November 17, 2006

Song Dunes

No, it’s not the next wave of Microsoft trying to play catch-up; it’s actually sand dune songs, or singing sand, if you prefer.

From Physics Web

Matthew Chalmers exposes the fierce controversy behind attempts to explain the mystery of “singing” sand dunes, which provides a rare insight into how physics is done.

Fascinating reading, though you might find it dispiriting if you’ve ever imagined that you had an interesting day job. You'll never imagine so again.


  1. Anonymous10:34 PM

    How enchanting Caz.

    Unravelling the mysteries of the singing sand dunes.. Never knew they sang mate!

    Gosh you learn something new everyday

    Btw Caz did you see where scientists injected adult stem cells into 10 young golden retrievers with a gene mutation.

    While the sick dogs would normally have been expected to find walking difficult by eight months of age, five injections of the stemcells at monthly intervals kept eight of the dogs walking and showing " extensive
    recovery." ( from The West Australian Newspaper)

    Apparently good news for those suffering from muscular dystrophy..

    The cells could be used to treat the disease as early as next year...

    Good news indeed.!

  2. Yeah, I did see that Kath, but you know, I wish they would be more attentive to accuracy when they report these things. On the telly they mentioned "stem cells" - they omitted the "adult" modifier.

    These days, with a “miracle” cure every five minutes, I think it’s increasingly incumbent on the media to more than skim the surface, and sometimes all they need do is add a couple of words, for clarity. It’s no wonder people get the wrong end of the stick on so much medical science, or perhaps start believing it’s all too complicated to really understand, so they accept the fairy floss version.

    I love the sand songs story. Glorious. And there’s only 30 locations in the world – did you notice that? So, not just any old sand will do. It’s amazing stuff. Jeez I’d love a job like that, even though I’m singularly unqualified. Do ya reckon they’d take me on as the work-experience kid?

  3. Anonymous12:00 AM

    They'd be mad not too, I reckon!

    Re the media. I totally agree with you.

    Is it any wonder that people rate journalists on a par with politicians!

    Never let the facts get in the way of a controversial story..

    No sirrree!