Monthly Archives: July 2013

Not for commercial use

In chaotic systems very small nudges can create very large changes. The F-16 fighter was the first military plane to use this theory. This plane was purposely created to be unstable, This actually allows it to be more maneuverable in the air. However, it is so unstable that a pilot cannot fly it. The plane relies on computers to make the constant split-second corrections to maintain stability while in the air. Since a pilot must rely on the computer to fly the plane the computer is quadruple backed up.

(The Great Courses – Chaos)

The language makes a difference

German opera started with Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’. In Italian opera everything is sung and the stories are all about human situations. German opera has spoken dialogue along with the singing and the stories include supernatural beings and events which are necessary to the story line.

(The Great Courses – How to Listen to and Understand Opera)



Dabs of Paint

Impressionist painting which started in the late 1800’s uses dabs of paint. They do not paint outlines and use color contract to delineate the areas that normally would be outlined. They also only used black paint for man made items since they insisted that black does not occur in nature.

(The Great Courses – How to Look at and Understand Great Art)

The lesser of two evils

The Soviet Union signed a non-aggression pact Germany and participated in the invasion of Poland. They also supplied Germany with aid during Germany’s war against Britain up until the day they were invaded. Winston Churchill hated Communism. However when Russia was attacked by Germany in WWII there was never any doubt who the allies were going to support. Churchill said “If Hitler invaded Hell I would make at least a favorable reference to the devil in the House of Commons”.

(Book – The Second World War Volume III – Winston S Churchill)

Shall we dance

French opera began around the 1660’s. Louis XIV loved ballet and ALL French opera had to have ballet incorporated. In fact French opera was almost as much ballet as music. Even into the late 1800’s an opera that was to play in Paris had to have some ballet in it. Verdi and Wagner both had to find someplace in one of their finished opera’s to put a piece of ballet before it played in Paris. Wagner couldn’t find a good spot so he stuck it to the beginning of the opera to get it over with. The French were not happy since someone arriving late would miss the ballet portion so the opera was a flop.

(The Great Courses – How to Listen to and Understand Opera)