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153680.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 5:48 am Reply with quote

Big old subject - lightning, St. Elmo's fire, speed, fulgurites, electric chair...

Last edited by Gray on Mon Mar 05, 2007 6:01 am; edited 1 time in total

153682.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 5:51 am Reply with quote

So good they named it twice?

post 147417

153687.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 6:01 am Reply with quote

Sorry - I'm just throwing things in during our Oxford meeting. It's really jusy a place-holder...

Frederick The Monk
154028.  Tue Mar 06, 2007 5:11 am Reply with quote

And a very nice one if I might say so.

154095.  Tue Mar 06, 2007 7:20 am Reply with quote

A friend of mine (a rather witty one) once asked: "So, had Jesus Christ been electrocuted and not crucified, would we be talking now about "Electricians" rather than Christians?"

154443.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 5:17 am Reply with quote

And religious people would be wearing jump leads around their necks.

154456.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 5:43 am Reply with quote

And Ian Paisley's slogan would be "No DC in Ulster!"

154492.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 6:58 am Reply with quote

One step towards it has already been taken in Italy where many churches have coin-operated electric candles that light up only after you drop a euro into a slit (smaller denomination coins do not work!). Pious commericailism. Or commercialised piety... Electricity made divine...

154515.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 7:20 am Reply with quote

I went to a church in Italy (I think it was San Miniato al Monte in Florence, but I have been to quite a few so I get confused) which had a fantastic golden mosaic of Jesus in the apse. This was lit by electric lighting which was activated by a coin slot machine, though I don't think it cost as much as 1 euro. Dropping a coin activated the lights for long enough to take a few pictures of the mosaic.

I guess it's just a good way to get some money off all the tourists.

Frederick The Monk
154524.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 7:34 am Reply with quote

Well vending machines were invented for religious use. Post 54488 and post 56513

Molly Cule
154554.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 8:56 am Reply with quote

This is from an old encyclopedia I have;

No one man invented or discovered electricity; indeed there was elecrticity in the world long before man himself apppeared.

Static electricity was noticed in 5th C BC by a Greek philosopher called Thales, one day he was walking in a wood when he saw some dirty amber and began cleaning it by rubbing it on his sleeve. He dropped it whilst doing so and when he picked it up some leaves were stuck to it. He tried rubbing the other side and again some leaves stuck to the amber. He jumped to the conclusion that the power of attraction between amber and leaves was characteristic to amber alone rather than trying the experiment with other materials. he called the curiosity elektrici, from elektron, the Greek work for amber.

It wasnt until 2,000 years later that anyone looked more into this matter and began to study it seriously. This man was Sir William Gilbert, Elizabeth Is doctor who wrote a book called de Magnete, he explained all that was then known about electricity but he still didnt know what caused it or exactly what it was.

Molly Cule
154560.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 9:06 am Reply with quote

Im mainly copying this as it is interesting to me : ) I've been inside battersea power station a few times as it used to be a nightclub...... my encyclopedia says of the power station;

"Every day colliers from the north of England tue up at the station's own wharf, where giant grabs, each lifting five tons of coal, can empty a cargo of 3,000 tons in a few hours. the grabs drop the coal into a hopper, from which it falls on to a conveyer belt, which carries it up a long slope to the top of a tower where it is weighed. Then it goes on a conveyer to the roof of the station, whence it falls through chutes to the mechanical stokers that feed it into the furnaces of the boilers. Steam turns the shafts of the turbines which are connected to the armatures of the huge dynamos. Two dynamos each have armatures wieghing 82 tons and need turbines of 140,000 horse power to keep them turning at 1,500 revolutions a minute. THe bearings of the turbines and dynamos run in baths of 7,000 gallons of oil. The waste steam from the turbines is turned into water again by condensers through which pass 2,000,000 gallons of the Thames every hour. The hot water from the condensers is pumped to the opposite band of the Thames, where is it used to heat blocks of flats. When all the turbines are working they drive dynamos generating 250,000 kilowatts, which is electric current equal to 330,000 horse-power.

Frederick The Monk
154577.  Wed Mar 07, 2007 10:42 am Reply with quote

Molly Cule wrote:
...... Thales, ...... called the curiosity elektrici, from elektron, the Greek work for amber.

I didn't know that. Come to think of it, as we don't have any of Thales writings, how do we know that? I thought the term was coined by Gilbert who took the name from the Greek for amber, describing the 'electric force' in De Magnete, Magneticisque Corporibus, et de Magno Magnete Tellure.

154960.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:29 am Reply with quote

Garrick says:

Q: ... what is electricity anyway?
Forfeit: Expensive
A: This will no doubt provoke a variety of explanations, sorry, "explanations", some of which may actually be right. There's no such thing, electricity is an umbrella term for a family of related phenomena. The best explanation I have found to date is at: , which points out that:
"Instead, approximately ten separate things have the name "electricity." There is no single stuff called "electricity." ELECTRICITY DOES NOT EXIST. Franklin, Edison, Thompson, and millions of science teachers should've had a long talk with Mrs. McCave before they decided to give a variety of independent science concepts just one single name [...]
"if you ask WHAT IS ELECTRICITY?, then all of the answers you'll find will just confuse you, and you'll never stop asking that question."
Which sounds fine by me.

154996.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 10:36 am Reply with quote

Hmmm. As that page kind of says, just because there are lots of different definitions (for different contexts in which the word is used) that hardly means that 'electricity doesn't exist'.

I think the 'scientific' definition at the top of the list explains it perfectly simply: the flow of electrons in a conductor. All the other terms at the bottom of the page aren't 'electricity' as such, which is why they have proper names.

Bit confusing that page. And made all the more suspect because the author has put 'Electrical Engineer' under his name, as if he feels he needs further 'proof'. He's also complaining about some fairly poorly written textbooks, but that should really be a complaint aimed at the authors, not the conspiratorial universe...


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