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Here’s something I said on FmH ten years ago today:

“In case any FmH readers were wondering how I’ve come by my opinionated gall, it may have something to do with the fact that I turn 50 years old today. (Others may be thinking I probably shouldn’t be doing this at my age…). And my son turns eight today…”

So today my son is eighteen, and I’ve put on a few years too. Thanks to everyone for all the wonderful birthday greetings.


Research paper saves UCSD scientist from $400 traffic fine

Research paper saves UCSD scientist from $400 traffic fine

‘Dmitri Krioukov, a senior research scientist at UCSD, successfully appealed his failure-to-stop ticket using a physics and math argument that ultimately swayed a San Diego judge.

In the paper, entitled “The Proof of Innocence,” Krioukov offered a series of equations and graphs to show that it was physically impossible for him to have broken the law, as an officer claimed.

The judge was “very, very smart,” Krioukov told The Times. “She got my point, I think, very precisely.”

Krioukov compared the problem to the way a person sees a train approaching from the platform and thinks it is moving slowly, when in fact it is barreling down the track. Using math and physics, Krioukov determined that a car moving at a constant speed can appear to move in the same way as a car that is moving fast but stops for a short time and then accelerates again.

In other words, a car that appears to be moving at a constant speed through a stop sign could have actually stopped at the stop sign, before speeding up again.’ (via LATimes).