I’ll Just Have a Terabit of That

Now and then I come across an excellent quote.  This one I especially love:

I find myself using the word “bandwidth” now, and feel the mounting urge to say “megabit” and “gigabit” and “terabit” as though these are normal words like “tree” and “rock” and “bunny.” I’ve learned the meaning of the word “photonics,” and now, like many techies, believe the most important fundamental particle in the communications industry of the future will be the photon, not the electron. You know your world has changed, has become more innately technological, when a distinction like that strikes you as interesting.
-Joen Achenbach

A while ago, I became interested in Stephen Hawking-ish astrophysics where they get down and dirty with the teensiest little particle thingys in order to study and catalog their behavior.  No, I don’t read about this stuff because I’m a genius, silly!  Rather, in my teensy little thoughts, I decided that if I read about how those cute little fermions, leptons and bosons behave in their purest essence, I might catch a clue into human behavior.  I could use that information to map out characters.  You know what they say … As the nucleon goes, so goes Aunt Mildred in the third chapter. Or, as in … I submit, Mr. Watson, that it was Ms. Quark, in the solarium with the heliocentric theory.

My premise in wading through words I don’t have a chance of understanding is that — if we’re all made of these little atoms and protons and whatnots — maybe we behave like they do simply because we’re influenced by our merest essences.  Yeah, yeah, I know.  That sounds so geeky.

Let me set you to rest.  I understand nothing of it.  Nothing!  With all my reading about the subject, I still can’t walk past a gluon and say with a straight face, “I know you.  Sure you’re indirectly involved with the binding of protons and neutrons together in atomic nuclei.  But what have you done lately?”

Well, now you know my dirty little secret.  I read about quarks.  It could be worse.  I could understand that stuff and be really insufferable.


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