A life of debauchary.

Last night was the Oxford University Geology Society (GeolSoc) Christmas dinner. It was fun, though the food wasn’t brilliant. Let’s say that I’m sure the took the chicken in the barbeque chicken meal from a rubber chicken.

Anyway, it’s probably easiest to describe the event using pictures, which can be found on my gallery. Essentially, it was dinner at Old Orleans followed by dancing at “The Bridge” nightclub. Enough said.

I’m feeling rather tired this morning. Because of the quantity of coke I drank during the evening I found it very difficult to get any meaningful sleep even though I got home at 12:15am.

Social events are like buses…

You wait a long time and then three come at once.

This week there are three social occasions for me to attend. The first was on Saturday, a trip to see the latest Harry Potter film followed by a house warming party given by a friend of a friend. The second is tomorrow night, the Geology Society Christmas dinner, which has a “compulsary” after dinner trip to The Bridge nightclub and is formal dress (though I’m just going to wear a suit). And the final one is the Oxford Polar Society Christmas dinner on Thursday night.

Actually, as an off-shoot of Saturday night’s events I may be getting a regular, weekly social event, a trip to join a few people at a pub quiz. It’s a start and should be reasonable fun.

Open Source Crazy.

With the GPLv3 on the way and all the Free Software/Open Source ideology battles going on, I think it’s time to write a fundamentalist Free Software license. Obviously the GPL isn’t hard core enough and is far too lenient on the evil proprietary software vendors.. so here’s the first draft:

The Alpha Pure Ecology license.

(1) The Software is free to everyone. No-one can charge for it or any work derived from it.
(2) The source code of The Software must not only be freely given to all those who ask for it but forced upon anyone you meet, even if they have no idea what it’s for. If they refuse it you must continue to pester them until they relent.
(3) A derived work is determined to be any code written by anyone who has even glanced at the code in passing. The contents of the brain of such a person is classed as a derived work.
(4) Anyone who has produced or thought of producing derived work will have to release any back catalogue of software written or contributed to by them using this license.
(5) The Software and any derived work will have the word string “APE/” prepended to its name in recognition that it’s been 0w3d by this 1337 1Ic3n53 and is ideologically pure.
(6) And company which is the current boggy-man as deemed by the population who frequent Slashdot will be banned from using The Software or any person’s brain who has been tainted by this license as described in provision (3).
(7) Once The Software has been released under this license it can’t be used with any other license unless it’s a newer and more hard core version of this license.

So, do you think that’s hard core and viral enough? If not, can you do better?

Please tell me why this wouldn’t work…

On the way in I was thinking about the debate about nuclear power going on at the moment. My opinion is that it’s a very necessary evil required until we find something reliable and better, such as fussion. This got me thinking about the whole fusion thing…

The tokamak design is troublesome, when you get up to high energies the electric currents in the plasma make it almost impossible to control, especially as the plasma has to go around a corner and hence it’s not symetrical. A better solution would be to have a cylindrical magnetic container, but magnetic bottles leak at the ends, it was tried in the 1950’s.

Now, what if we didn’t have worry about the plasma leaking at the ends? What if we couldn’t care less, because the leaking, hot plasma would merely be pre-heating new plasma fuel coning up the line?

Has anyone tried using a pair of magnetic bottle conveyor belts, say half a mile or a mile long, each taking cool plasma in at one end and heating it up and accelerating it (not to relativistic speeds though, this isn’t a particle accelerator) as it’s pumped by moving magentic bottles towards a reaction chamber at the centre? I envisage the reaction chamber using a pulsed magnetic bottle to finally heat and compress the plasma to reaction temperatures and pressures and then releasing the partly reacted plasma to be used to heat water and generate electricity, also to be cleaned up with the helium removed and fed back into the ends of the pipelines once again. Plasma leakage at the ends wouldn’t be a problem as the plasma would be cool enough for normal materials to cope.

I need a fusion physicist to tell me the problem with this design!

Jack frost is here to play.

At last we’re having traditional November weather. So to celebrate the fact I went out this morning with my trusty D70 and took advantage of it. (It’s a slight pity that the fog wasn’t less thick as some sunlight could have spruced things up a bit.

The full set of pictures can be found here at medium and full resolutions but below I’ve included a selection of thumbnails.