The Magic Clock

(via Massimo Banzi's TED talk via Boing Boing) I've felt for a long time that the best way to make sense of science, as an element of human ability, is to think of it as being, basically, magic.

That's not to say I think science is, or should be, inexplicable.  But science in real life and magic in a lot of fantasy novels have something essential in common -- they're about learning the basic rules of the world's behavior, so you can exploit, bend, or hack them.

Sometimes it feels like this is a tough sell.  But sometimes, it's just incredibly obvious that I'm right.

This is the clock from the Weasley's house in Harry Potter.  The one that points not to the time, but to the location of all the family members:

This thing works.  It actually points to the location of the family members displayed, using twitter to pick up location cues.  The only thing it requires externally is a place to plug it in.  This is the coolest thing I've seen so far this week, and I think it's proof that science is basically magic.