Monthly Archives: November 2011

Refractive index of glass

Physical science laboratory 14 was a form of practical laboratory examination. I set only a question, “What is the refractive index of glass” and the students had to determine how to obtain that value.

Donnalyn and Norma

Donnalyn and Norma plot their preliminary data on a lap top.

Agnes and Merna

Agnes and Merna initially attempted to do their measurements in water for unknown reasons.

Donnalyn's computer

Donnalyn set up a linear regression line for her data (not visible on screen).

Roxie concentrating

Roxie concentrating

Potentially problematic approach

For reasons that I did not elicit, this group had a penny under a single topmost louver. I was unclear as to what they were measuring, but on the lab practical I avoid questions that might provide an advantage to any one group.

Detail of lifted penny

A close-up of the penny placement above.

A cumulonimbus cloud over Palikir

The Cloud, Complexified

The issue of ways to store information and images going forward is one that continues to occupy my thoughts. Back in 2008 I realized that storage on the institutional servers where I work are not a long term storage solution as the institution purges files upon employee departure. Thus I moved into the cloud.

My fear of boxes of glass slides had helped propel me into the cloud. The cloud felt soft, fuzzy, and safe for three years, until those accounts were temporarily disabled in the wake of the cloud accounts being hacked. Compromised computer equipment had enabled a key logger to grab usernames and passwords, turning an on line email provider I used into a spambot. I was able to recover control of the accounts and lost nothing in the process.

Despite the recovery, I realized that life in the cloud is probably better lived by sitting on multiple different clouds and distributing data. Thus loss of a single provider will not lead to a loss of all information. Hence I added WordPress using Flickr to handle images.

Deciding how to juggle yet another set of sites remains to be determined. My blogging life is now forked, but simply forking content by category would defeat the intent of having material backed up via multiple clouds. Loss of one blog would wipe out that category.