University of Texas at Austin

Archive for 2010


Monday, September 6, 2010

Tower’s “lost” symbols, found

See the full-sized rendering of the tower's letters at http://www.utexas.edu/features/graphics/2010/tower_alphabets/tower_alphabets3.jpg.

See the full-sized rendering of the tower’s letters at http://www.utexas.edu/features/graphics/2010/tower_alphabets/tower_alphabets3.jpg.

It took a class of University of Texas at Austin students less than a semester to do what Harvard symbology professor Robert Langdon would have done in a rather hectic weekend.

But the students had the advantages of 1. being real and 2. not having to deal with deadly conspirators fighting to protect an ancient society whose secrets, if revealed, could change the world as Langdon has done in several Dan Brown books such
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Friday, September 3, 2010

Getting on the cover of Science

From 27 August 2010 Vol 329, Issue 5995, Pages 985-1112. Reprinted with permission from AAAS.

From 27 August 2010 Vol 329, Issue 5995, Pages 985-1112. Reprinted with permission from AAAS.

It’s not the same as getting your picture on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine, but getting an image you created on the cover of Science is still cool.

Georg Stadler’s computer-generated image of a brand-new way to more accurately show plate tectonics in a computer simulation was featured on the cover of the journal’s Aug. 27 edition.

“We heard about the interest of Science in featuring our
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Friday, August 27, 2010

Supercomputing on the coffee maker power diet

These students will try to build a supercomputer that runs on 26 amps. They are, from left, Bethany Barrientos, Phillip Verheyden, Vladimir Coxall, Loren Micheloni, Alex Heinzmann. Jason Kilman is not pictured

These students will try to build a supercomputer that runs on 26 amps. They are, from left, Bethany Barrientos, Phillip Verheyden, Vladimir Coxall, Loren Micheloni, Alex Heinzmann. Jason Kilman is not pictured

You’re going to blow a fuse if you get too many kitchen appliances going at the same time.

So you really don’t want to plug in a power hungry supercomputer between the toaster oven and the coffee maker. Your entire zip code – or more – could go dark.

But it
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Understanding race and sports

Ben Carrington

Ben Carrington

In his new book, Ben Carrington, an associate sociology professor at The University of Texas at Austin, investigates how sports shapes racial discourse. He talked to Jessica Sinn, in the College of Liberal Arts, about the book, “Race, Sport and Politics” on the Shelf Life blog.

Carrington, who played a bit of football (soccer, that is) in his native England, says sports is more than fun and games. He challenges sociologists to take sports seriously and take a closer look at the subject.
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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Thunder Bay update: More than a three hour tour

The research boat pulls away from its port, Alpena, Mich. Image courtesy of Thunder Bay 2010 Expedition, NOAA-OER

The research boat pulls away from its port, Alpena, Mich. Image courtesy of Thunder Bay 2010 Expedition, NOAA-OER

In the latest update from the joint project of the Applied Research Laboratories and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), we get a sense of what it’s like for the researchers out on the boat.

ARL and NOAA researchers are running a sonar device along the bottom of Thunder Bay (a part of Lake Huron) in search of shipwrecks.

Here’s an excerpt from
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Monday, August 23, 2010

Consumers are Wary of Green Products, but Unwilling to Admit It, Say Researchers

People say they want to buy 'green' products, but don't necessarily do it, Texas business professors found.

People say they want to buy ‘green’ products, but don’t necessarily do it, Texas business professors found.

I know I’ve done this:

I’ve looked at cleaning products on the shelf at Target or Walmart and seen the ones with natural ingredients. And I’ve wondered, “Can they really get the job done? Can they get stains out as well as chemicals engineered for that very purpose?”

I usually pull the usual “industry strength” cleanser off the shelf, put it in the cart and
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Friday, August 20, 2010

Updates from Thunder Bay

The ARL:UT team launches the ATLAS sonar into Lake Huron.

The ARL:UT team launches the ATLAS sonar into Lake Huron.

Charles Loeffler, senior research engineer at the Applied Research Laboratories, and Russ Green, deputy superintendent and research coordinator of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary, are writing logs about their activities at Thunder Bay.

Stay in touch with the project which runs through Aug. 27, 2010, at its Web site. It includes the logs, photos and video.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Texas researchers on the hunt for Lake Huron shipwrecks

Sonar mounted on the nose (left end) of the autonomous underwater vehicle will find unidentified shipwrecks at the bottom of Thunder Bay.

Sonar mounted on the nose (left end) of the autonomous underwater vehicle will find unidentified shipwrecks at the bottom of Thunder Bay.

A group of researchers at the Applied Research Laboratories at the The University of Texas at Austin (ARL:UT) are cruising the Thunder Bay Maritime Sanctuary on Lake Huron, mapping the lake-floor for undiscovered shipwrecks and a prehistoric archeological site.

They are deploying an ARL:UT-developed sonar device, the Autonomous Topographic Large Area Survey (ATLAS) sonar, to gather high quality images of the
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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sudarshan wins Dirac Medal

George Sudarshan

George Sudarshan

University of Texas at Austin physicist E.C. George Sudarshan will share the 2010 Dirac Medal and Prize with Italian physicist Nicola Cabibbo for their work on the fundamental forces of nature.

The prize is given by the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy.

The award recognizes the physicists’ fundamental contributions to the understanding of weak interactions and other aspects of theoretical physics. The weak interaction is one of the four fundamental forces of nature, along with strong interaction,
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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Simulating how the Earth works deep down

Several members of the Mantle Convection PetaApps project: Omar Ghattas, Lucas Wilcox, Carsten Burstedde, Georg Stadler, all of The University of Texas at Austin, and Michael Gurnis of Caltech.

Several members of the Mantle Convection PetaApps project: Omar Ghattas, Lucas Wilcox, Carsten Burstedde, Georg Stadler, all of The University of Texas at Austin, and Michael Gurnis of Caltech.

Plate tectonics was a revolutionary theory at one time. But over the years, it was accepted to explain the movements of the Earth that pulls continents apart and shoves them together.

An interdisciplinary and multi-institutional team of scientists is trying to understand how these plates move by creating the most detailed simulation of
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