30 January 2016

Musing About Time

Time is a curious concept. For sensory creatures, the apparent passage of time is convenient construct and persistent metaphor to the experience of past, present, and future.

Consensus among cosmologists is that the universe is 14 billion years old. It doesn't help much in our reckoning of time to know a life span is essentially nothing on a cosmic scale.

Clocks are mechanical contraptions calibrated to predicable phenomena like the rotation of the Earth which conveniently stages a predicable sunrise and a sunset.

It doesn't help our understanding of time that the rotation of the Earth is slowing imperceptibly due to the tidal friction of its Moon. Fortunately for our comforting sense of clockwork consistency, the slowing rotation of the Earth is negligible. Today's days are only about 1.7 milliseconds longer than 100 years ago.

Time is a common variable that pops up in classical mechanics and the mathematics of physics. Still, physicists seem far from understanding, let alone explaining, the flow of time.
Time exists in physics, but the flow of time does not. Physicists do not understand the flow of time. In any given coordinate system, we can be at rest in space, but in that same coordinate system, we cannot be at rest in time. Time has this qualitatively different feature. It progresses.
Richard Muller
A moment is central to our sense of reality. Yet a moment is ephemeral in the most infinitesimal sense of the word.
Einstein despaired of his inability to explain the flow of time. But Einstein, despite his despair, moved forward and showed that the rate of the flow of time depends on both velocity and gravity. That suggests strongly that the flow of time does not originate in the human mind, but has a true external physical reality.
Richard Muller
A reassuring, yet possibly erroneous analogy of a moment in time is to visualize the still frame of a movie sandwiched with an imperceptibly small delta before the next the still frame.
Every moment is as real as every other. Every 'now,' when you say, 'This is the real moment,' is as real as every other 'now' - and therefore all the moments are just out there. Just as every location in space is out there, I think every moment in time is out there, too.
Brian Greene
For now it must suffice to consider time a sensory snapshot meant to be experienced to the fullest extent possible.
Who would then deny that when I am sipping tea in my tearoom I am swallowing the whole universe with it and that this very moment of my lifting the bowl to my lips is eternity itself transcending time and space?
D.T. Suzuki


Light Rail Platform
Juxtaposition describes my core motivation in recording mobile iPhone images during my commute to and from a consulting gig in the North Loop.

Juxtaposition is a noun. My preferred definition is,
noun. the fact of two things being seen or placed close together with contrasting effect.
For me the attention grabbing draw frequently involves the contrasting effect of more than two things.The things I see include patterns, lines, light, and frequently something unusual in the ordinary.

My commute is consciously more stimulating when I'm open to the contrasting effect of a chance occurrence.

I don't place the scenes. I adjust my frame of reference. I change the position of my camera frame to discover some contrasting effect that resonates with me.

Whether or not we're consciously aware of it, our minds curate what we see.

Ford Center Lobby / Historic Exterior

Most often the juxtaposition that draws me in for closer consideration are contrasting spatial elements. On rare occasions, the juxtaposition is both spatial and temporal as with the historic photograph of the street car era Ford Center exterior juxtaposed within a view of the present day lobby (above).

Advertising Wrap on Light Rail Train

Even more rare is the juxtaposition of the language we use in naming and distinguishing objects, like the car on the train car seen in the advertising wrap covering a train car (above).

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12 January 2016

We Revolve

Revolution comes from the Latin verb revolvere meaning to revolve. Revolution was originally applied to the motions of planets.

Revolution was fundamental to Copernicus' world-changing heliocentric model of planetary movement. Copernican heliocentrism was outlined in Copernicus' treatise On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres (De revolutionibus orbium coelestium), published in 1543.

Copernicus' model is noteworthy because it displaced Earth from the center of the uni­verse and offered an alternative to Ptolemy's geocentric model proposed in the 2nd century AD.

That revolution is now the mental hook in the advertising vinyl wrap on the light rail car I'm about to board shouldn't discourage us from revolution.

Blue Line Train, Target Field Station
by Bob MacNeal

09 January 2016

Mythical Unnamed Creek

Winter descended last night. I'm drifting toward a summer solstice outing on some mythical unnamed creek in a familiar spot. A Rainbow, or the occasional Westslope Cutty plucked from chilly meltwater are piscatorially sublime, but seem more like that odd illusion of form that bounds off daubs of pigments than something I'd gut & fry in a camp skillet. So in my mind I'm casting a hookless woolly bugger into sparkling riffles for the pleasure of standing in rushing water.