Friday, April 10, 2009

Foucault's Pendulum

Well, I saw the mosaic in the Indianapolis Airport, but by the time I had found it I had exited the secure area so I was unable to get any good pics of it. That will have to wait for next Friday. Meanwhile, today's adventure was a visit with an old friend (by which I don't mean to say the friend is old......you know what I mean........) to the Indiana State Museum. That was a favorite haunt of mine as a child, but today was my first visit to the new building on the White River canal (which was built more years ago than I care to admit). I especially loved the exhibit showing what Indiana looked like before it was settled--mostly forested, full of deer, bison and beaver. And of course there was the captivating Foucault's Pendulum.

Unfortunately, the pendulum in the new building lacks the drama it had in the original location. At the Alabama Street locale, the pendulum was the first thing you encountered. Suspended from the ceiling high above in the middle of a very large open space, it seemed almost magical--such a large, heavy ball on what seemed to be a very thin cable. Always surrounded by children, you would hear squeals of delight every 8 minutes, when another peg on the perimeter was knocked over by the pendulum. In the current location, the pendulum hangs in the center of a spiral staircase, and frankly, the industrial looking staircase detracts from the pendulum. At any rate, if you have an interest in what the pendulum demonstrates, or how it is affected by lattitude, please see http://www.indianamuseum.org/uploads/docs/Foucault_Pendulum.pdf







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