Monthly Archives: December 2013

Update on Book Two

The Spiral Slayers: Countdown ArmageddonThinker

Hi! I have some very exciting news about the 2nd book in the series! First the tentative release date is April 2014. But you’re going to get something well before then: ‘The Countdown Teaser’ will be released by mid January 2014! This will be the first part of Countdown Armageddon (The Preface, Chapter 1 and a small part of Chapter 2) plus details of a contest and prizes up for grabs running between the Teaser release and the release of Countdown Armageddon! So put on your science/detective hats and try to figure out some strange things you may not have noticed in Book One ‘Encounters”.

The ‘Teaser’ will give you a taste of what’s coming and present puzzles only the best of you will be able to solve. If you’ve finished ‘Encounters’ you’ve probably have a real good idea of one of the puzzles to be solved.

Development of the Spiral Slayer Universe Part 2 : The Spiral Slayers and the Death of Super Strings

Ten Dimensions of Superstrings
Ten Dimensions of Superstrings

 

Hello! 

This is an interesting, though complex, story! 

Between the late eighties and the early 2000s I was totally into string theory. I was there for the five different theories, the bane worlds and M-theory that joined the five theories. The downfall of superstring theory, at least for myself, was only months away but, in reality, for myself anyway, was already happening due to a number of items. 

I had no issue with string theory’s biggest problem, which was that it could not make any predictions that

An apple

An apple

could readily be tested. Because I was a ‘believer’, I even had my own arguments for this quandary. They went like this: in fact, there were predictions strings could make… it’s just that Relativity and/or quantum mechanics and/or QED had already made these predictions and lab tests had already confirmed them. Not only did it sound good, it was true…for instance, ‘strings’ could absolutely predict gravity but so could an apple. 

The first crack in my stringy beliefs was no more than just an uneasy feeling I got when I heard Mr. Stringman himself–Brian Green—pronounce, “(string theory) is too elegant to be wrong.” OK, I’ve been sitting here for many minutes trying and I cannot explain why this hit me as so wrong. 

 

MTheory

MTheory

There were other minor things—especially ‘M-Theory’ that supposedly explained the five different string theories but not, it seemed, itself. However, the absolute showstopper was the big lie and I’m just now realizing it’s something that’s going to be a little hard to explain but I’ll do my best.  

One bedrock of any theory’s reliability is the level to which the math behind it is finite. That is to say, it produces few or no infinities. It’s called or referred to as the theory’s ‘level of approximation’. The leading contenders in quantum physics—superstrings and Loop Quantum Gravity (LQG)—had both been proven ‘finite’. Article after article since the mid-80s had stated that the superstring theory was proven finite. That foundation supporting string theory, after all these years, was simply a given or, so they said. 

But then…

 

Cut Strings

 

…around 2002 a physicist named Lee Smolin—a giant in the field–was asked to write a report on the state of all the different quantum theories now on the table and, to make a long story short, he discovered that no one had ever proven any of the five string theories to be finite! To my knowledge, no one has done it yet. Evidently, someone, somewhere, at some time had just stated this and everyone had just jumped on board–unbelievable! 

Upon discovering this, personally, I pretty much gave the big finger to string theory. 

Understand that I had based The Spiral Slayers universe on string theory! Bane worlds were playing key parts in the story. I almost completely give up on the story…hell, I almost decided to chuck science and writing sci-fi completely. When a pet theory, one you’ve devoted decades to studying, supporting and believing in turns sour…you basically go through the 5 phases of grief.  I went into a deep depression and stopped all work on The Spiral Slayers book, the trailer and definitely on my reading of science books. 

Of course I bounced back (I’m the original bounce back kid). In the next post, the direction I took.

ChristmasBulbs

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Rusty Williamson

More Handy Office Shortcut Keys (Bold/Italic/Underline/Font Size/how to learn more)

(Beginner) I’m not kidding you, knowing shortcut keys increases your speed enormously. At the end is a table which I will try to provide whenever we discuss shortcut keys. You can print this table* and tape on your monitor as a cheat sheet until you have the ones discussed in this post memorized.

In Word, Excel and almost any time you are working with a formatting text entry application, [CTL]b, [CTL]i and [CTL]u come in handy as turn-on/turn-off Bold, Italics and Underline. There are of course many other keyboard shortcuts (like [CTL]> and [CTL]< for increase/decrease font size) and, to discovery these most applications make it so easy!

Displaying Shortcut Keys (when available) in Office

Displaying Shortcut Keys (when available) in Office

When you want to do something that requires you click on a tool icon (like align center) if you hover over the icon a small window comes up with information–how much depends on you’re settings but the tool name and any shortcut-key associated with it. For instance, align center, says: Center [Ctrl+E] (see table for other alignments). Almost everyone knows that [CTL]x, [CTL]c and [CTL]v act as cut, copy and paste but for those who don’t, we won’t tell and oh, BTW, [CTL]z and [CTL]y act as undo and redo.

*You can print the entire post and cut it out or cut and paste it into Word or EXCEL and print it or, just copy it.

Office Beginner Shortcut Keys

Shortcut KeysResult
[CTRL] bBold
[CTRL] iItalic
[CTRL] uUnderline
[CTRL] >Increase font size
[CTRL] <Decrease font sized
[CTRL] l (that's a lower case L)Left Alignment
[CTRL] eCenter
[CTRL] RRight Alignment
[CTRL] xCut
[CTRL] cCopy
[CTRL] vPaste (I think of a down arrow for 'put here')
[CTRL] zUndo
[CTRL] yRedo