FCC Actually Does Its Job (Kinda)

If you don't read slashdot or ars-tech or other nerdy sites, you probably haven't heard of LightSquared, the company whose business plan was to develop a 4G network that ohbytheway infringed on GPS frequencies to the point that the GPS system might well fail... but (with good reason) they seemed to figure that the FCC was so gutless that they'd get away with it.

So in a move that was widely denounced by fellowly-eunuched federal organizations, the FDA and EPA, the FCC actually said "hang on a minute". If you care you can read lots about this, or just enjoy a chuckle via the Onion.
GPS via NIST

  

Baseball Physics

We went to a minor league baseball game on Sunday.


This photo provides an opportunity for a high school physics exercise. You can see the ball in the picture. It’s the blur on the right hand side.

Problem Begin by estimating the length of the blur. Then use this estimate to calculate the speed of the pitch. The exposure time for the photo was 1/80 of a second. First calculate the speed in feet per second. Then convert to miles per hour. (There are 5280 feet in a mile and 3600 seconds in an hour.)