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Is speed of light the maximum one can achieve?

By: Nikhil Malankar

 

What is the first scientific thought in your mind whenever you see a light source or a light beam from any source? Whenever I see a light beam the first thought or question arises in my mind is how can light have such a tremendous speed? The second thought which usually comes in my mind is that if light has such a tremendous speed, then can anyone travel more than the speed of light? The whole article is based on the same concept. I always wanted to clarify this doubt about light. I may go wrong somewhere while writing some concepts. If you find any mistake then do let me know about the same through your comments. Let’s start with the discussion.

We all know that the speed of light is 670616629mph to be precise enough. Take a simple example to understand my concept. The example goes as follows: Suppose you are travelling in a car with a speed of 5m/s. Now you want to travel at 6m/s. So, you pump in more fuel to go a little faster with a speed of 6m/s. But is this possible if you were travelling in a shuttle which is able to travel at the speed of light? Take a simple example again. Example is: Suppose you are travelling in a shuttle which is travelling at 670616628mph. Now you pump in more fuel to travel at 670616629mph which is the speed of light. Now you are travelling at the speed of light. But now is it possible to go further than this speed? Or is the speed of light is just ‘THE’ ultimate speed in the universe? As the speed of light is a ‘physical thing’ we also can’t see of increasing or decreasing it. But is there anything else which can travel with a further speed? If it is then what is it? Let’s go into some further details.

Suppose if we are able to travel at a speed greater than 1mph than that of light. Now the question is that will it affect the shuttle? If the shuttle does not get affected then is there a possibility to go at a further speed? If the shuttle does not get affected then what is the maximum speed one can achieve? If light is the upper limit then why is it so? How does it charge the particles at such a fast rate? And if we are able to travel at a greater speed than that of light than what should we call it? Here I would also like to bring one of the existing concepts of ‘Black-hole’. Black hole is such a powerful thing that it can also attract light which is supposed to have maximum speed. So, if Black-hole can attract at such a great speed then can’t we artificially create such a great speed? If the concept of Black hole actually exists then it is also possible to create such a speed which is also able to attract light. According to the theory of relativity, a Black hole is a region of space from which nothing, even light, can escape.  It is called black because it absorbs the entire light incident on it and it reflects nothing. It is a perfectly black body. The life span of a Black hole is infinitesimal but it keeps on multiplying itself at a very high pace. Black hole is also very small in size. But as it keeps on multiplying itself it turns out into a huge mass which attracts anything and everything. So, can’t we use this concept to create an artificial speed which is actually greater than that of light? It would be an ultra speed to travel. How can we use this in day-to-day life? Let’s see further.

If we are able to get a speed higher than that of light then a whole new dimension would open up. We would be able to discover the universe and those hidden mysteries about so many things. So many unanswered questions would have a justified answer. It would also help for advancements in technology and we can also find out if aliens exist or not. If anyone arrives on any conclusions using this piece of information please do let me know. Thanks for reading this article.

My views on the Universe : Part 2

By: Nikhil Malankar

 

This article is the 2nd part of the series ‘My views on the Universe’. The first part was.  My Views on the Universe : Part One. So, I recommend you to first read the 1st part and then come to this 2nd part. Let me introduce you again to this series. This series is my imagination about how the universe actually is. So, without wasting much time let me start off with the topic.

My 2nd part of this series is based on an assumption that the Universe is The Internet! Interesting imagination, isn’t it? Now let’s correlate both of them.

Nobody of us knows that how big the Universe actually is. Whereas we do know how big the Internet is but still we can’t say definitely how big it is. The internet goes on expanding every hour, every minute, every second and every nanosecond because it is being continuously used by people worldwide. Many scientists say that the Universe also goes on expanding continuously. Just imagine that the Universe is The Internet.

Based on these assumptions we can say that the Universe has a definite size at a particular instant of time. But the size goes on increasing every moment. The same is with the Internet. Now here I would like to make a very bold statement. It is said that the Internet’s size doubles every 5.32 years and so the size of the Universe also doubles after a particular time. The time cannot be determined by us because we ourselves are a part of this big, wide network of Internet. Our Internet is comprised of many other things too! You can call them void spaces, trash, asteroids, etc. They are Flash programs. And as we know that the Internet is an open source of information so anyone can edit a part of the Internet. So, the story of our planet Earth is published on some website and accordingly everything is happening. The story is minutely detailed by a very good writer. So, you can imagine that the story of Earth is only a single webpage which has a finite start and a finite end. Every single detail from the formation of Earth to the last second of destruction of Earth is written in a detailed way with stories of our lives, etc. And now just imagine that if the story of our Earth is only a single webpage then what about the other planets, asteroids, black holes, etc.? Now you have to realize that the Universe is really very big and ever expanding and so we can say that if the Universe is The Internet then the information goes on increasing. That is, a new story is published every second! The story of other planets, aliens and every other thing in the Universe is written and published with all the details. If the link to this information is added to our Earth’s website then we come to know about them otherwise the story goes on.

And then as we know that there is no end for the Internet as it is ever-increasing. The information posted on the Internet (i.e. The Universe) cannot be changed! This means that the past cannot be changed. The only thing that can be done is to create a future. And I hope that whoever is the writer of Earth’s story has given it a beautiful future. Whatever has happened let it be. We can only hope for the future to be as good as possible.

So, this is the 2nd part of my imagination. Read more in the 3rd part or just have a look at the 1st part in case you have not read it yet. Click here to read the first part My Views on The Universe : Part One

How big is the Internet?

By: Nikhil Malankar

 

Well, you may have wondered about this question, haven’t you? The Internet is really massive. It is almost like a universe full of knowledge, exciting facts, time pass and java scripts, etc. Sometimes I just sit and imagine the expanse of The Internet. The exact size of the Internet cannot be determined as it grows every second. So, even if you blink your eye the Internet as grown by a large size. (Probably in TBs!) Let’s move on to know how big is the Internet actually and some amazing facts about it.

It is estimated that the total size of the Internet is larger than 1 yottabyte! Ok if you don’t understand what a yottabyte is then have a look at the following conversions:

Yottabyte            = 1 yottabyte
= 1024 zettabytes
= 1048576 exabytes
= 1073741824 petabytes
= 1099511627776 terabytes
= 1125899906842624 gigabytes
= 1152921504606846976 megabytes
= 9223372036854775808 Megabits
= 1180591620717411303424 kilobytes
= 9444732965739290427392 Kilobits
= 1208925819614629174706176 bytes
= 2417851639229258349412352 nibbles
= 9671406556917033397649408 bits

Now you know what a Yottabyte is. Fine. So, you can imagine how big the Internet actually is! Isn’t it so damn amazing? And just think! The Internet is growing every second. A research shows that The Internet doubles every 5 years(Moore’s Law applicable over here)! And it would take about 1 trillion years or even more than that to download the total content of the Internet with today’s fastest Internet connection available. The Internet is truly a man made wonder. Even if I have written this article then it is just 0.00001% of the total Internet or even smaller part than that. So, take pride even if you are 0.00001% of the space on Internet. There is so much of spam, junk and other unnecessary stuff on the Internet that makes it bigger by the second.

So, how did you find this article? I hope that this one made you rethink on the size of the Internet. On completing this article I realized that Internet has grown considerably and my article is a part of that growth. I am proud of being a part of this vast Internet!

IIT TechFest Day 1

By: Nikhil Malankar

2012 has started on a very good note for me since I just got cured from chickenpox and then all things are going perfect till now. Because of my illness I had to cancel some of my plans the previous year but luckily enough I got cured before the TechFest 2012. Now I won’t be whining further about my illness which would of course bore you but I’ll continue with what the post is actually about. So, yeah the TechFest! I’ve been using this word TechFest all the time. What exactly is this ‘TechFest’? Ofcourse, you guessed it right that it has to do something with Technology and Festival. Well, the TechFest 2012 is an annual College Festival of Indian Institute Of Technology – Bombay (IIT-B). First of all before proceeding with the info on the TechFest I’d like to give a short description to IIT-B.

IIT-B Main Building

IIT-B is located in Powai, Mumbai. It would not be wrong if I were to say that IIT-B is the ‘Indian Harvard’. Right from the awfully big campus to the scattered genius talent, everything reflected a bright atmosphere. An atmosphere that is way beyond a conventional education center. And I was like, ‘Whoa! What would it be like to be in such a great institute?’. But then even the most beautiful thing in this world has some flaws in it. And that would soon be realised by us in the coming hours. So, let’s get to the TechFest now! The day was 6th of January, 2012 when this magnificent campus had invited us to witness this Fest. The day started off with us reaching Powai and actually getting trapped in the ‘Entrance Test’. No! There was no official test to get an entry (Who would go to such a place then?) but we were confused about the entry to the campus. And then after asking here and there we finally found it in a matter of a mere 15 minutes. Anyways, we got in to find out that we had forgotten to take the Visitor’s card that was required for certain activities in the fest. After walking for almost an hour we had to go all the way back to the main gate to get the visitor’s card. How boring was that, buf!

Well, now we were in utter confusion! Such a big campus, so many things to do and ample amount of time. What to do? Sit four lectures? Eat? Keep walking and discover more of IIT? Or just sit at one place and wonder? Well, to be on safe side, we tried it all! 😀 First we were just randomly wandering here and there. Then we almost had entered a lecture hall and we also sat there but then they told us to wait outside and stand in that awfully long line! Duh, who would like to stand in a line after sitting on those comfy sofas? So, we went ahead. Kept walking in the almost seemingly infinite path to discover this ‘CricBot’. Cricket is a famous sport, for my American, Chinese and Japanese Bros and sis’. And ‘Bot’, well as we all know, Robot. So, basically it was a Robot which can play cricket. Participants assembled their robots and one by one came to display their seemingly overflowing knowledge. Extensive C++ codes and wires here and there plus a laptop in every student’s hand-made it seem like a perfect geek spot! So, we went inside and there the first participating group came. Unfortunately because of some technical difficulties the robot was working in a bizarre manner. Just think! Almost a year’s effort getting destroyed in front of your eyes in 10 minutes. Despite of the efforts the team only managed to make the robot twirl around and get itself tangled. Felt bad for those guys. Then came the second group. By this time our enthusiasm was almost finished so we waited for 15 minutes and left the hall to enter again the vast world of IIT.

CricBot poster

After this we went to the Japanese exhibition wherein they had kept all the JapTech on display ranging from artistic vases to hybrid cars and PlayStation 2. Well, a time pass item.

Now we had already wasted a lot of time so we really wanted to do something. One of the friend in our group was really frustrated and wanted to go home. But then you can never actually leave your friends when you are in a group. You just can’t resist to be with the group. So, convinced that he would be convinced somehow we headed for the lecture. And yeah! Our conviction held true. Now we were heading to the lecture that would completely change the way we looked at life. It was about a 10 minute wait for the lecture and then we headed into this classroom that we had seen only in films and newspapers. Truly magnificent and sliding classrooms with ample space for walking and ample space for sleeping on the back benches. 😀

So, the lecturer was Mr. Sugata Mitra, an Education Technology guy from MIT Media Labs. He explained us about his work that primarily focused on spreading education through computers and his research states that if a person can read then he can learn anything, and by anything I seriously mean anything ranging from basic arithmetic calculations to Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. Much of this concept depends on belief and creating curiosity within a child. He presented some awesome statistics that represented his research in the field from 1999-2002, 2002- 2006 and 2007 to present. Mr Sugata believes that if a child is provided with a computer and a broadband connection he/she can learn anything and everything as swiftly as the child who is attending that expensive school in the neighborhood. Not only this but you can even pretend to be a Doctor by just renting an apartment and putting up a signboard as ‘Dr. So&So’ and buy a nice desk plus a computer with a broadband
connection. This experiment carried out by Mr. Mitra, known as ‘The Hole In The Wall’ project, was a worldwide success. How cool would it be to never learn from a teacher, isn’t it? In simple words: You can teach yourself. I’ll give you a simple example for this. Now that you have read about Mr. Sugata Mitra, if you are interested in knowing more about him, you will directly contact your best friend ‘Google’ for more info on him. This means that you are teaching yourself about this person and adding to your knowledge. As simple as that. Truly mind-blowing speaker. I also got the opportunity to talk with him in person and appreciated his efforts in the field of Education Technology. Sugata Sir’s research has helped many students from rural India to England, America, Indonesia and many more.

The 2nd one from right in Black T-Shirt is Sugata Mitra Sir

After attending the lecture we were all charged up to sit for yet another lecture since, by now, we had realised that the lectures at IIT are truly magnificent. But then our stomachs had a different story to tell. So, we went to the cafeteria near the Hospital/Parking lot and ate. The next lecture that we wanted to attend was at 4.30 and it was 2.30 as of now. So, we did a lot of time pass strolling around here and there and then time went by swiftly.

Next was Simon Singh’s lecture. Simon Singh is the author of many best seller books and notably known for ‘Fermat’s Last Theorem’. 4.30 to 5.30 and that was his lecture. Truly magnificent. Manas has posted his experience about Simon’s Lecture. Here I’ll provide some snaps of him.

The one in the Mohawk is Simon Singh

Oh and after the lecture got over it was almost 6 PM. And we had to rush now or else we would reach home late since the college was far away from our residences. And well, would not like to share the travelling experience back home. We were CRUSHED in that jam packed bus! Anyways, signing off.

Well, that’s the way we roll! 😀

I hope you enjoyed reading this post. Comments welcome! 🙂

The unforgiving street

By: Manas Chaturvedi

 

I stand here in the middle of this street, all alone
Trying to meet new faces, trying to seek the unknown
But the journey is big, small’s my feet
Better get going on this unforgiving street…