HUMANITIES

Monday Missive – August 12, 2019

Urban Connections — Our university has long identified itself as an urban institution.  Our university is named after the city of Charlotte.  Our university’s tag line is “North Carolina’s urban research university.”  Our university has a large facility called UNC Charlotte Center City.  This urban focus is also reflected in our teaching and service work.  I was reminded of our urban emphasis during a recent conversation I had with...

Evidence of the Babylonian Conquest of Jerusalem found in Mount Zion Excavation!

Press Release via Eureka Alert: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-08/uonc-eot080819.php Researchers digging at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s ongoing archaeological excavation on Mount Zion in Jerusalem have announced a second significant discovery from the 2019 season – clear evidence of the Babylonian conquest of the city from 587/586 BCE. [See Evidence for 1099 Crusader Siege of Jerusalem for [...]...

NATURAL SCIENCES

The Last, by Hanna Jameson

Life has been rough lately… and by “lately,” I kinda mean the past two years, for various reasons, on and off. Because of that, I’ve struggled to focus on reading fiction, much to my own dismay. However, I opted to take a trip to Los Angeles this past weekend to catch up with some friends and meet a few twitter friends in person, and the long flight was a great opportunity and motivation to spark my reading again.

At a glance, Hanna Jameson’s The Last...

Vortices in beams of light and vortex coronagraphy

This past Friday, I was invited to give a talk at the monthly meeting of the Charlotte Amateur Astronomers Club, a lovely organization that has been around since 1954.  As a theoretical physicist, I am not that well-versed on astronomy but decided to give a talk on how the physics of optical vortices are now being used to improve direct observations of exoplanets, in a technique called vortex coronagraphy.

I wasn’t sure how well my talk would connect with the audience,...

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