Monday, August 31, 2009
THE CALIFORNIA ACADEMY OF SCIENCES ...
is located in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. As I mentioned last week, Cliff and I drove up there last Tuesday, a distance of about 40 miles. The site had been completely torn down, rebuilt, and reopened about a year ago. Now there is underground parking, and a completely revamped academy.
So early that morning we drove up I 280 and into the City.
This is a shot of the interior of the central part of the building.
This is a geode, a hollow rock with crystals lining the inside wall.
My, what big teeth you have, Grandma!
Obviously, a (former) dinosaur.
This the rain forest, as seen from the outside the dome. Inside it was warm and humid.
Pond inside the rain forest.
Rain forest example.
That’s a live parrot, as it would be found in a real rain forest.
This bush has butterflies on it. Can you make out any? If not, go to the last photo.
There is one butterfly at the upper left, and another at the bottom just right of center.
There is much more to be seen here, but we didn’t have time. I know there is an aquarium and a planetarium. Another time.
NEW ELEMENT FOUND!
The recent hurricane helped prove existence of a new element. In early October, a major research institution announced discovery of the heaviest element known to science. The new element is named "Governmentium". Governmentium (Gv) has one neutron, 88 deputy neutrons 25 assistant neu-trons,, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.
These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton like particles called peons. Since Gv has no electrons, it is inert. However, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A minute amount of Gv causes one reaction to take over 4 days to complete, when it would normally take less than a second.
Gv has a normal half-life of 4 years; it does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places. In fact, Governmentium's mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes.
This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Gv is formed whenever morons reach a certain quantity in concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as Critical Morass. When catalyzed with money, Gv becomes Administratium (Am) - an element which radiates just as much energy as Gv since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.