As part of my infatuation with scientific mysteries, I really dug this Nature News piece about how the number 10^122 keeps popping up in many seemingly-unrelated places in physics. Scott Funkhouser (what a name) from The Citadel identifies five of them- I’m sure this ‘coincidence’ would seem weirder if I knew more physics, but it seems pretty weird regardless. The basic implication is that the universe is a lot simpler than we think it is. An old, but surely good, theme in physics. With this sort of physics data mining getting easier and easier, the Large Hadron Collider coming online this year, and a growing institutional hunger to move beyond the Standard Model, the smell of new physics is in the air. Good things.
Secondly- and more importantly in my book- my favorite author is mulling running for congress. If you like what Lawrence Lessig writes about copyright, technology, corruption, and politics, I encourage you to check out his campaign at http://lessig08.org/ . I regret I don’t live in his congressional district, because I literally can’t think of a better person to send to congress.