Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Freaky Science, Freaky Speed, Freaky Sleep

DQ Fitness Consultant Doug Walsh sent me two outstanding links today.

The first link is to a story about d3o body armor, which is being used by some of the downhill skiers in the Olympics. It's freaky. Here's an excerpt:
A futuristic flexible material that instantly hardens into armour upon impact will protect US and Canadian skiers from injury on the slalom runs at this year's Winter Olympics.

Is that amazing or what?
The resulting material exhibits a material property called "strain rate sensitivity". Under normal conditions the molecules within the material are weakly bound and can move past each with ease, making the material flexible. But the shock of sudden deformation causes the chemical bonds to strengthen and the moving molecules to lock, turning the material into a more solid, protective shield.

I know. Science fiction stuff. Freaking unbelievable. Here's the link:

The second link is to a video documenting the attempt to set a land speed record for the bicycle. It's stunning--and, for you ambulance chasers, there's a wreck, too. Spectacular footage, and here's the link:

I've got this weird thing going on with my sleep right now where I'm not getting much. I'm totally tapped out all day, barely making it through, but when I lie down, if I don't go to sleep within about ten minutes, I'm wide awake. Bummer. So I went to bed about two hours ago, failed, and got back up.

Of course, there are far worse things in life than being in your study at midnight, writing while your wife is playing "Smoke On the Water" and muttering when she misses a note.

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