Helium is a great band from Boston that is fronted by a woman named Mary Timony. They originally started out as a "I am woman hear me roar" mystical angry femme band and have since moved on to more quiet, fantasy oriented stuff like Tolkien on a dreamy acid trip. Their stuff is the best. I love em. I love Mary Timony. I know that sounds stupid but she has a way with music. Get Dirt of Luck and start from there.

When you inhale helium, as from a balloon, your voice gets very high for the time that there is still helium in your lungs, in a largish concentration. It also makes one light-headed if there is a high ambient concentration, such as in a car where a bunch of balloons have been burst. It's fun!

(From the Greek helios, "the sun") A colorless, odorless, chemical element, one of the noble gases, having the lowest known boiling and melting points. It is used in cryogenics, as a diluent for oxygen, in deep-sea breathing systems, for inflating balloons, as a protective gas in growing silicon and germanium crystals and in titanium and zirconium production, and as an inert gas shield for arc welding.

Symbol: He
Atomic number: 2
Atomic weight: 4.00260
Density (at 0°C with 101,325 pascals): 0.179 g/L
Melting point (at 26 standard atmospheres of pressure): -272.2°C
Boiling point: -268.93°C
Valence: 0
Ground state electron configuration: 1s2

Heliosia Lost
(fiction)

Yeah, I'm small, what's it to you? I've still got mass, and don't you forget it. They can't take my individuality, I'm my own particle! They'll never get me to interact with other molecules, not without intense pressure or cold, anyway. Myself, I'm the best Helium I can be, but not by choice of course. I guess I'm proud to have the same average kinetic energy as bigger gases for given temperatures.

You could call me an individualist. I don't just bond with any Helium that I happen upon the way Hydrogen does with its buddies. I do my own thing, you know, moving around, all my collisions are elastic. Sure, I'll bump into somebody every now and again, but I do try to keep large amounts of empty space between them and me, if you know what I mean.

So you can understand how I felt when I woke up one day to find myself and 5 moles of other Helium atoms in a two-liter container! The pressure was unbearable, must have been something like 56 atmospheres! I remember thinking to myself that it must be quite an impressive container, but only for a moment. Consultation with a friendly comrade near me revealed that we had been recruited by the U.S. Air Force.

Happy, I was not. I didn't want to work for anyone, I just mind my own business, for Pete's sake. I quickly tried to organize an escape, but the walls of the canister were too dense and thick to escape out of. I attempted the beginnings of a team effort to break the tank before I remembered that we couldn't exert any force on one another. Our outward pressure was equally distributed, and there was nothing we could do about it.

Rumors were already starting to circulate around the vessel. One that seemed likely was that we were taking over for a bunch of Hydrogen. Seemed plausible to me, those incompetents are always overreacting to everything. They'd never keep their heads in the heat of a battle. While some around me had already resigned themselves to their new position in life, the report brought me no pride as it did to them.

After what seemed like weeks in the grueling conditions of our prison, we were finally released into the area where I now find myself. Some rejoiced, but I remained levelheaded. Examination revealed that this environment too was enclosed. Escape seemed possible now, but not likely. Several have made it out, but no one has ever heard from them again. The majority of my comrades have surrendered to their apparent fate. I try to stay optimistic.

I have no control over my life. Some days it is cold, and the environment seems smaller. Some days it is warm, and everyone has more room to move around. Sometimes more Helium joins us. They're a real treat, cheerful and looking for a way out. We tell them our story, but still they think they can escape. It's enough to make me want to cry.

How do I know if the outside world even exists any more? It seems like Graham's law just doesn't hold true now, but we're all Helium in here, so there's no comparison. Maybe nothing gets by the curved walls that hold me in.

At least I'm doing something productive for my country. I never even see any guns. I just hang here, eternally occupied since I'm lighter than air. It's not a bad life, I guess. Never want for anything. Lots of companionship, everyone is just like me. Couldn't really do much on my own, could I? I'm just one atom in a big world. What is freedom anyway? Just another word.

I... I love Big Brother.

homework I have done

Symbol: He
Atomic Number: 2
Boiling Point: 4.216K
Melting Point: 0.95K
Density at 300K: 0.1785 g/cm3
Covalent radius: 0.93
Atomic radius: 0.49
Atomic volume: 31.80 cm3/mol
First ionization potental: 24.587 V
Specific heat capacity: 5.193 Jg-1K-1
Thermal conductivity: 0.152Wm-1K-1
Electrical conductivity: N/A
Heat of fusion: 0.021 kJ/mol
Heat of vaporization: 0.084 kJ/mol
Electronegativity: N/A

Previous Hydrogen---Lithium Next
To the Periodic Table
Besides being the popular Element above, Helium is also the name of a popular mp3 Tagger. For those of you unaware of what a tagger does, it aids you in creating/editing id3 tags. Id3 tags contain all the nifty information about the song, embedded in the file itself. Id3v1 was very simple as you could only put the Artist, Album, Title, Year, Genre, and a Comment. Id3v2 on the other hand has so many options, many very obscure like Payment URL Info.

Back on topic, Helium is a insanely useful tool to help you not only tag your respective files, but to also organize your files aswell. The tagging part of the program is incredibly flexible, it stores the names of artists and tracks so that you only have to type the first few letters in and it will do the rest. Or, if you want you can set it up to create the id3 tag from the filename.

After tagging it you can ask the program to rename the file to your specification, or make the list into a nifty html file, again fully customizable.

Another amazingly cool feature is the Database Explorer, it's for people who burn their mp3s onto cd's alot. If you have a couple of cd's full of mp3s you just put one in, let the program get the listing of the files, and then give the CD a easily recognizable name. Then, if you want to find "54 40 - Ocean Pearl" you just type that into the search box and it'll tell you what CD or CDs its on.

Helium is win32 only, :( It can be found at http://www.helium-mp3.com the demo version can only work with 10 files at a time, so registering is a good plan. If you get Helium, you'll probably also want to grab Argon, its a plugin for winamp that displays all the id3v2 info that winamp doesn't.

The second smallest and second most abundant element in the universe1. Colorless, odorless, tasteless (I assume), nonreactive, consisting of only two protons, two neutrons, and two electrons in its normal state, the lightest of the noble gasses and the first discovered.

In the unimaginably hot interiors of midsize stars, hydrogen undergoes fusion, releasing tremendous energy and yielding helium; consequentially, helium now accounts for about 26% of the universe's stellar mass. The mass of individual helium molecules is so small, however, that the gravity of planet-sized bodies cannot hold them permanently: Earthly helium rises, baloonlike, to the top of the atmosphere (it is a chief component of the rarefied exosphere) and then continues to rise, escaping Earth's main gravitational pull. Its concentration back at sea level is vanishingly tiny, about 5 parts per million.2

Unsurprisingly, then, helium was undiscovered until the 19th century. In 1868, during a solar eclipse, the French astronomer Pierre Janssen pointed a spectrometer at the suddenly visible corona and found a bright yellow line that he took to represent sodium. Later that year, Joseph Lockyer, a British astronomer, outfitted his telescope with a spectrometer and observed that the yellow line did not correspond with the sodium's two known lines. Concluding that he had discovered an element that existed only in the sun, he named it using helios, "Sun" in Greek. In 1895, British chemist William Ramsay analyzed the gas produced in the heating of cleveite, a uranium-containing mineral, and found helium's characteristic yellow line, the first evidence of helium on Earth.3

In the years since, the properties of helium have been revealed. It has, for example, another stable isotope in addition to its two-neutron variety: helium-3, which has only one neutron and is produced in the reverse beta decay of hydrogen-3 (tritium). Tritium being rare, helium-3 is present in concentrations of only about 7 parts per trillion.

The thermal properties of helium are especially interesting. A member of the noble gasses, its molecules are drawn to each other only by dispersion forces, and with an atomic structure so small, even those are almost nonexistent. Consequentially, helium has an extraordinarily low boiling point: 4.22 degrees Kelvin.4 Every other element is a solid below 14.01ºK, at which point hydrogen becomes a liquid. This has made helium a popular coolant for use in cryogenics, and an invaluable tool in superconductivity research.

In addition, helium, uniquely, has a second liquid state5 that begins below 2.8ºK, at which temperature its viscosity drops to almost zero and its thermal conductivity becomes 1,000 times greater than that of copper. Superfluid helium, as it is called, can also flow through capillaries too small for any other element, or, as a thin film apparently oblivious to the law of gravity, flow up and over the rim of its container.

Of course, most people are familiar with more everyday properties of helium. Because of its lower density, sound waves travel more quickly through it than through air, so the frequencies amplified the most by a container with one open end (the particular wavelengths of sound that fit best, called the resonant frequencies) must become higher. This has the well-known effect of raising the pitch of voice of anyone who inhales the substance.6

Perhaps the most famous property of helium is its buoyancy; children marvel at balloons that stretch a string taut and float infinitely upward when released.7 Scientists have found uses for balloons, too - and, after several airship disasters, all of these balloons use helium, rather than the readily combustible hydrogen.

Helium has replaced combustible gasses in heavier-than-air craft, as well. During the early years of the space program, NASA tested the integrity of rockets and spacecraft by increasing the interior pressure to several atmospheres. After a single spark in the dense oxygen atmosphere of an Apollo rocket resulted in a fire that killed the five suited astronauts who were on board testing other systems, pressure tests have been conducted using helium, in spaceships empty of people.

The deep ocean, another high-pressure environment, has presented its own set of difficulties. SCUBA divers use air tanks that pressurize to the water pressure in which they swim, but nitrogen, a chief component of air, has a tendency at high pressures to dissolve in the bloodstream, and is psychoactive. Consequentially, in SCUBA tank air nitrogen is replaced with helium.


  1. After Hydrogen, in both cases.
  2. The natural gas found in the United States, and to a lesser extent in Canada, South Africa, and the Sahara Desert, contains up to 7.6% helium, however. Cooling the natural gas until all elements but helium have liquefied yields gas that is 98.2% pure; using charcoal to absorb the other elements as gasses yields 99.995% purity.
  3. The Earth doesn't undergo fusion, of course (at least, not under normal circumstances). The helium molecules present here are the detritus of an opposite nuclear process, radioactive decay - which nicely explains their presence near uranium, as William Ramsay and Frederick Soddey discovered in 1903. Alpha particles can be considered doubly reduced helium atoms, clumps of two protons and two neutrons, with a positive charge that will quickly attract electrons to form standard helium.
  4. Helium is the only element without a solid phase at 1 atmosphere; at 25 atmospheres, its melting point is about 1ºK.
  5. Helium-3 has a third liquid state, as well, which is also superfluid.
  6. Inhaling helium can also cause oxygen deprivation, so be careful.
  7. The balloons themselves will pop, of course, when the difference in pressure between their interiors and exteriors becomes greater than the strength of their plastic, but the helium will diffuse and continue upward.

Sources:

http://www.britannica.com/bcom/eb/article/1/0,5716,1721+1+1713,00.html
http://www.webelements.com/webelements/elements/text/He/key.html
http://www-solar.mcs.st-andrews.ac.uk/~clare/Lockyer/helium.html
http://daily.stanford.org/Daily96-97/3-12-97/NEWS/NEWbug12.html
http://www.speclab.com/elements/helium.htm

I wrote this in 2000, so I'm sure some of these no longer go anywhere


node your homework

Unbeknownst to most people, helium is a finite, nonrenewable resource. All of the world’s helium is obtained from pockets of trapped gas under the earth. Helium cannot be manufactured in laboratories using reasonable methods, and helium that escapes into the atmosphere remains there, but cannot be recaptured in significant quantities with any presently known technique. The United States has long benefited from some of the Earth’s largest helium deposits, but the Federal government estimates that all major US in-ground helium deposits will be exhausted by 2015. The only option that will be left after that point will be trading for helium on the international market.

For many years, in recognition of helium's rarity, the United States government maintained a Federal Helium Reserve much like the Federal Oil Reserve. However, in 1996 a pro-business Republican Congress pushed through the Helium Privatization Act, directing the Bureau of Land Management to stop producing helium and to sell off the government's stockpile into private hands by 2005.

Today Russia has some of the world's largest remaining helium deposits. However, many these reserves are being squandered. Helium is usually mined in conjunction with natural gas, since helium and natural gas deposits usually occur together, but helium capture requires additional equipment, and helium is not a very profitable commodity, so many Russian companies simply keep the natural gas and allow the helium to escape into the atmosphere where it is effectively lost forever.

In the near future, Qatar will become the world's leading supplier of helium. The small Arab nation controls an estimated 25 percent of all remaining helium reserves, and is only just starting to exploit them, although the Qataran government has plans to aggressively pursue increased helium output, doubling production by 2010.

It would be difficult to argue that helium is essential for human life. Nevertheless, helium has a wide variety of useful applications, especially as an alternative to hydrogen in lighter-than-air travel (such as blimps), and in science experiments where its unique properties have many uses, including fiberoptic cooling, magnetic resonance imaging, and, whistling superfluid gyroscopes. Not to mention those helium balloons we all grew up with.

Enjoy sucking on those helium balloons while they last...

Helium is a commercial writing site where anyone can sign up and submit articles on many different topics. Supported by ad revenue, Helium grants writers a share of the revenue for each pageview of their articles. There is no fixed price for an article, but each article will continue to earn money from being read as long as the site is up. Helium as a site has existed since at least 2005 as Helium Knowledge, a question and answer site, but in September of 2006, it left "beta" status and launched properly as "Helium - Where Knowledge Rules".

Based out of Andover, Massachusetts, Helium is run by Mark Ranalli, President and CEO of the company, as well as at least twelve other management staff. Many other people work both behind the scenes and directly with the writers, however. Jim Logan, aka. Jimzee, works at the help desk and, until recently, answered many user questions on the forums. Barbara Whitlock engages extensively with writers on the forums and is constantly helping and encouraging them there and by email to write quality articles. Janice Brand is the Director of Content and works hard to edit and approve new titles. There are many others as well, but those four in particular are the ones that communicate with the writers on the forums or by email most often.

Helium is similar to E2 in that multiple articles can exist for any title. However, writers cannot create new titles themselves; they must submit an article with a new title to an editing process to have the title approved. This is necessary because articles under the same title are directly compared to give each article a ranking. Titles have to be carefully chosen so that later articles submitted for comparison actually have a basis for comparison. Unlike E2, pieces must directly pertain to their topic so that articles that are compared to each other are about the same thing. Titles are intended to be search-engine optimized (SEO) so they cannot be frivolous or metaphorical.

The primary focus of the site is non-fiction. Many articles are product reviews or how-tos or opinion pieces, although there is a section for creative writing and poetry as well. Each non-fiction article is intended to be a relatively short piece on an individual topic rather than a comprehensive description of every possible piece of information like on E2.

The writers themselves determine the rankings of articles by rating pairs of articles to determine which is better. The rating system gives raters one semi-random pair of articles under the same title at a time. Writers cannot choose which articles to rate because the system is intended to be completely anonymous. It appears to be somewhat random, but in reality, the system is set up to produce articles that both need to be rated and that belong to writers who rate. In other words, rating articles helps your own articles to be rated more often.

Once an article is submitted on Helium, it cannot be directly deleted or edited. The only method for editing an article is the "leapfrog" method, where a new version of an article is submitted for comparison to the existing version. After three ratings, similar to the normal ratings to rank two separate articles, the better version is retained, whichever was ranked higher.

The site has a lot of potential, but it is really still in its infancy, and there are a number of problems that have yet to be fixed. One problem is the rating system itself. The anonymity would appear to be eminently fair, but due to the huge volume of articles on the site, many of them heritage submissions from the "Helium Knowledge" time, the system takes a long time to rate current articles. In addition, the mathematics of the pair system indicate that a title with too many articles will have a large number of possible pairs that each must be rated several times in order to gain an accurate ordering of the articles. Theoretically, the best articles are supposed to "rise to the top," but due to the inefficiency of the rating system, many good articles languish at lower rankings while poor articles maintain the top slots.

Another problem is the presence of many poor articles in the first place. Many are very short submissions written in response to the question and answer format that existed on the beta site. Now that the focus has shifted to solid articles, these poor articles are out of place and should really be deleted if Helium wants to maintain its image as a site for knowledge. The staff wants to preserve an inclusive atmosphere by not deleting anything that has already been submitted, however, unless it is actually offensive in some way. So the older submissions remain on the site.

Similar to E2, anything can be submitted to an existing title with no immediate moderation, so even without the poor submissions from the old site, a related problem is the presence of off-topic articles. Oddly enough, there are several places where well-written articles have been submitted to a completely wrong title or category. Despite the extensive staff presence, Helium is relying heavily on its writers to flag inappropriate articles, including these off-topic submissions, so that they can be handled by staff.

The best part of the site is really the way that the staff members quickly respond to writers. As mentioned, there are a few staff members that spend quite a lot of time on the community boards responding to questions and concerns. Helium in general is also very responsive to email. Specific technical or article issues can be sent to the help desk and will usually get a response within a day or two. Suggestions about inappropriate or misplaced articles or errors in titles will usually be carried out promptly. While they don't make every change or provide every piece of information requested, Helium has one of the most responsive group of staff of any commercial website.

The site has potential and is constantly changing and being updated, so it will be interesting to see where it goes in the next year or two. Most likely, significant changes will have to be made to satisfy those that are concerned about quality. Without those changes, only time will tell whether the site will thrive. In the meantime, it is a good place to practice writing and earn a little money on the side.

He"li*um (?), n. [NL., fr. Gr. &?; the sun.] (Chem.)

A gaseous element found in the atmospheres of the sun and earth and in some rare minerals.

 

© Webster 1913


He"li*um (hE"li*um), n. [NL., fr. Gr. "h`lios the sun.] (Chem.)

An inert, monoatomic, gaseous element occurring in the atmosphere of the sun and stars, and in small quantities in the earth's atmosphere, in several minerals and in certain mineral waters. Symbol, He; at. wt., 4. Helium was first detected spectroscopically in the sun by Lockyer in 1868; it was first prepared by Ramsay in 1895. Helium has a density of 1.98 compared with hydrogen, and is more difficult to liquefy than the latter. Chemically, it belongs to the argon group and cannot be made to form compounds. It is a decomposition product of the radium emanation.

 

© Webster 1913

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