Physics constants, alpha, change…

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alpha

One of physics’ most fundamental constants just got a little more… constant.

Physicists have placed the strictest limit yet on how much the fine structure constant — which determines how strongly electrically charged objects interact — could change with the density of nearby matter.

The fine structure constant, also known as alpha, has long been both essential and confounding to physicists. It was introduced in 1916 to describe the strength of the electromagnetic force, which governs how charged objects interact and how molecules form. From there, the constant worked its way into important quantum mechanical equations. “It pops up all of the time in all of our theories,” says Michael Tarbutt, an Imperial College London physicist who led the study. However, physicists know of no fundamental reason why alpha has the value it does. (1)

Things in life change. You cannot enter into the same river twice. And yet science will tell you that you can…

We are too afraid to live without any constants dictating our lifes…

Twins, jail, Fear, Love…

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Police who are investigating a series of sexual assaults in the southern French city of Marseille have arrested identical twin brothers.

The 24-year-old unemployed delivery drivers, named locally as Elwin and Yohan, were placed under investigation on Friday. Officers say they are sure that one of the two men carried out the attacks, but that they do not know which.

Standard DNA tests are unable to differentiate between their DNA.

Extended specialized DNA tests, which will cost more than a million Euro, will be required to determine which of the two did the crimes. [1]

Even though many will stay on the surface if this, I think there is more than meets the eye here.

I do not think the part of DNA analysis is the important part of this story. If you ask me, a million Euro is too small a price to pay for such a thing. Determining who is innocent and who is guilty must always be based on the most strick evidence. We are building a whole system based on DNA forensics. So far it is going well. We must be nothing but grateful for the DNA analysis which has saved thousands of innocent people from being sent to prison. Technology and science at its best.

(I only wish we have the maturity to abandon this system of proof, as soon as technologies of distoring the results will emerge…)

I believe the important aspect of this story is the role of love. And fear.

Fear, due to which one of these twins is too afraid that he is ready to allow his beloved brother to be in jail for something he did not commit. All he has to do is confess and his innocent brother will be free. But he is afraid.

Love, due to which one of these twins (the innocent one) does not give up on his guilty brother and stays patiently in jail. Just because he loves him. Just because he thinks it is right and just to suffer for someone you lone.

One the other hand, I might be too poetic…

Maybe they both did it! 🙂

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