Saturday, January 31, 2009

The February stories at include
1. Landing an airplane on water --- why, exactly, is it so dangerous and how did Captain Sullenberger do it so well?
2. "Hang on a minute, lads. I've got a great idea." How would you solve the greatest cliffhanger in movie history, the ending to the "The Italian Job" in which we last see Charlie Croker and his mates on a bus that dangles over a steep mountainside in the Alps?
3. How can you crush an exceptionally strong railroad tanker car in minutes with nothing more than steam and a really big physics mistake?
4. Why do penguins huddle in groups of many thousands?
5. Pub trick of the month --- balancing forks, spoons, and other objects on a match stick that straddles the edge of a drinking glass.
6. Article of the month: the strange acoustics in the whispering gallery in the dome at Saint Paul's Cathedral in London. A whisper can be heard a surprising distance if you face the wall of the gallery but not if you face away from it.
The photo here was taken by Tara Peppard as I was about to stick my fingers into molten lead (see the pot on the left) in front of my class at Cleveland State University. I am showing that I have all of my fingers intact, at least before I do the stunt.


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