Archive for the ‘movies’ Category


This is a great short that was found by my family a while ago.  If you want to be methaphysical, it describes the research careers (or projects) that don’t fly. The moral is that they should be enjoyed while they last, well, that’s one take on it. The movie scripting is phenomenal and it really makes you think about what’s important.

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There are fun videos of physics in the net. I occasionally look for them for my class, but my results tend to be random. A reasonably good list can be found on a website that specializes on Online education here.

Their list includes one of my favorite demos, which I performed in class this year as well: The Ruben’s tube. It is very cool to do and to watch as well. After I worked it the students clapped. Of course, there was also the time I played the guitar to show harmonics, and the time that a superconductor had issues with going to zero resistance after cooling during class.

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Movies of the week

Yesterday was an official holiday at UCSB. I went to see the new Cohen brothers movie: A serious man.

It is about a physics professor in the late 60’s who is facing tenure and is besieged by all kinds of things that make life not worth living. It is a very dark comedy, in a sense about the meaning of life (or the lack of it). For some strange reason I felt at home in the movie (never mind the fact that I belong to the category of people who can spot errors in the uncertainty formulas as they’re being written on the blackboard, or maybe I didn’t spot it because afterwards it was ok). I recommend that if you are physicist that you go see the movie. You might also feel at home there.

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Laser movie

Clifford produced a really cool movie on the Laser effect, explained so that pretty much anybody can understand it. No calculations required.

To learn more about this, go here.

Here, at the shores, we update you on news way after they break out. When they have become oldies. In cyberspace, this is after a couple of  days.

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A public service announcement

Clifford has asked me to advertise a set of new NSF films. They haven’t been released yet. There is a trailer at his blog, narrated by Clifford himself, with a creepy scream of terror at the end. My guess is that someone was not expecting a mouse to visit them and steal the cheese. Go visit his site to figure out better what this is all about.


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Movie updates

I saw various movies in the past few days. I’ll give you the two line opinion on each of them, in the order I saw it.

Up- it was a lot of fun. There’s a lot in here that kids won’t get, but adults will certainly relish. The beginning sequence is extremely powerful.

Harry Potter- Pretty good overall (if you’re into the series you know what to expect). Some of the special effects with ink and fire are very cool.

Public Enemies- What a lousy script (the screenwriter should’ve been fired). It’s not even saved by the acting abilities of Johny Depp. If it wasn’t for my wife explaining the history along the way (courtesy of a history channel special), I wouldn’t have known what was going on. Not worth spending money on it, or time for that matter.

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Monsters vs. Cliches

I went to see Monsters versus Aliens tonight. It was in 3D and it was great fun in a childish sort of way, where there are no consequences nor after effects to seeing the movie. Now I’m rapidly typing, trying to see if I can beat Clifford to a movie review.










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