occasional meanderings in physics' brave new world
- Name: Kea
- Location: New Zealand
Marni D. Sheppeard
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Ben Webster asks us where and how we would build a new research institute. As previously mentioned, I would build a centre for pure Category Theory and its applications in everything from physics and computer science to neuroscience and linguistics. John Armstrong has already signed up for an NZ based institute. The first question is, urban or rural? Come on. This is the 21st century, so let's choose somewhere pleasant to live, where time off from the office can be spent on a variety of outdoor activities. Kaikoura is the place. Lonely Hapuku hut is only a few hours walk from potential institute sites in the lower Hapuku valley. There is access to a large area of scenic mountain hiking. One could take an easy walk up the Mt Fyffe road in the morning and then enjoy whale watching in the afternoon. If tired of swimming with the seals, or skiing, or wine tasting, one could always turn to a geological tour. The so called Kaikoura orogeny, beginning about 25 million years ago, is the uplifting process that forms the Southern Alps. This institute would be cheap to build, since Kaikoura is sparsely populated. It is easily accessible by road and rail from Christchurch, three hours away.