This blog is my attempt to reconnect with the world of chemistry. I have a PhD in Inorganic Chemistry and make a living doing research for a large company in Michigan. As times have changed, that company has changed its focus and I no longer have as much chance to do the basic, fundamental research which I most enjoy. Through this blog, I am hoping to recapture the magic which I felt during my graduate (and undergraduate) days in college. Expect topics on chemistry and alchemy along with some non-chemistry related items which I think might be interesting.

"The chymists are a strange class of mortals, impelled by an almost insane impulse to seek their pleasure among smoke and vapour, soot and flame, poisons and poverty; yet among all these evils I seem to live so sweetly that may I die if I would change places with the Persian King."

Johann Joachim Becher (phlogistonist)
Acta Laboratorii Chymica Monacensis, seu Physica Subterranea, (1669).

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Xbox's and Cats

Warning! Very little chemistry in today's post.

How many of you have Xbox 360s? How many of you have had Xbox 360s that have failed? If you're interested, here's a link to an article about what went wrong at Microsoft's Xbox division.

Yesterday we celebrated the one year anniversary of our cat Sierra. One year ago, we found her as an undernourished 2 month old kitten in my mother-in-law's back yard. Other than destroying a few glass vases, she's turned out to be a great cat. She was apparently weaned off her mother too soon, as her favorite pastime now is to suck on my wife's shirt sleeve whenever she gets a chance (as she is shown doing here).

Several months ago there was an article on the blackest black pigment ever produced, using carbon nanotubes (IIRC). Back when Sierra was a kitten, before her coat became shiny, she probably could have challenged that claim. She was an absolute black hole as far as absorbing visible light. Taking photographs was almost pointless since all you'd see was an amorphous black mass, occasionally with two eyes showing, which let you know which end you were looking at.

Happy first birthday, Sierra!


Ψ*Ψ said...

awwwww! adorable little kitty <3

Chemist Ken said...

Yes, but I can never get her to purr for me. She only purrs when she is sucking on my wife's sleeve, and then it's loud enough to wake the dead.

Katie Collette said...

She is so cute!

Ψ*Ψ said...

That makes her even MORE adorable!

Gerhard said...

I work at the UPS store and everyday we ship out like 3 Xbox. Microsoft has an account with UPS. I know it's an Xbox when the customer is walking from the parking lot. They use a very distinctive white box. We have been getting them for like a year i think. You would think they would have fixed them all already.