September 5th, 2014

Seeing the entire EM-band

Googled: Wikipedia on the Electromagnetic Spectrum. Also this Yahoo! Answers question.

I'm working on an original novel about kids with superpowers and I'm trying to establish parameters for the abilities of one character. I've conceived her as able to perceive the entire EM-band and I'm trying to get a grip on the advantages and disadvantages involved. I think that I can surmise that if she can't learn to filter, out-of-control X-ray vision alone would render her effectively blind. (Try reading a book, when you not only see the words on the page, but the words on the back of the page and on all the pages below. Depth perception is likely to be shot.)

However, since my first and last physics course was over 25 years ago (and I barely passed that!), I'm having some real difficulties understanding what it would mean to be able to see gamma radiation, radio waves, etc. X-ray vision is relatively easy: she's no doctor, but she can see if a bone is broken, or pinpoint the location of a cyst or tumor—though she wouldn't necessarily know what she was seeing. More like, "Alex... you have something on your hip-bone that kind of looks like a bump. I don't see it on anyone else. Maybe it's a problem."

Any suggestions?

Edit: Thanks everyone for your help! I can see this is going to be a lot trickier than I thought. Going to check out some of the sources, though and see how to rework this.

Saluting vs Bowing Precedence

Setting: I'm doing a Royalty AU for a canon that has absolutely zero ties to that kind of thing, so it's probably a medieval-esque fantasyland

What I need to know is this:
Say you are an average knight/soldier and happen to run across a member of the royal family hanging around a military officer of very significantly higher rank than you. This is a situation where, if either of them were alone, you'd bow/salute. But since both of them are there, which do you do first? Or which do you do at all? I should mention that the royal family member in question has not been in the military, in case that changes things.

I've searched things like "bowing vs. saluting" and "when to bow or salute" and "which first, bowing or saluting" but I've only gotten basic etiquette, information only regarding military regulations, and the origins of gestures like these.

It's fine if there's no "right" way, since as mentioned above, it is a kind of fantasyland, so doing what I want isn't out of the question. But I wanted to know if there's an umbrella etiquette for this kind of thing that I could use.