The first paper from the Photonics and Quantum Optics Lab at Pacific University appeared today in the American Journal of Physics: Collimated blue light generation in rubidium vapor. Congratulations to my student coauthors and our collaborators at the University of Portland!
As I continue to experiment with open-access science, I plan to post my slides here for anyone who is interested. This talk is a Seminar I gave at Reed College; it is based on a shorter talk written for Photonics West 2013.
I have been working on a Schlieren Imaging setup for demonstrations and discovered an easy way to project the image onto a viewing screen. For reference, the mirror I used is a 1.5 m focal length mirror, 6″ diameter. Other parts are a simple LED flashlight and a 2 mm aperture.
I’ve been tinkering with it for a while, but I am finally sitting down to write about QuTiP, a great toolbox for doing quantum mechanics in the Python computing language. A couple things came together recently to re-ignite my interest and get me to think about QuTiP again. First was an email and later blog post by Markus Baden about how to set up QuTiP on picloud. The second was the discovery of picloud itself. Last week I was finally starting to dive in to a project to wire up five servers into a mini-cluster and then this week I learn about massively scalable computing in the cloud for mere pennies (picloud.com).
I haven’t done a lot with it yet, but I know enough to realize that I’ll have to find another role for these servers. I estimate that keeping them on all year will cost about $800 in electricity (not including the AC to cool them). For that I can have 16,000 core hours of computing power per year. My cluster would only have 20 cores total so I would have to run a full month of computing jobs (800 hours = 33 days). Picloud is such an obvious win that I don’t even have to factor in the time I would spend maintaining my own cluster.
It has been a few years since my initial post about LaTeX in prezi. In that time, the Prezi interface has been updated quite a bit. I did want to let everyone know that the hack I have been using still works, even though things look quite different. To clarify, there is a great Latex-to-image generator available that enables this hack. Specifically, type your latex code after the “?” character in the following URL and you will get an SWF image containing the rendered latex:
The way to use this in Prezi is to paste the URL into an image search. It seems like this wouldn’t work because the image sounds like a search box… but don’t worry, it will.
First, select Insert Image…
Then type in your URL:
It really is that easy. Of course, if you don’t know LaTeX very well, there is always the CodeCogs online equation editor. And for the record, this whole thing is powered by Code Cogs, so if you use it, please consider making at least a small donation.
I stumbled across an older post that is now very relevant to me (lego seems to dominate our house these days). This spirit of organization may come in handy at work too where I now have a ton of bitty pieces to try to organize into some sort of sense. If only Thorlabs optical components stacked as nicely as Lego!
Jack has posted a great set of instructions on how to use youcanbook.me as a replacement (or even an upgrade) to google appointment slots. As we enter advising season here at Pacific, this is definitely going to be something I will try.