Toronto’s made jumpers throughout the playoffs have been by far the most suspenseful of those of any of the final eight teams, taking an average of 0.117 seconds to fall into the basket. That hang time was 44 percent longer than the average of the other seven clubs. And looking at a larger sample size doesn’t change much about the result: At an average of 0.108 seconds, the Raptors’ successful regular-season jumpers at Scotiabank Arena took longer to fall through the basket than any other team’s makes on their home courts, too, according to the SportVU analysis. You might remember that Leonard hit a game-winner in March against Portland — a fadeaway from Scotiabank’s right baseline, with the shooter’s bounce and all — that looked almost identical to the one he would eventually make against Philadelphia.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/KawhiBLAZERS.mp400:0000:0000:12Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.To be clear, even though the Raptors have the longest hang time at home, their numbers are far from an outlier in the data set. The arena did have an odd rim-related issue last season, when officials had to delay a game because one of the rims was slightly crooked and required an adjustment. But no one could look at the numbers presented here and realistically suggest that anything about them is crooked, or that the arena’s rims are fundamentally different from others in the NBA.Still, there’s no doubting the fact that Toronto has gotten a couple of very friendly bounces over the course of the playoffs — not just from Leonard, but also from Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet, who told me somewhat candidly, “I hate our rims.” (While that might sound odd, given his incredible hot streak lately, VanVleet had struggled mightily the last two postseasons from the perimeter.)Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/BOUNCES.mp400:0000:0002:21Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.There are a number of potential factors to consider with unusual data like this. One counterintuitive example: A team with dead-eye shooters, for instance, often won’t get opportunities for much hang time on the rim because their jumpers will swish through the net, registering a minuscule amount of time around the basket as a result. At the same time, though, players and teams who use considerable arc might be better positioned to get a beneficial bounce or roll, regardless of how soft or tight the rims are.2Midrange shots usually require less arc than 3-pointers, so a team taking more triples — like the Raptors, who have taken more than 40 percent of their shot attempts from that distance this postseason — might ultimately get more soft bounces. And no team has put more air under its 3-pointers this postseason than Golden State.In fact, while the Raptors’ shots have had the most hang time on the rim during home games, the Warriors have seen the league’s biggest home-road disparity in terms of how much longer the ball has teetered on the basket while playing in familiar confines. Golden State’s jumpers have stayed in the vicinity of the rim 0.02 seconds longer at Oracle Arena this postseason than on the road, by far the biggest gap of any playoff club. By contrast, Toronto’s shots actually hang near the rim slightly longer on the road than they do at home, so it’s hard to claim a soft-rim advantage at home for the Raptors. Trail Blazers-0.001 76ers0.216 Raptors0.224s Raptors-0.008 On jump shots of 10 feet or more, among teams that advanced beyond the first round of the playoffs.Sources: STATS SportVU, SECOND SPECTRUM Celtics-0.004 The notion of shot arc is where Leonard’s series-ending jumper comes into play. While Kawhi generally doesn’t put much arc on his shots at all, he had to loft the one against Philly over the outstretched hand of 7-footer Joel Embiid to avoid having it blocked. Leonard’s shot reached a peak height of 18.2 feet before bouncing on the rim — a night-and-day difference from the league-average peak height of just 15.1 feet. The extra height almost certainly gave the shot a greater chance of going in from a physics standpoint.And that shot is the first thing that comes to mind now whenever the Raptors benefit from seemingly lucky bounces. VanVleet, even with his expressed hate for the Toronto rims, has fully leaned into the idea that something magical — with the baskets or otherwise — is happening here.“I think we’ve got a special thing going. Just kind of the aura, and the magic in the air, you can feel it a little bit,” VanVleet told me. “We have a lot to do with that, our fans have a lot to do with that, and things are just going the right way for us.”Check out our latest NBA predictions. Bucks0.206 Celtics0.210 Are the Raptors getting lucky rolls on their home rims?How long shots hang on the rim by team in home games, 2019 playoffs TEAMADDED HANGTIME AT HOME On jump shots of 10 feet or more, among teams that advanced beyond the first round of the playoffs.Sources: STATS SportVU, SECOND SPECTRUM The Warriors’ shots survive on the rim longer at Oracle ArenaHow long shots hang on the rim at home vs. on the road by team, 2019 playoffs Warriors+0.020s Trail Blazers0.220 Rockets+0.006 Bucks0.000 Rockets0.181 TEAMBALL IN VICINITY OF RIM 76ers-0.006 Nuggets0.208 Warriors0.214 Nuggets-0.014 Kawhi Leonard’s rainbow arc game-winner in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals over Philadelphia — a buzzer-beating miracle that bounced on the rim four separate times, for 1.8 seconds, before falling through — was historic the second it went down. And that shot will arguably become even more iconic if and when the Toronto Raptors dethrone the Golden State Warriors’ dynasty in the coming days. Few shots have provided that sort of drama while also indirectly ushering in what figures to be a changing of the guard in the sport as we know it.Because of that shot, it’s been hard not to notice the others that have all but taken up residence on the cylinder at Scotiabank Arena. “Those rims are really soft,” Raptors guard Kyle Lowry said.But do shots really hang on the rims more in Toronto? Will the Raptors have some hidden advantage when they take their home court and try to close out the NBA Finals in Game 5? As it turns out, yes, the Raptors’ jump shots do roll on and around the rim longer in Toronto than other teams’ jumpers do in their respective arenas. But no, that isn’t somehow evidence of anything underhanded at play.In an analysis of Second Spectrum shot-tracking data run by Matt Scott of STATS SportVU, we looked at all jumpers of 10 feet or greater, both in the regular season and the playoffs, and pulled the time measured between when the ball hit the rim and when it left the vicinity of the cylinder for a miss or went through the net for a make. The Raptors’ jump-shot attempts at home this postseason have bounced on or around the rim for an average of 0.224 seconds, the longest of any team to advance beyond the first round.1Even if you exclude Leonard’s wild shot against the Sixers from the data set, the Raptors’ jump-shot attempts have still hung on or around the rim longer, on average, than any other team that made it to the second round. read more

first_img Searching for defects in space Citation: String Theory Gets a Boost (2008, January 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-01-theory-boost.html This models a small region of the observable universe right after strings have formed, at around 10^{-36} sec, when the distances between them were still only a few times their thickness. Credit: Mark Hindmarsh Cosmic strings are present in many high-energy physics theories. They are thought to be spaghetti-like structures, each mile weighing perhaps as much as our entire planet. Despite the weight, widths are thought to be significantly smaller than an atom. However, their existence has yet to be detected. Now, though, a team of cosmologists has discovered some hints that cosmic strings exist. “At the moment,” Martin Kunz, a scientist at the University of Geneva when the paper was written, tells PhysOrg.com, “what we have found slightly prefers, or at least does not disfavor, cosmic strings.” Kunz is part of a team led by Mark Hindmarsh of the University of Sussex in Brighton, U.K., using measurements of the cosmic microwave background radiation to search for evidence of cosmic strings. This team, which includes Neil Bevis at Imperial College in London and Jon Urrestilla at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, USA, have reported their findings in Physical Review Letters: “Fitting Cosmic Microwave Background Data with Cosmic Strings and Inflation.”“As these strings move around,” Kunz explains, “they will cause perturbations, attracting matter behind them. These perturbations become visible in the comic microwave background radiation. If there are cosmic strings, they induce extra perturbations that could be indirectly detected.” In order to determine whether cosmic strings might be possible, Kunz and his peers factored a variety of parameters into a supercomputer and created different models. “We made new simulations of traces of cosmic strings,” Kunz says. “We calculated perturbations from standard inflation and calculated them from cosmic strings. We did model comparisons.” The result was that, after predictions were compared to cosmic microwave data from NASA’s Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe, it appeared that theories including cosmic strings offer the best explanation for the pattern of microwave radiation present in the universe.Kunz cautions that cosmic strings are far from an absolute. “We need more data,” he insists. “While this result slightly favors cosmic strings, it isn’t conclusive.” Kunz says that better data may come from the Planck Satellite mission, which is due for launch this year by the European Space Agency.“If we could detect strings,” Kunz points out, “it would tell us a lot about particle physics, and help us understand more about the fundamental structure of physics at very high energies, much higher than what can be probed in particle accelerators. Finding strings would be very helpful in areas of fundamental theory.”Until more data is gathered, and more work done in the field, cosmic strings are likely to remain a subject of scientific debate. But this latest work on cosmic strings is encouraging for those who subscribe to string theory – a theory that could possibly tie quantum physics and gravity together, as well as provide a fundamental understanding of high-energy and condensed matter physics.“What this does is show that cosmic strings could account for what we can detect in the universe,” Kunz says. “It doesn’t prove anything, and we do need more data. But it does show us that cosmic strings are worth looking at again. We haven’t detected them yet, but it’s something to watch for.”Copyright 2008 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Among the scientific theories that excite a great deal of controversy are those theories that deal with strings. And the idea of cosmic strings gets as much play as any in scientific circles.last_img read more

first_imgJanuary 22, 2015 2 min read This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Nowcenter_img While online education has been gaining traction in America for roughly 15 years, the inevitable maturation and spread of this technology into developing countries is bound to spark a revolution.That was a key takeaway from a letter penned by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation — which, with an endowment of $42.3 billion, represents one of the largest private foundations on earth.On this, its 15th anniversary, the Foundation laid bare its hopes for the world over the next 15 years — including the prediction that online education will reach hundreds of millions of people across the globe.Related: Duolingo, the Chart-Topping Language App, Unveils a Platform for TeachersThe growth of high-speed cell networks and a proliferation of affordable devices will largely fuel this accessibility.Children who have grown up with smartphones and tablets, for instance, tend to utilize them intuitively. Therefore, according to the Foundation, kids in third world countries will eventually be able to learn letters and numbers before even entering primary school, aided by software that adjusts to various learning speeds.The Foundation also envisions online education that better feeds into specific career paths. Whereas early efforts in the field have “amounted to little more than pointing a camera at a university lecturer and hitting the ‘record,’ button,” according to the Gates letter, new coursework would ostensibly hone in on specific professional requirements.Related: The Latest – and Unlikeliest – Man to Reinvent Online EducationPerhaps most vital to the future of education, however — especially in developing countries — is closing the gender gap. One way this can be accomplished is by putting technology in the hands of women. In Africa and South Asia, for instance, women are far less likely than men to own a cell phone.While education can be a powerful force for equality, if such pain points aren’t addressed, writes the Foundation, “then education will become another cause of inequity, rather than a cure for it.”For more predictions about how the world might look in 2030, check out the Gates letter in full right here.Related: Bill Gates’ 5 Favorite Books of 2014 Enroll Now for Freelast_img read more