December 2011 Archives

Last Day of the Year.

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Last Day 2011 035-2.jpgand what a beautiful day it was. With temperatures in the mid 70s I took a hike up A-mountain and shot this view of Tempe.
And look what else I found...

Last Day 2011 048.jpg

Happy New Year!

Do you hear what I hear...

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Xmas 011-1.jpgXmas 002-1.jpgMerry Christmas!


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Decay_snap.jpgI had an old webcam sitting around and got a cheap smoke detector for a couple of bucks to get the small piece of Americium-241 which is used as the ionizing agent.
CMOS_webcam.jpg Am241_scale.jpg
The Am-241 is mainly an alpha and gamma emitter with alpha particles easily blocked.
So I used the CMOS sensor of the disassembled webcam to check for decay.
Placing the little piece of Am-241 on the CMOS covers pretty much all the active region of the sensor. The glass protective piece will block the alpha particles but the gammas make it through and are shown as bright flashes in the recording (YouTube). Pretty cool!

Even more bread.

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Bread 003.jpgMy sourdough starter is still alive and I keep feeding it about once a week which seems to work out well. This time some modification to the recipe.
About 4 cups of sourdough starter, 4 cups King Arthur Flour White Whole Wheat Flour, 1 cup millet, 1 cup sunflower seeds, 1 tbsp each of coriander, aniseed, fennel, caraway seeds, and 1 1/2 tbsp salt. 1 tbsp yeast dissolved in 1 cup water with a little honey.

Knead the dough, let it rise for about 1 hour and bake for about 1 hour.
The whole wheat white flour makes the bread even better than the whole wheat flour I usually use and it makes the flavor of the added seeds more pronounced.
Bread 005.jpg


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Boston MFA 061.jpgAfter all the science at the MRS Fall meeting it was a nice change of pace to have a look at some art. The Museum of Fine Arts is just about one mile from Copley Place, perfect for a little walk.

The museum has a nice Americana section with a huge painting of General Washington in The Passage of the Delaware and also some ancient Egyptian pieces. Check out more pictures in my gallery.

What colors.

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MRS Fall 2011 4th day 016-1.jpg
Quite an intense sunset at the last day of the MRS Fall meeting in Boston. It was a good conference and my talk went quite well, too.


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