Argentina)
7.Lothar Matthaus (Germany)
8.Gerd Muller (Germany)
9.Franz Beckenbauer (Germany)
10.Cafu (Brazil)
11.Roberto Carlos (Brazil)
12.Marco van Basten (Holland)
13.Michel Platini (France)
14.Rivaldo (Brazil)
15.Paolo Maldini (Italy)
16.Zico (Brazil)
17.Raul (Spain)
18.Ruud Gullit (Holland)
19.Eusebio (Portugal)
20.Ferenc Puskas (Hungary)
21.Johan Cruyff (Holland) - should be Top 10
22.Alfredo di Stefano(Argentina) - Top 10 as well
23.Bobby Charlton (England)
24.Jurgen Klinsmann (Ger)
25.Kenny Dalglish (Scotland)
26.Ali Daei (Iran)
27.Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
28.Gabriel Batistuta (Argentina)
29.Michael Laudrup (Denmark)
30.Hristo Stoichkov (Bulgaria)
31.Dennis Bergkamp (Holland)
32.Frank Rijkaard (Holland)
33.Thierry Henry (France)
34.Pavel Nedved (Czech Rep)
35.Gheorghe Hagi (Romania)
36.Peter Schmeichel(Denmark)
37.Andrei Shevchenko (Ukraine)
38.Sepp Maier (Germany)
39.Didier Deschamps (France)
40.Lilian Thuram (France)
41.Enzo Francescoli (Uruguay)
42.Hakan Sukur (Turkey)
43.Paolo Rossi (Italy)
44.David Beckham (England)
45.Jean-Pierre Papin (France)
46.Kevin Keegan (England)
47.Marcel Desailly (France)
48.Oliver Kahn (Germany)
49.Alessandro Costacurta (Ita)
50.Clarence Seedorf (Holland)
51.Dino Zoff (Italy)
52.Patrick Kluivert (Holland)
53.Jari Litmanen (Finland)
54.Daniel Passarella (Arg)
55.Bixente Lizarazu (France)
56.Gary Lineker (England)
57.Ronaldhino (Brazil) - should be Top 20
58.Sylvain Wiltord (France)
59.Bebeto (Brazil)
60.Alessandro Del Piero (Italy)
61.Davor Suker (Croatia)
62.Ryan Giggs (Wales)
63.David Trezeguet (France)
64.Demetrio Albertini (Italy)
65.Patrick Vieira (France)
66.Jurgen Kohler (Germany)
67.Laurent Blanc (France)
68.Michael Owen (England)
69.Youri Djorkaeff (France
70.Frank De Boer (Holland)
71.Emilio Butragueno (Spain)
72.Hugo Sanchez (Mexico)
73.Rudi Voller (Germany)
74.Djalma Santos (Brazil)
75.Giacinto Facchetti (Italy)
76.Kanu (Nigeria)
77.Franco Baresi (Italy)
78.Gianni Rivera (Italy)
79.Roberto Baggio (Italy)
80.Oscar Ruggeri (Argentina)
81.Gheorghe Popescu(Romania)
82.Jon D. Tomasson (Denmark)
83.Raymond Kopa (France)
84.Carlos Valderrama (Colombia)
85.Rui Costa (Portugal)
86.Gary Neville (England)
87.Edgar Davids (Holland)
88.Claudio Taffarel (Brazil)
89.Paul Scholes (England)
90.Diego Simeone (Argentina)
91.Bryan Robson (England)
92.Roy Keane (Rep of Ireland)
93.Brian Laudrup (Denmark)
94.Henrik Larsson (Sweden)
95.Fabien Barthez (France)
96.Michael Ballack (Germany)
97.Jan Koller (Czech Republic)
98.Edwin van der Sar (Holland)
99.Robert Pires (France)
100.Johan Neeskens (Holland)

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Cumulative Unit Assignment - Physics - Grade 12

For all High School Physics Teachers working on the Energy and Momentum Sections
please feel free to borrow from this Cumulative Unit Project that my colleagues and I helped develop.

Cumulative Unit Project


1. An analysis of Automobile safety and automobile collisions.
2. Examination of a design to reduce collision frequency and promote vehicle safety.


Students will:

Describe the physics of automobile collisions in terms of momentum, energy, force, impulse, displacement and acceleration.

Analyze video segments of automobile collisions. Noting all physical features present and absent
Describe the process of accident reconstruction.
Outline methods that safety administrators use to ensure highway and general road safety.

Teacher will provide:

Some class time to work on the project
Links to Accident Reconstruction sites:
· A Rubric for Evaluation
· Organizing student Groups (no more than three students per group).

Student Groups will be responsible for:

· Group Organization and Division of Labour
· Literature search
· a well-defined project proposal for the video analysis of automobile collisions which includes (1) a statement of the purpose, (2) a step-by-step procedure for collecting data from the video segments, and (3) a clearly-defined procedure for interpreting experimental data.
· A model based simulation of an accident – to be designed by the group.
· A proposal for safety features (in and out) of the vehicles to prevent such accidents or in the worst case reduce their severity.
· One Report per student showing: experimental procedure, literature survey, experimental tables, any graphs, results, the discussion of automobile safety.

Key Questions to think about:

Use free-body diagram analyses to describe the forces acting upon cars prior to a collision and during collisions.
Define and distinguish between elastic and inelastic collisions and relate such terms to automobile collisions.
Define impulse and momentum and use the impulse-momentum change theorem to quantitatively and qualitatively analyze automobile collisions.
Explain the law of momentum conservation and use it to perform mathematical analyses of collisions.
Describe how the vector nature of momentum can be used to mathematically analyze collisions.
Use the work equation and the work energy-theorem to explain the role of crumple zones and chassis deformation in a collision and explain how measurements of the amount of chassis deformation can be used to make estimates of pre-collision speeds of vehicles.
Describe the methods used, the questions asked, and the information sought in an accident reconstruction scenario.
Identify a few safety devices used in automobiles and use diagrams and words to explain the underlying science.

Source of idea for this project:

Ed School Baloney

I graduated teacher’s college with 6A+’s and 2A’s as well as three excellent references from host practicum teachers. However the in house university program itself had many flaws as my point-by-point synopsis below reveals.

The following is a list of personal conclusions reached during my one year period of pedagogical training..

1.The vast majority of in-class assignments were a complete waste of time and had nothing whatsoever to do with the actual practice of teaching.

2. 95% of the usefulness of the program is realized during the practicum. Regular Classes serve more a time wasting functionality than anything else.

3. University Education Profs know almost nothing about Class Room Management - Advice often centered on the fluffy and short sighted ethos ‘ that class room management problems disappear when the students are engaged.’

4. Education Profs for the most part are fixated on influencing areas of perceived social justice – Skill training as a primary focus often plays second fiddle to the first initiative.

5. There is almost no testing of content knowledge for subject specific teachers – no wonder so many students eventually find themselves at the receiving end of instruction by those whose competency is questionable.

6. Student Entertainment teaching ('Kewl' Education) has risen in status to a point where it appears to have trumped content.

7. Education of the Gifted has far less of a priority than that of the academically poor.

8. Harsh criticism should be avoided by teachers for fear of injuring the self esteem of the student.

8A. Modern educators don’t really believe in the idea of a due date or even a deadline for that matter.

9. IQ testing and the Genetic basis for Intelligence are concepts which are very much out of vogue.

10. Constructivism is seen as the pinnacle of education theory even though its application outside a strong academic class is largely limited.

11. Many Educators are obsessed with the idea of racism and like Diogenes searching for one honest man - Ed Profs are often on the hunt for racism in areas where it clearly doesn’t even exist.

12. Every student failure can be somehow excused.

13. Multiple Intelligence Theory is championed as the correct way of looking at the world despite the fact that not a thread of evidence exists for its foundation.

14. Failure of a child to learn is almost always blamed on the teacher in the trenches.

15. Mediocrity is commended. If students can’t make it - its preferable to lower the all-around expectations.

16. The Lesson Plans that are demanded from teacher students are excessively bloated, impractical and of no substantial value in real world situations.

17. There is hardly any course work instructing a person to deal with the bureaucracies of education system and day-to-day paper shuffling.

18. Many University Professors see teachers as Social Workers, Psychologists, Surrogate Parents, political activists, environmental advocates. As for being a disseminator of knowledge – don't bet on it.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Endorsing Rudy

I am not American so I can't vote in next years' Presidential Election but if I could this is the man who would earn my vote

Rudy Giuliani

For more see:

My reasons for supporting Rudy are:
1. His tough stance against international terrorism
2. His proven track record of accomplishment as mayor of New York
3. A strong bipartinsan history in politics (ie. he can work with the Dems)
4. An unbashed stream of pragmitism
5. He has an admirable record in crisis situations.
6. Is Fiscally conservative and socially liberal.
7. Has Blue and Red State Appeal
8. Will take a tough stance against illegal immigration.
9. Has an excellent understanding of matters of the judiciary.
10. Supports a women's right to choose but opposes partial birth abortion.
11. Opposes the idea of 'bigger government'.
12. Champions School Choice.

The only point I disagree with him on is his opposition to Gay Marriage but then nobody is perfect.