Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Bohr's Dueling Discovery

Niels Bohr (1885-1962)
Unfortunately this summer I wasn't able to finish as many posts as I had hoped, so rather than a full post today, here is a tidbit.  As per the latest poll, up this week is Niels Bohr! But there is a lot to talk about, particularly with respect to the atom, so instead, I'll talk about something you probably didn't know. One of Niels Bohr's contribution to science derived from his love of western films. He noted that the bad guys always drew first, but the good guys always won, and wondered if it was actually the case that the person who drew second won more often. He went out and purchased some cap guns and "dueled" his friends to find out. Sure enough, always drawing second, he won. Recently, proving that Bohr didn't just have faster reflexes than his friends, Andrew Welchman at the University of Birmingham confirmed that the second person to draw is milliseconds faster to the trigger. So stick to your hobbies!  You never know where they may lead.