Tuesday, 28 May 2019


Business Communication Series

Kinds of circular letter | Features of circular letter

Circular letters are prepared for circulating business and non-business messages. Thus, it seems that circular letters can be of the following two types:
• Trade circular letter: When a circular letter is prepared and distributed for circulating any business related message, it is known as trade circular letter. Its main objective is to circulate business information like, launching new business, opening new branch or showroom, changing address of business, introducing new product, inclusion, retirement or death of partners etc.
• Non-trade circular letter: The circular letter that is prepared and distributed for circulating personal or social information is known as non-trade circular letter. The examples of non-trade issues are preaching the political ideology by a political organization, circulating personal opinion on any matter by an individual etc.

Features of circular letter
A well-drafted and persuasive circular letter should posses the following features or characteristics:
1. Wide publicity: One of the most important features of circular letter is that it makes wide publicity of information at a least possible time.
2. Method of drafting: Circular letter is very simple in nature. It is drafted in a simple language so that people of various sections can easily understand.
3. Attractiveness: Another dominate feature of circular letter is the attractive and distinctive presentation of message. In this letter, information is presented attractively so that in can convinces the readers.
4. Conciseness: A well-drafted circular letter is always concise but complete. It expresses the message using the least possible words.
5. Courtesy: Since circular letter is conveyed to external parties, it presents information courteously. Circular letter is drafted by using polite and cordial language so that it wins the readers heart.
6. Persuasiveness: Circular letter is written in a persuasive and motivational way so as to influence the reader’s decision in favor of the company.
7. Reader’s interest: Circular letter always focuses on the interest of the readers and presents trustworthy information.
8. Universality: The format, message and the wording of circular letter should be such that all concerned parties accept it.
9. Free from controversy: A business circular letter is free from political, religious, social or any other controversies.

Source Credit: The Business Communication

Wednesday, 22 May 2019


Special Offer Book – 30% Off

MATERIALS SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING : A FIRST COURSE
SIXTH EDITION
By V. RAGHAVAN

This well-established and widely adopted book, now in its Sixth Edition, provides a thorough analysis of the subject in an easy-to-read style. It analyzes, systematically and logically, the basic concepts and their applications to enable the students to comprehend the subject with ease.

The book begins with a clear exposition of the background topics in chemical equilibrium, kinetics, atomic structure and chemical bonding. Then follows a detailed discussion on the structure of solids, crystal imperfections, phase diagrams, solid-state diffusion and phase transformations. This provides a deep insight into the structural control necessary for optimizing the various properties of materials. The mechanical properties covered include elastic, anelastic and viscoelastic behaviour, plastic deformation, creep and fracture phenomena. The next four chapters are devoted to a detailed description of electrical conduction, superconductivity, semiconductors, and magnetic and dielectric properties. The final chapter on ‘Nanomaterials’ is an important addition to the sixth edition. It describes the state-of-art developments in this new field.

This eminently readable and student-friendly text not only provides a masterly analysis of all the relevant topics, but also makes them comprehensible to the students through the skillful use of well-drawn diagrams, illustrative tables, worked-out examples, and in many other ways. The book is primarily intended for undergraduate students of all branches of engineering (B.E./B.Tech.) and postgraduate students of Physics, Chemistry and Materials Science.

KEY FEATURES
• All relevant units and constants listed at the beginning of each chapter
• A note on SI units and a full table of conversion factors at the beginning
• A new chapter on ‘Nanomaterials’ describing the state-of-art information
• Examples with solutions and problems with answers
• About 350 multiple choice questions with answers
 materials science materials engineering raghavan

CONTENTS
Preface • Preface to the First Edition
SI Units • Physical Constants
Conversion Factors • Greek Alphabets
1.    Introduction
2.    Equilibrium and Kinetics
3.    Crystal Geometry and Structure Determination
4.    Atomic Structure and Chemical Bonding
5.    Structure of Solids
6.    Crystal Imperfections
7.    Phase Diagrams
8.    Diffusion in Solids
9.    Phase Transformations
10.  Elastic, Anelastic and Viscoelastic Behaviour
11.  Plastic Deformation and Creep in Crystalline Materials            
12.  Fracture
13.  Oxidation and Corrosion
14.  Conductors and Resistors
15.  Semiconductors
16.  Magnetic Materials
17.  Dielectric Materials
18.  Nanomaterials
Appendix I—Properties of Elements
Appendix II—Properties of Engineering Materials
Index

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
V. RAGHAVAN, Ph.D. (Sheffield), formerly Professor of Materials Science at the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, taught materials science courses at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, and at IIT Kanpur and IIT Delhi for many years. A Fellow of the American Society of Metals and an honorary member of the Indian Institute of Metals, Professor Raghavan is the recipient of the Brunton Medal of Sheffield University, UK (1964), the G.D. Birla Gold Medal of Indian Institute of Metals (1985), and the Hume-Rothery Award of the Institute of Materials London (2001).

Purchase the book at 30% discount. Click https://bit.ly/2EpnkSS and Use Promo Code PHI#6663


Point of View

The Difficulties of Work-Life Balance for Women

“I won’t be answering any more questions about my work-life balance”
Read why Sherry Pagoto, a professor of allied health sciences and director of the UConn Center for mHealth and Social Media at the University of Connecticut, says so.

Women get scant enough airtime as it is – they shouldn’t have to use it talking about managing family and career obligations.

“Where is your daughter?” This is a question that I get a lot when I’m travelling professionally and happen to share an anecdote about my 10-year-old daughter. I don’t wear a wedding ring, so my unmarried status is silently revealed to all without my consent. In a world of people who pair off for eternity, I am required to provide an explanation. I always wonder what the questioner is guessing – that I have locked her in a closet until my return?

But also, I wonder why someone who I barely know is interested in my childcare arrangements and feels emboldened enough to enquire? Nevertheless, it catches me off guard so I just say: “With her father.” How do widows feel when they are asked this question? Like they have received a punch to the gut, I’m guessing.

Society generally has poor boundaries when it comes to women. How we live our lives, the size of our bodies and, of course, those pregnant bellies all demand enquiry. What will you be doing about work after the baby comes? Everyone wants to know if we are proceeding according to expectations. If something seems awry, a clarification is in order.

To launch her new book, novelist and short-story writer Lauren Groff gave an interview to the Harvard Gazette. The interview starts with typical interview fare, but then pivots to Groff’s personal life. “You are a mother of two. In 10 years, you have produced three novels and two short-story collections. Can you talk about your process and how you manage work and family?”, the interviewer asked.

So many numbers there, you can almost hear the mental maths not adding up. Groff declined to answer on the grounds that men are never asked this question. And she’s right, they aren’t. To this day, nobody is dying to know how Ernest Hemingway managed his life’s work, traversing continents while sipping cocktails and watching bullfights, as a father of three. Steve Jobs’ rejected daughter is a sidebar in tales of his genius. Men’s work, not their parenting habits, is the focus of our fascination.

Women should routinely reject work-life balance questions in professional forums not only because men are never asked them, but because it is an attempt to re-domesticate us, to hold us accountable for our deviation from tradition. If we aren’t scrubbing the floors and baking cookies, then who is?

The world is dying to hear: are you paying someone? If so, they assume that you are dripping with privilege. Is your husband doing it? If so, you emasculated him. Are you doing it all yourself? If so, you are exhausted and probably failing at everything. In all cases, you are missing out on the full motherhood experience. Poor thing. The “How do you do it all?” question is a trap.
 
Taking the time to answer it during a professional appearance also robs us of the little airtime that we get to discuss our work. Women, especially women of colour, are under-represented in keynotes, panels, editorial sections and nearly every venue in which our voices can be heard. We can’t afford to give up any of this precious airtime.
 
Even worse, incessantly posing this question to women implies work-life balance is a mysterious impossible-to-crack formula, tantamount to curing cancer. If a woman shares the golden answer, the rest of us can be saved. But that’s the thing, saved from what?
 
In a CNN op-ed piece, Alexandra King laments Groff’s refusal, “For many women like me, who are not yet mothers, that question is one that I desperately want to have a better answer for.”

Working mothers need to reflect on why the next generation is feeling so desperate. Are our lives that miserable? The fear that we are radiating to the next generation risks discouraging them from striving to become financially independent (or a mother, for that matter), which is the worst disservice we can do for each other.

Desiring work-life balance advice is completely understandable given workplace policies for mothers are awful, but demanding that a woman interrupt her spotlight to quell anxieties that could be quelled by asking a mentor, friend or colleague is wildly inappropriate.

A time and a place exists for us to help each other with practical advice and it is not during our book releases, keynotes or media spots. Let’s suspend our needs while our sisters enjoy their minute in the sun.

Improving work-life balance will ultimately require widespread adoption of policies such as paid parental leave, equal pay, affordable childcare and flexible hours. Truly implementing these policies will require us to ascend the ranks within our respective sectors. If enough of us get there, we will reach the levers. For this to happen, we need to support, not interrupt, the women who are climbing those ranks.

About the Author
Sherry Pagoto is a professor of allied health sciences and director of the UConn Center for mHealth and Social Media at the University of Connecticut.
Twitter: @DrSherryPagoto

Source Credit: https://bit.ly/2Hw6lQM

Tuesday, 21 May 2019


Special Offer Book – 30% Off

FUNDAMENTALS OF COMPUTERS, SIXTH EDITION
RAJARAMAN, V. & ADABALA, NEEHARIKA

The sixth edition of the highly acclaimed “Fundamentals of Computers” lucidly presents how a computer system functions. Both hardware and software aspects of computers are covered. The book begins with how numeric and character data are represented in a computer, how various input and output units function, how different types of memory units are organized, and how data is processed by the processor. The interconnection and communication between the I/O units, the memory, and the processor is explained clearly and concisely. Software concepts such as programming languages, operating systems, and communication protocols are discussed. With growing use of wireless to access computer networks, cellular wireless communication systems, WiFi (Wireless high fidelity), and WiMAX have become important. Thus it has now become part of “fundamental knowledge” of computers and has been included. Besides this, use of computers in multimedia processing has become commonplace and hence is discussed. With the increase in speed of networks and consequently the Internet, new computing environments such as peer to peer, grid, and cloud computing have emerged and will change the future of computing. Hence a new chapter on this topic has been included in this edition.

This book is an ideal text for undergraduate and postgraduate students of Computer Applications (BCA and MCA), undergraduate students of engineering and computer science who study fundamentals of computers as a core course, and students of management who should all know the basics of computer hardware and software. It is ideally suited for working professionals who want to update their knowledge of fundamentals of computers.

Key features
  Fully updated retaining the style and all contents of the fifth edition.
  In-depth discussion of both wired and wireless computer networks.
  Extensive discussion of analog and digital communications.
  Advanced topics such as multiprogramming, virtual memory, DMA, RISC, DSP, RFID, Smart Cards, WiGig, GSM, CDMA, novel I/O devices, and multimedia compression (MP3, MPEG) are described from first principles.
  A new chapter on Emerging Computing Environments, namely, peer to peer, grid, and cloud computing, has been added for the first time in an entry level book.
  Each chapter begins with learning goals and ends with a summary to aid self-study.
  Includes an updated glossary of over 340 technical terms used in the book.
 computer basics computer fundamentals rajaraman

Contents
Preface
1.      Computer Basics
2.      Data Representation
3.      Input/Output Units
4.      Computer Memory
5.      Processor
6.      Binary Arithmetic
7.      Logic Circuits
8.      Computer Architecture
9.      Programming Languages
10.   Operating Systems
11.   Microcomputers
12.   Computer Generations and Classification
13.   Computer Networks
14.   Voice and Data Communications
15.   Advanced Input/output Interfaces
16.   Multimedia Data Acquisition and Processing
17.   Emerging Computing Environments
References • Glossary • Index

About the Authors
Prof. V. Rajaraman, Honorary Professor, Supercomputer Education & Research Centre, IISc. Bangalore, is the author of more than 14 books on our list.

A pioneer in Computer Science, education and research in India, Prof. Rajaraman has received numerous awards for his contribution to the field including the Padma Bhushan by the President of India in 1998. He has also been awarded the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize in 1976. He is the recipient of Homi Bhabha Prize by UGC, Om Prakash Bhasin Award, ISTE Award for excellence in teaching computer engineering, Rustom Choksi Award, Zaheer Medal by the Indian National Science Academy, and Lifetime Contribution Award by the Indian National Academy of Engineering in 2005. He was awarded D.Sc. (h.c.) by IIT Kanpur and Bengal Engineering and Science University, Shibpur.

Learn more about him and his books, click on the following links


Neeharika Adabala, Ph.D. (IISc), is the founder and chief architect of CybULab Pvt. Ltd., a company that applies information visualization techniques and cognition theory to develop educational services. She is also a co-founder of Lifetape Inc. She was previously a researcher at Microsoft Research India, where she worked on effective visualization of and interaction with information, as well as on use of semantics to improve user-computer interaction. She has worked in MIRALab at the University of Geneva and also in University of Central Florida. She has published papers in the areas of fluid simulation, realistic and abstract rendering techniques, and information visualization. She is on the editorial board of the Springer-Verlag journal for computer graphics and serves on the program committees of international conferences in the areas of computer graphics and animation.

Use Promo code PHI#6663 to get 30% Off. Click https://www.phindia.com/Books/BookDetail/OTc4ODEyMDM1MDY3MA


Point of View

The Era of “Move Fast and Break Things” Is Over
By Hemant Taneja, Managing Director,  General Catalyst and co-author of Unscaled: How AI and a New Generation of Upstarts Are Creating the Economy of the Future.

Many of today’s entrepreneurs live by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s now-famous motto: “Move fast and break things.” Zuckerberg intended for this to inform internal design and management processes, but it aptly captures how entrepreneurs regard disruption: more is always better. We raced to put our products into consumers’ hands as fast as possible, without regard for the merit of—and rationale for—offline systems of governance. This is increasingly untenable.

Larry Fink’s 2018 letter to CEOs articulated the need for a new paradigm of stakeholder accountability for businesses across the spectrum. In the technology sector, venture capitalists must play a role in driving this change. The technologies of tomorrow—genomics, blockchain, drones, AR/VR, 3D printing—will impact lives to an extent that will dwarf that of the technologies of the past ten years. At the same time, the public will continue to grow weary of perceived abuses by tech companies, and will favor businesses that address economic, social, and environmental problems.

In short, the “move fast and break things” era is over. “Minimum viable products” must be replaced by “minimum virtuous products”—new offerings that test for the effect on stakeholders and build in guards against potential harms.

For VCs, questions are the tool of our trade. If innovation is to survive into the 21st century, we need to change how companies are built by changing the questions we ask of them. To better assess the social impact of startups’ technology, I propose eight questions every company must be able to answer—and every venture capitalist should be asking.

1.What systemic, societal change do you aspire to create with your product?
If a founder aspires to create a truly transformative tech company, they should appreciate the first, second, and third order possibilities of what that transformation means. When I ask entrepreneurs this question, I look for a sophisticated awareness of how other technologies, trends, and stakeholders map onto their vision for the future. More than anything, I look for empathy.

Let’s take a relatively simple example. Suppose we spoke to an entrepreneur working on human longevity. We would need to see a vision—and a minimum virtuous product—that addressed disruption in labor markets through automation (what does the world look like when people live longer and have less access to work?) and disparity in access (will society allow a world in which the wealthy live 2X as long as the middle class? 3X as long as the poor? Should it?). The best leaders of tomorrow will see these links and plan for them from day one.

2.How will you sustain the virtue of your product?
I grew up in India before moving to the U.S. in my teens. Facebook allows me to maintain ongoing connections with childhood friends, bringing me real joy. The vast majority of Facebook users have similarly virtuous use cases. But Facebook, and many innovations of its vintage, are statistically virtuous without being comprehensively virtuous. That is, a small number of nefarious users can—and have—caused major harm, making Facebook a prominent example of how a firm failed to anticipate and prevent its worst-case scenarios.

Future startups must do better. As DJ Patil, the former U.S. Chief Data Scientist and my friend, argues, the goal should not be perfect clairvoyance, but rather reasonable foresight. As an example, consider genomics. Already, CRISPR technology allows us to edit genes. That prospect is exciting—but also has the potential for serious social harm. If wealthy people can make themselves—or their children—better looking, more athletic, and smarter, it creates a biological divide that will dwarf current disparities in wealth, opportunity, and access.

To prevent unfettered gene editing, either society will enact regulation (that may kill innovation outright), or companies and regulators will partner to tackle inequity in access. The latter outcome is clearly preferable.

Genomics is perhaps the most dramatic example, but every entrepreneur should have a plan to address such risks. Consumer and regulator tolerance for statistical (or even selective) virtue will wane with each passing year.

3.How do you drive the greatest impact on an individual level?
As I discuss in my book Unscaled, AI, coupled with powerful platforms, now allows innovators to achieve impact at breathtaking speed. That means impact will increasingly come from companies that service narrower slices of customers more precisely and effectively. I look for founders that appreciate this.

When I began working with Glen Tullman, the founder of the diabetes care management company Livongo, we knew we wanted to optimize for impact. Mass-market approaches to diabetes lumped patients into one of two categories: type 1 or type 2. As we all know intuitively, everyone suffers differently and needs different care. Standardized treatments allowed care providers to touch the most people, but we believed we could make a bigger impact on people’s lives by providing personalized, preemptive healthcare solutions regardless of which type they have.

Today, Livongo competes with healthcare giants like Johnson & Johnson and UnitedHealth by providing coaching and data insights to help patients reduce the severity of their diabetes. I do not believe that would have been possible had we accepted their market premise.

4.What do you think is an optimal growth rate? How will you keep yourself accountable as you scale?
Growth is at the heart of most venture capital conversations. For any firm, the optimal growth rate depends on a variety of factors: the required pace of hiring, the complexity of services delivered, the capital intensity of expansion, and the size, maturity, and competition in the market, among others.
More often than not, venture capitalists promote a “winner-take-all” mindset, pushing expansion at the cost of impact on initial customer targets. This is increasingly untenable: the speed with which more narrowly-cast solutions can supplant incumbents means that subpar services will be replaced. The market will punish premature growth, to say nothing of the ethical issues inherent in hooking customers into half-baked solutions in healthcare, financial services, or other critical industries. We should not ignore the moral implications of the old “land and expand” business aphorism. Today when I talk with entrepreneurs about how quickly they can grow, I want to see them recognize that creating a “virtuous” product may require them to grow more slowly than they might otherwise.

5.What’s your framework for leveraging data and AI responsibly?
Over the long-term, founders cannot create black-box AI if they want to maintain adoption, regulator cooperation, and consumer trust. Innovators should be able to explain, in relatively simple terms, why their complex algorithms tend to reach the conclusions that they do. Would you trust an AI medical diagnosis without a basic understanding of its methodology? Would you trust AI that couldn’t explain itself to render a criminal sentencing opinion on you or a loved one?

If a founder can articulate their complex AI footprint in simple, understandable, and honest terms, their products will be more sustainably successful. Needless to say, this is predicated on a founder understanding their AI’s results themselves.

Similarly, we are all familiar with growing consumer backlash regarding unforeseen or poorly understood personal data collection and usage. Regardless of whether the government acts, it is inevitable that AI will be forced to collect, log, and use data in a wholly transparent manner. Entrepreneurs who figure that out today will have a leg up on the competition.

6.Does your business foster an ecosystem in which innovation thrives?
Bill Gates has said that a platform exists when “the economic value of everyone that uses it exceeds the value of the company that creates it,” and this vision of a true platform will guide future regulation for a simple reason: creating shared value insulates innovation. The old rules of what constitutes a monopoly are destined to change. Ostensibly free “platforms”—Amazon, Google, and Facebook—have become, in effect, the monopolies of the 21st century. How can a small retailer on Amazon hope to compete with Amazon’s massive data advantage (which the small retailer itself is helping augment and supply?). While these sorts of grasps on data enhance the offerings of the monopolists, they stifle innovation and will ultimately hurt competition—and thus, customers. These data monopolies have a responsibility to not only promote fair pricing, but to help support a vibrant innovation economy. The only alternative to such an approach is the near inevitability of restrictive regulation.

7.How do you define and promote diversity in the context of your business?
The numbers are striking: Only 8% of venture partners at major funds are female, less than 3% employ black or Latino investors, and less than 3% of venture capital went to all-female teams last year (compared to 79% to all-male founding teams). A meager 13% of venture capital flowed to minorities during that same period, despite the fact that we live in a country where, as of the last census, 35% of businesses are owned by women and 28% are owned by minorities. Given First Round’s finding that their portfolio companies with a female founder performed 63% better than those with all-male founding teams, we have to acknowledge a core truth in our industry: there is a sustained market failure as it relates to the types of founders that receive venture funding.

As we commit to improving our own operations, investors have a financial interest in pushing their portfolios to aggressively embrace D&I. McKinsey research shows that diverse teams outperform in performance, talent acquisition, customer orientation, and employee satisfaction. Intuitively, diverse, empathetic perspectives make for better offerings. We encourage founders to use the established methods to reduce bias in hiring, such as the approaches Rebecca Knight lays out: standardizing interviews, requiring a work sample, doing blind resume reviews (without names), and challenging “gut feeling” assessments.

8.How does your company dynamically evolve in response to regulation and account for the various stakeholders your product impacts?
For decades, entrepreneurs have treated regulation as something to worry about tomorrow. But regulation is not, inherently, bad. Bad regulation is bad. And, as our technologies grow more ubiquitous, more powerful, and more difficult to understand, the threat of bad regulation grows. If we do not engage early and constructively in the policy debate, regulator attention will naturally turn towards overcorrection, destroying economic value and crippling American competitiveness.

It is intellectually inconsistent to preach about a disruptive, billion-dollar vision and imagine it as being free from regulatory considerations. It fascinates me how often entrepreneurs lack a basic grounding in the regulatory hurdles they may face. At a minimum, founders must know who the key decision makers in their market are and think through how and when it makes sense to engage with them. Transactional relationships, born of crises, are neither effective nor worthwhile. Continual, consistent dialogue leads to better-informed regulators and better regulatory regimes.

Ultimately, venture capitalists take views on high-caliber people, innovative ideas, business models, and the changing nature of markets, using the best data available but operating with incomplete information. Asking the questions above can help to reduce uncertainty over whether entrepreneurs can deal with unexpected challenges that arise from the effects of their innovations. Investing in responsible innovation not only benefits society, it protects the viability of technological progress in a democratic system. For venture capitalists, this is the wise approach.


Monday, 20 May 2019


News You May Use!

The Definition of The Kilogram Will Change Forever. Here's What That Really Means

Finally, 130 years after it was established, the kilogram as we know it is about to be retired. But it's not the end: tomorrow, 20 May 2019, a new definition will be put in place - one that's far more accurate than anything we've had until now.

After the shift was unanimously voted in at the General Conference on Weights and Measures in Versailles at the end of last year, the change is now finally about to become official. Le kilogramme est mort, vive le kilogramme.

Most people don't think about metrology - the science of measurement - as we go about our day. But it's vastly important. It's not just the system by which we measure the world; it's also the system by which scientists conduct their observations.

It needs to be precise, and it needs to be constant, preferably based on the laws of our Universe as we know it.

But of the seven base units of the International System of Units (SI), four are not currently based on the constants of physics: the ampere (current), kelvin (temperature), mole (amount of substance) and kilogram (mass).

"The idea," explained Emeritus Director of the International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM) Terry Quinn to ScienceAlert, "is that by having all the units based on the constants of physics, they are by definition stable and unaltering in the future, and universally accessible everywhere."

For example, a metre is determined by the distance light travels in a vacuum in 1/299792458 of a second. A second is determined by the time it takes for a caesium atom to oscillate 9,192,631,770 times.
A kilogram is defined by… a kilogram.

No, literally. It's a kilogram weight called the International Prototype of the Kilogram (IPK), made in 1889 from 90 percent platinum and 10 percent iridium, and kept in a special vault in the BIPM headquarters.

In fact, the kilogram is the only base unit in the SI still defined by a physical object.

There are copies of the IPK in various locations around the world, which are used as national standards and occasionally sent back to France to be compared against the prototype.

And that's where things get interesting - the mass of these copies has been observed to be drifting away from that of the IPK locked away in the vault. It's unclear whether the copies were losing mass or the IPK was gaining mass, but neither scenario is ideal for scientific precision, even if we're dealing with mere micrograms.

For the last few years, metrologists have been talking about the need for a new standard. Now, they're finally ready to redefine the kilogram based on the Planck constant, the ratio of energy to frequency of a photon, measured to its most precise value yet only last year.

"It is only now that we can define the kilogram in terms of a constant of physics - the Planck constant, the speed of light and the resonant frequency of the caesium atom," Quinn explained.

"Why all three? This is because the units of the Planck constant are kgm2s-1, so we need first to have defined the metre (in terms of the speed of light) and the second (in terms of the caesium atom in the atomic clock)."

So under the new definition, the magnitude of a kilogram would be "set by fixing the numerical value of the Planck constant to be equal to exactly 6.626 069… × 10–34 when it is expressed in the SI unit s–1 m2 kg, which is equal to J s."

That won't make any perceivable difference to most people's lives at all - a kilogram of apples before the change is still going to be a kilogram of apples after the change - but it will make a difference to metrologists in particular, and scientists in general.

Because, as noted, base unit standards can rely on other base units. The candela, the ampere, and the mole will be redefined to greater accuracy based on the kilogram. And, as for scientists...

"[The new definition] will considerably improve the understanding and elegance of teaching about units," Quinn said. "It will open up the way to unlimited improvements in accuracy of measurements, it will improve greatly the accuracy and extend the possibilities of making accurate measurements at very small and very large quantities."

It will be the end of an era, truly - and also the beginning of a new one.

As for the IPK itself, the small piece of metal that has been so important for so many years will continue to be kept in the same conditions it always has, under two bell jars in a climate-controlled vault.

That's partly to honour its legacy; but scientists will always be scientists. It will also be studied "in future years and decades we can observe how much its mass changes," Quinn said, this time against the new, immutable definition of the kilogram. So finally we'll be able to tell for sure if it has actually been losing mass all this time.

Quinn also noted that, while it may look complex, the new system can actually be easily understood by anyone. He himself built a simple balance out of Lego in his basement that can measure directly against the Planck constant, within 5 percent.

"School children," he said, "will be able to have immense fun with this."

The new kilogram definition will come into effect on World Metrology Day: 20 May 2019.

Source Credit: Sciencealert

Saturday, 18 May 2019


Let’ Know What’s There In The Book

AN INTRODUCTION TO ASTROPHYSICS, Second Edition

This invaluable book, now in its second edition, covers a wide range of topics appropriate for both undergraduate and postgraduate courses in astrophysics. The book conveys a deep and coherent understanding of the stellar phenomena, and basic astrophysics of stars, galaxies, clusters of galaxies and other heavenly bodies of interest.

Since the first appearance of the book in 1997, significant progress has been made in different branches of Astronomy and Astrophysics. The second edition takes into account the developments of the subject which have taken place in the last decade. It discusses the latest introduction of L and T dwarfs in the Hertzsprung-Russel diagram (or H-R diagram). Other developments discussed pertain to standard solar model, solar neutrino puzzle, cosmic microwave background radiation, Drake equation, dwarf galaxies, ultra-compact dwarf galaxies, compact groups and cluster of galaxies.

Problems at the end of each chapter motivate the students to go deeper into the topics. Suggested readings at the end of each chapter have been complemented.

Contents
Foreword • Preface • Preface to the First Edition
1. ASTRONOMICAL INSTRUMENTS
2. BASIC PHYSICS
3. MAGNITUDES, MOTIONS AND DISTANCES OF STARS
4. SPECTRAL CLASSIFICATION OF STARS
5. THE SUN
6. ATMOSPHERE OF STARS
7. BINARY AND MULTIPLE STARS
8. VARIABLE STARS
9. ERUPTING AND EXPLODING STARS
10. MORE STARS OF INTEREST
11. CLUSTERS AND ASSOCIATIONS OF STARS
12. GALACTIC NEBULAE
13. INTERSTELLAR MATTER
14. STRUCTURE AND EVOLUTION OF STARS
15. NEUTRON STARS AND BLACK HOLES
16. OUR GALAXY
17. EXTERNAL GALAXIES
18. CLUSTERS OF GALAXIES
19. RADIO GALAXIES
20. QUASARS
21. COSMOLOGY
22. BIOASTRONOMY
Index

About the Authors
BAIDYANATH BASU, Ph.D. has been Professor and Head, Department of Applied Mathematics, Calcutta University. He did his postgraduation in astronomy at the University of California at Berkeley.
Author of numerous research papers, Professor Basu has made significant contribution to the field of galactic structures, galactic dynamics and star formation.

Dr. TANUKA CHATTOPADHYAY, Ph.D., is a faculty member in the Department of Applied Mathematics, Calcutta University. She is a Visiting Associate of Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), Pune since 2002. She has published many research papers in national and international journals in the field of astrophysics. Dr. Tanuka Chattopadhyay has been bestowed with several major research projects funded by the University Grant Commission/Department of Science and Technology. She is a member of the International Statistical Institute (ISI) Astrostatistics Committee since 2010.

SUDHINDRA NATH BISWAS has assisted Dr. Baidyanath Basu in writing the book entitled An Introduction to Astrophysics under the UGC fellowship scheme for the preparation of university level books by Indian authors. A teacher by profession, he holds a Master’s degree in science and a Bachelor’s degree in teaching. He retired as Headmaster of Sonamukhi B.J. High School, Bankura, West Bengal.
Sri Biswas has published many semi-technical and a few research papers in the area of astrophysics. He has also taught, during the period 1982–1996, students undergoing ‘Introductory Courses on Astrophysics’ organized by the Indian Astronomical Society at several University Colleges of Science, Kolkata.


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Friday, 17 May 2019


Special Offer Title -  30% Off

A TEXTBOOK OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERING THERMODYNAMICS, SECOND EDITION 
By K.V. NARAYANAN

Designed as an undergraduate-level textbook in Chemical Engineering, this student-friendly, thoroughly class-room tested book, now in its second edition, continues to provide an in-depth analysis of chemical engineering thermodynamics. The book has been so organized that it gives comprehensive coverage of basic concepts and applications of the laws of thermodynamics in the initial chapters, while the later chapters focus at length on important areas of study falling under the realm of chemical thermodynamics. The reader is thus introduced to a thorough analysis of the fundamental laws of thermodynamics as well as their applications to practical situations. This is followed by a detailed discussion on relationships among thermodynamic properties and an exhaustive treatment on the thermodynamic properties of solutions. The role of phase equilibrium thermodynamics in design, analysis, and operation of chemical separation methods is also deftly dealt with. Finally, the chemical reaction equilibria are skillfully explained.

Besides numerous illustrations, the book contains over 200 worked examples, over 400 exercise problems (all with answers) and several objective-type questions, which enable students to gain an in-depth understanding of the concepts and theory discussed.

The book will also be a useful text for students pursuing courses in chemical engineering-related branches such as polymer engineering, petroleum engineering, and safety and environmental engineering.

New to This Edition
• More Example Problems and Exercise Questions in each chapter
• Updated section on Vapour–Liquid Equilibrium in Chapter 8 to highlight the significance of equations of state approach
• GATE Questions up to 2012 with answers

Contents
Preface
Preface to the First Edition
1.    Introduction and Basic Concepts
2.    First Law of Thermodynamics
3.    P-V-T Behaviour and Heat Effects
4.    Second Law of Thermodynamics
5.    Some Applications of the Laws Thermodynamics
6.    Thermodynamic Properties of Pure Fluids
7.    Properties of Solutions
8.    Phase Equilibria
9.    Chemical Reaction Equilibria
Appendixes
Answers to Problems
Index

About the Author
K.V. NARAYANAN, PhD, is former Professor and Head, Department of Chemical Engineering, Government Engineering College, Thrissur. Before that, he was Professor and Head, Department of Chemical Engineering, Government Engineering College, Kozhikode. Dr. Narayanan has about 30 years of teaching experience and is a member of several professional bodies. He has also served as Principal in various engineering colleges for about 10 years. The author of A Textbook of Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics, Second Edition (published by PHI Learning), he has contributed a number of research articles to reputed international journals.

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