World class Physics and amateur music. The latter has brought me to the north north of England. My friend Phil and I recorded yesterday inside Lanercost Priory. http://www.lanercostpriory.org.uk. It was fun and pretty successful. Capturing the rich sound but cleanly took 6 microphones. Jerry the recording specialist did a great job.
The physics of music recording is a fascinating subject. There was a controversy in the 60s and 70s about whether to use one microphone for everything or many – one or more for each instrument. Guess who won?
Today I am with Phil in the Physics Department of Lancaster University. Number one in the UK. Phil is working and I am wandering around like a science tourist feeling like a junior Bruno Latour. They produce the lowest temperatures in the world. Matter does remarkable things here. The research teams here are amazing. I have tried to get a contact for our ISBS students on the highly original research being done here on the non linear dynamics of the heart function. Modeling the behavior of the heart as a series of coupled oscillators « may lead to improved diagnostics and heart treatment » says a poster. Emeritus professor Peter McClintock explained that it might also make anaesthesia dosing less of a an art and more predictable. Maybe a Nobel prize?
I think about Bruno’s account of the Jonas Salk Laboratory in La Jolla. The great book he and Steve Woolgar wrote called Laboratory Life. From that lab emerged ANT. An unplanned consequence of Bruno’s ethnography and ethnology.
What a strange coincidence that the world’s actor network theory repository is here too….