Friday, November 18, 2005

Boundary Layers


*
Yesterday morning, I hurried off to the Convention Center to participate in a panel. It was a panel on clean energy, but the convention was some high tech gathering. The panel was composed of a solar guy, a wind energy representative, and me, the electric guy. The session was chaired by the director of one of those industry-university creations designed to help foster development in a particular technology, which in this case was clean energy.

We all said our little peaces.

After our presentations, and in response to a question I think, I said something about transductional boundary layers. I guess I made it up. It was mostly just a lot of fun to say.

I was trying to describe a future where the word and concept of fuel becomes as silly a word as the word “horseless carriage”. When cars first came on the scene, that’s what we called them because we didn’t have any other context. As a legacy, a few of us still measure power and energy in terms of horsepower and horsepowerhours.

I talked about how up until just before World War I, the world was running pretty much the way it had run for thousands of years. At the beginning of that War, horses pulled cannons into place. At the end, we were shooting each other from airplanes.

A buggy whip CEO could have made a strong speech at his annual meeting of directors predicting many many quarters of strong buggy whip sales. The Farrier trade was a dependable way for you and your children to always make a living.

Then slam bam, thank you Sam, it all changed.

Today, our cities are as covered up with the residue from carbon fuel, as the cities of yesterday were covered up with the residue from animal fuel.

And just as those cities were shaped by the horse drawn carriage and the stone mason technologies of their day, our cities are shaped by our fossil fueled cars and our steel erection technologies.

I offered that the high tech business and the electric utility business are pretty much selling the same thing. We sell raw electrons and they sell shaped electrons. They are challenged by Moore’s Law, which I called Moore’s really great guess, and electric utilities are more or less driven by Less’s law of don’t change what you are doing if it still works.

Someday, perhaps soon, I suggested that every man made surface will become a tranductional boundary layer. Our surfaces will transform photons into electrons, electron to photon, light to energy, energy to light. Walls and ceilings will glow. They will absorb energy from your skin and give you the sense of cooling. They will energize you when you feel cool, de-energize you when you feel warm.

Our boundary layers will then become a great deal more than just walls or ceilings.

They will become transductional and as such, they will become technological metaphors for all of our boundary layers.

My skin is a boundary layer, but the energy from my skin emits into space at the speed of light. My ideas are somewhere inside my skull, but they travel to the other side of the earth in this blog with the help of my fingers and this keyboard.

Where does the real me stop?

Am I my body, my words, my effect on others?

We exist in a creation of transductional boundary layers that are constantly changing the energy from one side of the boundary into another form of energy on the other side of the boundary layer.

Live Oaks bring in CO2, breath out oxygen.

Red Foxes bring in oxygen, breath out CO2.

We exist in a unified creation which can be seemingly divided

by a legend of transductional boundary layers.

Yet, all of these boundaries,

mental, spiritual, emotional, physical, metaphysical, temporal, spacial,

because they are transductional,

Are actually illusory.


The Panel didn't get into that.


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* art courtesy of joannaniemann.com

7 Comments:

Blogger Charlie Loving said...

Leakey, Texas Nov. 2005

My pal the deputy sherrif (ex-caver) dropped in to pay a visit. Said I needed a 22 and a hand gun of larger caliber to deal with the hogs and sheep.

There are too many deer and not enough predators. There are way too many ferral hogs. The cedar trees drink all the water. The Aoudad sheep introduced in the Texas, Panhandle are eating up the ground cover. There are fifty of them on the ranch next door and the rancher begs people to just come shoot them. Problem is then what?
Yesterday we took three of them to a huge pit and poured gasoline on them and set them afire. That is so the pigs won't root them up. It was Valeros gasoline.

The oak trees are being eaten before they can grow. Hege hogs are griddling the pine trees.

The place look all so beautiful but under the guise of beauty it is being raped by mother Nature herself. Out here you actually notice the moon every night and can see the stars. The lack of cars and people makes it such a great place to be. No noise here except the noise of the earth and that which you make. You can hear a car coming for miles.

The red necks are fighting back best they can with their 30-30's and front end loaders and ATVs. Now I want one.Then they have lapses in sense when they see a predator and they shoot it. Except the ranche rnext door that feeds them horse meat.

The good thing here is that when you call people for service like the gas company or the phone company out here. It is like it was in the sixties. A Nice lady person answers the line at propane gas company and gossips after asking you how the little lady is doing? ten minutes about the weather and the next Sheep fest in Rocksprings. The DSL phone guy talks to his boss in Spanish. The phone operator says... "Good morning Mr.Loving, so sorry your service was interupted, that big wind blew in last night and tore things up along 337..." Say what?

South, Texas and three hours from anywhere.

5:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OZ, today’s blog thoughts are excellent and inspiring. CHF

6:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is good - visionary. We need new terms if we are going to enter an age where the technology that we consider today as marginal or not practical or not economically feasible, becomes the solution for tomorrow. Transductional Boundary Layers - it forms an image in my mind.

If we can visualize this kind of a world where we cooperate with nature, share the resources of this planet, and then name it, perhaps we can then "bring it forth" as part of the conscious recreation that needs to happen if we are to solve the environmental and cultural challenges that are becoming so apparent.

The visual image adds life.

9:16 AM  
Blogger OZ said...

I made a few changes around 11:00 and added a few links. Hi charlie, glad you love your new place.

9:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

very nice OZ... one of your best. MS.

10:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like this post a lot. Janelle.

2:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

grin. takes artists to understand that kind of talk. take care. keep dreaming. make songs out of your strange concepts. folks will sing and it will soak in.

10:22 PM  

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