• Greg Baker

Favorite Colors

Favorite Colors (reprinted from the Metro Spirit 8-15-13)

The discussion of favorite colors is a popular topic of childhood.  My two daughters talk about colors for hours, describing why one color is better than another.  For example, orange is great for pumpkins and leaves, but “I don’t think it makes a very good dress.  At least not for me, Daddy.”    Fortunately, my girls mostly agree on colors (at least for now), and each espouses their own signature tint.  The one daughter loves the color blue, but not in a fanatical way.  She doesn’t seem to be partial to any particular shade, and she will wear clothes of different colors.  But when the crayons get put to use, the sky, a lake and big blue eyes always stand out.

My other daughter is obsessive.  Her pallet consists of a single hue.  Weeks can go by before we see her dressed in a different shade.  This color features prominently in her drawings.  Quite literally, we have multiple books where this color is the central theme.  So I can’t understate how much fun it was watching my daughter’s reaction when I showed her a news article on my iPad.

“Hey, sweetie, guess what?  They found a pink planet!”

The planet’s name is GJ504b, and astronomers estimate it’s about four times the size of Jupiter.  The star system is about 57 light years away, and the star can be seen with the naked eye in the constellation Virgo.  The determination that the planet is pink (technically, a “dark cherry blossom”) is actually a fairly big deal.  GJ504b is only the second planet outside the solar system to be successfully imaged.  Typically, planets around other stars are detected by observing gravitational “wobbles” caused by the planet’s orbit.

GJ504b also calls into question some of the assumptions we have regarding planetary formation.  In short, the planet is too big given how far away it is from its sun.  According to the scientific models, the planet shouldn’t be there.

That would be fine as far as Mattel is concerned.  After all, the Mars Explorer Barbie that was released last week just became obsolete.

Green Apples – September 10th is the date.  On that day, Apple is expected to release its new iPhone.  Most analysts expect that the new model will be called iPhone 5s.   Other than using the new iOS 7 operating system, only minor performance improvements in the base model are expected.  The most anticipated announcement is in regards to an expected iPhone 5c.  This iPhone model is expected to be released at a lower price point.  Instead of aluminum, the casing is made of plastic and is available in several colors: red, blue, yellow, green and white.  Historically, Apple has used older models to address lower prices points, so this would be a big change in Apple strategy.

Until next time, I’m off the grid. @gregory_a_baker

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