Guy and relative stuff 
A taxi driver in the UK named Guy Goma went to the BBC for a job interview. Wail waiting someone from the BBC came looking for Guy Kewney, and IT specialist that was going to say his about the conclusion of the Apple Computer vs. Apple Records lawsuit. They found Goma, he ended up on TV live. The taxi driver says his about the lawsuit. Must have been the strangest job interview ever. The video is quite funny.

thanks goes to bob's junk mail for this one - do also read his his "It's All Relative" as well:

If you take all the matter in the sun and compress it down to about 1/85,000 of its current diameter, you would come up with a neutron star about 10 miles in diameter. (Actually, you might need a little more than the mass of the sun.) But the process is a little more complex.

First, you'd need a supernova. That's essentially a star that explodes in a big way. Really big. Next, the matter from the supernova collapses into a big ball. Gravity makes this ball smaller, and eventually the neutrons, protons, and electrons re-arrange themselves into a stable isotope of iron, because it can handle the pressure. Up to a point.

Eventually, the protons and electrons give up and turn into neutrons and neutrinos, and the resulting matter collapses into a bunch of neutrons and a few other subatomic particles. I think most of the neutrinos fly away.

This star full of neutrons is called a neutron star. Its density is in the neighborhood of that of an atomic nucleus. The sun is over 800,000 miles in diameter. A neutron star typically has the mass of 1.5 or 2 suns, with a diameter somewhere between 6 and 12 miles. That's really dense!

If the mass of the collapsing matter is less than this, it turns into a white dwarf star. If the white dwarf collects some extra matter and grows to beyond about 1.4 solar masses, it gets really excited and goes supernova. If the collapsing matter is more than about 3 solar masses, it turns into a black hole. I haven't seen either of these things happen, but I'm pretty sure this is true.

A pulsar is a rotating neutron star that sends out pulses of radio signals. They've been observed for almost 40 years.

A team led by a guy from University of Manchester named Michael has been observing a double pulsar system, where two neutron stars are in tight orbit around each other. They orbit once every 2.4 hours and are flying around one another at about 600,000 mph.

Since the neutron stars are so dense, this does strange things to nearby space and time, at least according to a guy named Einstein. Michael and his team have verified this. They have observed that the delay caused by the curvature of space/time near the neutron stars (the Shapiro Delay) is within 0.05% of the predicted numbers.

I don't understand all the details, but I think this is the first time this part of Einstein's General Theory of Relativity has been confirmed by observation. Imagine what Einstein could have done if he'd had a programmable calculator! ... 094623.htm

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