Dangerous Knowledge : Georg Cantor

Inspiration for following few Dangerous knowledge posts is BBC doucumentry known as “DANGEROUS KNOWLEDGE” which is a must see and recommended.

“Georg Ferdinand Ludwig Philipp Cantor (March 3, 1845 – January 6, 1918 ) was a German mathematician. He is best known as the creator of set theory, which has become a fundamental theory in mathematics. Cantor established the importance of one-to-one correspondence between sets, defined infinite and well-ordered sets, and proved that the real numbers are “more numerous” than the natural numbers. In fact, Cantor’s theorem implies the existence of an “infinity of infinities”. He defined the cardinal and ordinal numbers, and their arithmetic. Cantor’s work is of great philosophical interest, a fact of which he was well aware.The harsh criticism has been matched by international accolades. In 1904, the Royal Society awarded Cantor its Sylvester Medal, the highest honor it can confer.”

“Cantor was the first to formulate what later came to be known as the continuum hypothesis or CH: there exists no set whose power is greater than that of the naturals and less than that of the reals (or equivalently, the cardinality of the reals is exactly aleph-one, rather than just at least aleph-one). Cantor believed the continuum hypothesis to be true and tried for many years to prove it, in vain. His inability to prove the continuum hypothesis caused him considerable anxiety.”
“The difficulty Cantor had in proving the continuum hypothesis has been underscored by later developments in the field of mathematics: a 1940 result by Gödel and a 1963 one by Paul Cohen together imply that the continuum hypothesis can neither be proved nor disproved.”

Full Article at : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georg_Cantor

Advertisements

An ice-free Arctic this year?

“It seems our worst fears may come true. For the first time in human history, ice is on course to disappear entirely from the North Pole in 2008 itself, giving evidence to the process of global warming.

The disappearance of the Arctic Sea ice, making it possib

le to reach the Pole sailing in a boat through open water, would be one of the most dramatic — and worrying — examples of the impact of global warming on the planet. Scientists say the ice at 90 degrees north may well have melted away by the summer.”

Full Article at :

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Earth/An_ice-free_Arctic_this_year/articleshow/3173764.cms

Google:space race to the moon

“The race is part of the Google Lunar X Prize, which will put $20 million into the hands of the first privately funded team that can land a rover on the moon; have it travel on the surface for 500 meters or more; send back data, photos and video; and do it all by December 31, 2012.”

“The prize drops to $15 million after that date and goes away altogether after 2014.”

Full article at http://edition.cnn.com/2008/TECH/space/06/20/google.lunar.xprize/index.html

Arctic may be ice-free in summer within five to 10 years

Read this article on bbcnews.

A few years ago, scientists were predicting ice-free Arctic summers by about 2080. Then computer models started projecting earlier dates, around 2030 to 2050. Then came the 2007 summer that saw Arctic sea ice shrink to the smallest extent ever recorded, down to 4.2 million sq km from 7.8 million sq km in 1980. By the end of last year, one research group was forecasting ice-free summers by 2013. “I think we’re going to beat last year’s record melt, though I’d love to be wrong,” said Dr Stroeve. “If we do, then I don’t think 2013 is far off anymore. If what we think is going to happen does happen, then it’ll be within a decade anyway.”

for Full Article visit : http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7461707.stm

Ice Melting at the poles:Wilkins ice shelf disintegration

For quite some time now scientists have been predicting ice melting at the poles. In past few years we saw massive breaking of ice from the poles specifically the Larsen Ice Shelf. (The Larsen A ice shelf disintegrated in January of 1995. The Larsen B ice shelf disintegrated in February of 2002.). 

Now in the past week scientist were again shocked by massive breakage of ice from Wilkins Ice Shelf. On March 25, 2008 a 405-square-kilometer (156 sq mi) chunk of the Wilkins ice shelf disintegrated, putting an even larger portion of the glacial ice shelf at risk. Scientists were surprised when they discovered the rest of the 14,000-square-kilometer (5,400 sq mi)ice shelf is beginning to break away from the continent. What is left of the Wilkins ice shelf is now connected by only a narrow beam of ice.

In 1993 Professor David Vaughan of the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) predicted that the northern part of the Wilkins ice shelf was likely to be lost within 30 years if climate warming on the Peninsula were to continue at the same rate.

The breakage of ice would also have serious impacts on deep sea life and polar bears. Loss of ice shelves poses a grave danger to basic life like krill and crabs which are vital to regions ecology. There loss will eventually effect the larger creatures like penguins and disturb the eco balance.

If the current melting trend continues we will be facing grave consequences like rising sea levels, massive flooding and disturbance in Ecology of the region in not so distant future.

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilkins_Sound

http://edition.cnn.com/2008/TECH/science/03/28/ice…

Nobel Prize for Al Gore

 

Former Us Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts to spread awareness of man-made climate change and lay the foundations for counteracting it. The award was announced in Oslo,Norway on Friday.

This prize comes just after Al Gore won the Oscar few months back. Here is the letter I received from Algore.com today. I also encourage you all to go there and sign up and show your support for Al Gore and more importantly for the issue of climate change and the future of our Planet.

 

Dear Abdul,

I am deeply honored to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. This award is even more meaningful because I have the honor of sharing it with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change–the world’s pre-eminent scientific body devoted to improving our understanding of the climate crisis–a group whose members have worked tirelessly and selflessly for many years. We face a true planetary emergency. The climate crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and spiritual challenge to all of humanity. It is also our greatest opportunity to lift global consciousness to a higher level.

My wife, Tipper, and I will donate 100 percent of the proceeds of the award to the Alliance for Climate Protection, a bipartisan non-profit organization that is devoted to changing public opinion in the U.S. and around the world about the urgency of solving the climate crisis.

Thank you,

Al Gore

 

Nobel Prize is a great honor for Al Gore an and he has really deserved it as he is tried tremendously in past few years to raise awareness on climate change and global warming issue throughout the world. It’s nice that the world has  recognizing his efforts and soon the world governments will be pressurized enough to think and act seriously to tackle the climate crises we are facing today.

Google Earth/Sky

Yet another wonderful innovation from Google. I downloaded latest Google Earth 2 days back and it id full of surprising new innovations.

First of all there is a whole new thing which is Google Sky. Now you can view the sky view from a particular place in Earth. For example I can see the night sky as visible from Lahore. Then there is lot of detail like constellations planets and Hubble telescope imagery which is really wonderful.

Other additions are picture viewing and lots of new marker placement.You can see the picture of your favorite location by cliking on the marker and a the picture opens in anew window.