Decoherence

Here’s a fascinating article on Quantum Darwinism, a term coined to describe the hypothetical process for how the quantum (uncertain) world resolves into the physical world we all experience as “reality”. My work in quantum encryption has caused me to read a lot about quantum physics in general, and while I understand much more than before, it’s still a head scratcher. But I like the article’s explanation of decoherence, wherein quantum entangled particles “infect” each other, becoming an entangled swarm of possibilities until at some point any one of those particles is observed and the entire group decoheres into a definite state – the one we call reality. A dozen science fiction plots occur to me as I think about quantum states decohering into physical states…it’s a mind-blowing idea.

When you think about it, it’s a lot like the macro-process we all go through in our lives. At the beginning we have infinite choices – we can do pretty much anything with our lives. A cloud of possibility/uncertainty precedes us. Then, we make choices. Our path forward becomes more and more defined with each choice, each action, and our infinite possibilities become finite. Those choices we make early in life are our decoherence, from what could be to what is. Pretty heady stuff.

Productive

Having a great day watching the annual Sunday Master’s tournament, getting some work done while watching and doing exercises every 30 minutes. Close to a perfect day.

Almost as good as last Sunday with Derby…

Imagine the horror if everyone in Baltimore suddenly died

Another pandemic milestone passed this weekend: ~575K US COVID-related deaths. It’s now certain that we’re going to surpass 600K, an unimaginable number of deaths.

I remember spending a lot of online time a year ago arguing with Trumpers and conspiracy theorists who didn’t believe there was a pandemic at all and that this was some big government control program. And some of those nuts/deniers are still out there.

Here’s a screenshot of the US cities with populations around 600K, from Worldpopulationreview. Just imagine if one of those cities and everyone in it ceased to exist? That’s what COVID-19 has done, just spread out over 50 states.

Back in the saddle

Back in Socal, back to being pretty much full time employed, back to the land of no rain and lots of people. Zoom and Teams meetings, deadlines, project plans, people problems and customer calls. All the stuff I left behind in 2018 except for the godawful commute. I have commitments to the companies I’m working with right now, but I’m anxious to wrap some of this up and get back to being an unpaid, unpublished wanna-be author. Call me stupid.

It was definitely great to see my dad, the kids and grandkids, my brother, and KY in the spring. It’s been a long time since I was there for the early spring redbud, forsythia and daisy blooms. There’s a singular beauty about KY in late March.

The airline trip there and back was fine, though much more crowded than I expected. Flights and airports were packed. And on every flight there are one or two jerks who push the limits about wearing a mask – the rules don’t apply to them. On my final flight into San Diego, one guy who kept being passive aggressive about sort-of kind-of wearing his mask, requiring the flight attendants to remind him constantly, was met at the landing gate by police. I don’t know if they arrested him or just wrote him a citation, but I was glad to see that being an asshat has consequences.

Age also has consequences. I was really tired after the trip, and regular sleep has eluded me. I used to time-shift with no effort, but that seems to have vanished. Gettin’ old ain’t for sissies…

It’s hard to know if I’ve jumped back into the traveling life too soon. Pandemic best practices are anyone’s guess right now. I figure getting fully vaxxed and taking reasonable mask/hygiene precautions while out in the world is the best we’re going to be able to do for quite some time (years?), so I made my move. Time will tell.

Spring blooms, a good walk and a resolution

I took a long Easter morning walk around the Clifton area, exploring the side streets off Frankfort Avenue. It’s a very pleasant area, though at this time of year almost everything has a nice sheen about it. So much is blooming, but it appears we lost most of the magnolia blooms during the last two cold nights. Here are some shots from the walk, starting with Easter lunch at Varanese (above).

Lots of folks like to pretty up their entryway sidewalks with spring flowers.

And we got the first early dogwood flowers of 2021! These popped out overnight.

Classic redbud.

And here’s a trifecta – redbud, flowering pear and forsythia.

Weeping cherry.

There were also some beautiful homes along the way.

And some neighborhood oddities.

All in all, a great way to spend an hour or so. I managed to cover about three miles according to the iPhone. But that brings up another subject, less pleasant. And less photogenic.

A smart person would have taken the pandemic year without travel and gotten into shape, lost some weight, gotten ready for re-entry into public. That wasn’t me. I’ve put on more pandemic-pounds than I care to admit. And a long walk makes that all too obvious.

A year ago I couldn’t walk three miles a quarter mile due to a worn out knee. Now I have a titanium superknee, so no pain, but what I feel is…heavy. Ponderous. I’m like that fucking gigantic cargo ship that got stuck in the Suez Canal – not very maneuverable, lots of momentum and when wedged into a tight spot, bad things happen. For the first time in my life I feel the absolute opposite of athletic. So I have to do something about that. I’d like to be a very healthy, mobile and spry 60-something and 70-something, so I’d better get started. Right now I’m blocking the canal.

Wabbits

It’s Easter weekend. Here’s to my favorite bunny (above).

Great day yesterday getting together with my dad and stepmom. It was their first real outing in a year (!), and we had four generations together. Pretty awesome. Though we’ve got to work on my dad’s smile…

One thing we can always count on is that Emily dresses the kids up appropriately, and with whimsy. Jesse’s Easter morning outfit below is a great example.

Good Friday, good dog Derby

Annnnnd…it’s April. Good Friday, in fact. 2021 is now 25% complete – where did the time go?

The picture above is of me and Derby at Tyler Park. She’s a good girl.

Moving a little slow this morning. Some combination of a poor night’s sleep and something I consumed has resulted in lethargy and general allergic-reaction symptoms. Lots of possible culprits – ate at the new Cuban restaurant last night and had plenty of unusual ingredients, from plantains to yucca and rum.

I’ve been a little lazy about importing the many, many pictures taken on this trip. We went to the Louisville Zoo’s light show. I should have some spectacular photos on the Fuji, but here’s an iPhone preview.

Thar be dragons…

It was really a beautiful display. We made it about 80% of the way through before a cold rain began. After that, it was a race back to the cars. But we had fun.