Join us on Facebook
What's Happening
more>>
o
Sonoma Materials fined $50k for eco infractions
Food & Wine
more >>
3c4ecce7d458178a1d47f2c41a4daef8
Two Sonoma area wines make Wine Spectator’s Top 10 list
Columnist, Blogs & Reports
more >>
Larry Barnett
Public Citizen
Larry Barnett

Dimples in Space-Time

Now that the election is over, we can attend to other matters of gravity. Literally.

Gravity is so ever-present in our lives we rarely think about it, except perhaps, when we slip and fall. The effects of gravity are well understood, beginnings with Newton's apple and now extending to our observation of gravity waves propagating across space and time. Despite such observations, however, gravity itself remains largely a mystery.

What is known is that every object in the universe has gravity, at least those objects large enough to actually be observed, such as galaxies, stars, planets and the like. The tiniest of "objects" may not actually be objects at all, merely vibrating fields or "strings" of energy of no solidity whatsoever--harmonic chimes of being. Reconciling the force of gravity--one of the four fundamental forces governing matter--with what happens at the very smallest, quantum level of existence continues to elude us. Physicist Steven Hawking sought to establish a Grand Unified Theory precisely to provide that reconciliation, but it eluded even his remarkable genius.

Setting aside that lofty pursuit, understanding the gravity we know--the force which holds us to the ground and defies attempts to float above it--itself provides rather remarkable imaginings. Many people misunderstand; gravity is not magnetic, though it is convenient to think of it in that fashion. The force of gravity is interpenetrating, non-obstructed and pervades all of space time, acting on every object in the universe at varying degrees based upon mass and distance. Gravity, as Einstein taught, is the space-time distortion caused by the mass of an object: dimples in space-time.

Dimples are easy to visualize; we've all known people whose dimples appear when they smile. Dimples can be diagrammed topologically as a type of distortion in a two-dimensional surface. If we imagine space of two dimensions as a flat rubber surface upon which we place a heavy round object, the form of a puckered dimple is easy to visualize. This get's harder when we imagine space in three dimensions.

A heavy round object placed in three dimensional space also creates a dimple, but that dimple does not look the same as one on a flat cheek. A three dimensional dimple is a point puckered on all sides, which for a round object means all the surrounding space. Just as lighter objects placed on the rubber sheet on which our heavy round ball sits will fall towards that round ball due to the dimple it creates in two dimensional space, so too will objects fall towards the heavy round ball in three dimensional space. This is the gravity we know; the response of objects in the distortion of space-time created by the mass of large objects.

Space-time is so-called because gravity not only distorts space, but also time. This was at the heart of Einstein's discoveries, and transformed the way we think about time. The greater the mass of an object, the greater the distortion of space-time. Really big dimples, like super-massive black holes, provide the gravitational glue which holds galaxies together. Yet here's a paradox; the gravity of black holes is so great that the matter comprising a black hole is itself crushed into a infinitely small, massive dense point called a singularity--the ultimate dimple. The nature of matter, time and space within a black hole, at present, is unknown and all but unimaginable.

Continue Story...
Checking up on Sonoma’s historic Toscano Hotel Checking up on Sonoma's historic Toscano Hotel

By Jonathan Farrell Named after the Tuscany region of Italy,  Sonoma’s Toscano Hotel on Spain... Continue

How best to donate to Paradise fire relief How best to donate to Paradise fire relief

Efforts have popped up locally to solicit, gather and deliver supplies needed by victims of the Paradise... Continue


• There’s cool, then there’s McQueen
• Election results — a Progressive perspective
• SV Rotary mounts effort to help Paradise fire victims
• Is Sonoma City Councilman David Cook planning to resign?
• Garber leaves SV Ed Foundation, search is on for new director
• Defense in Rothschild murder case called cruel, unjust
• Wish list: the gift of life
• Hope for the homeless?
• Historic London home, now a modern museum, reopens with open house
• Sonoma Veterans — proud and resilient
Letters & Opinion
more >>
VIDEO
Local Movie Trailers and Videos of Interest - more >>
SUN Columnist & Blogs
more >>
Public Citizen - Larry Barnett
Before It's Too Late - Eric Gullotta
Progressive Majority Coalition - Ben Boyce
Snark Infested Waters - Bob Edwards
Board Walk - Susan Gorin
Nonprofit Matters - Dr. B.J. Bischoff
What's Up With That? - Katy Byrne
Connecting the Dots - Fred Allebach
Voices of the New Majority - Loretta Carpio Carr
Creative Arts - Deb Carlen, Editor
Sun In-Depth Report - Sonoma Valley Sun
Under the Sun: Interviews -
Rude Awakenings - Catherine Sevenau
Taxpertise - Bonnie Lee
Conversations on Aging - Kelsey Maddox
Find What You're looking For

Archives

Events & Entertainment
more>>
Bullitt-Mustang-1030x579
There’s cool, then there’s McQueen
THE SUN EMAIL UPDATE
Sign up for our free daily email with the latest news, events and opinion.
What We're Following
more>>
Stories of interest from around the Web
A new culinary movement takes wing: don’t bother to brine your turkey
> New York Times - November 15th, 2018
What Glen Ellen’s ‘Measure T’ win means for fire safety 
> Kenwood Press - November 15th, 2018
Gifts to avoid if you don’t like being spied on
> Mozilla - November 14th, 2018

The billion dollar incentives not good enough to lure Amazon 

> Slate - November 14th, 2018
Will we see the first American world chess champion since Bobby Fischer in 1972?
> Chess.com - November 12th, 2018
Donate to fire relief on the #PARADISESTRONG gofundme page
> Paradise Rotarty - November 12th, 2018
Welcome to New Hampshire, where it’s already 2020
> Daily Beast - November 12th, 2018
Remember the uproar (about 68 uproars ago) over the Keystone pipeline? It’s still going on
> The Verge - November 9th, 2018
Could 3-D printing save music education?
> Smithsonian - November 9th, 2018
Florida elects an apparent racist as governor, but draws the line at dog racing 
> Orlando Sentinel - November 8th, 2018
The couple heading the Napa Valley Film Fest, once fired from the Sonoma film event, get bounced from latest gig
> Nap Register - November 8th, 2018
Order your holiday pies (three flavors) from the lovin’ ovens of Teen Services Sonoma
> Teen Services Sonoma - November 7th, 2018
How PG&E will let you know it’s going to turn off your power during fire threat
> PG&E - November 7th, 2018
Ethnic, racial minorities twice as vulnerable to wildfires
> The Conversation - November 7th, 2018
PG&E renews push for relief from 2017 wildfire costs
> CNBC - November 6th, 2018
Inmate at County jail subdued after barricading himself in holding room, starting fire 
> Sonoma County Sheriff - November 6th, 2018
Glen Ellen yacht club members to race on Sonoma Creek
> Kenwood Press - November 5th, 2018
Head-to-head comparison of Newsom and Cox on the issues
> Los Angeles Times - November 5th, 2018
Are you pro-cannabis? Where do you stand on the $2,400 laser bong?
> Motherboard - November 3rd, 2018
Brooklyn cop alleges abuse after female boss stuffs her panties in his mouth 
> New York Post - November 3rd, 2018
More Following Stories...
Link to Live Crime Map