academia

Category archives for academia

New Frontiers in Astronomy

The New Frontiers in Astronomy and Cosmology program has announced its Award winners! The $4+ million in awards went to 20 scientists studying Big Questions on fundamental issues and 21 high school and university student essay prize winners. The awards will be presented at a conference at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia next week. The…

sequestration summary

The OMB has reported on the effects of sequestration that will be triggered Jan 2013 unless Congress proactively changes the law before then. Some time ago, Congress set itself a trap: in an attempt to look like they were dealing with government spending and the deficit, they passed a law that triggers automatic cuts to…

how low can you go…

a few years ago, during a particularly busy period, I found myself putting “take a shower” on my To Do Lists… not so much because I needed the reminder, though people may differ on that point, but more for the temporary morale boost of being able to cross at least one point off the To…

Fit for Physics

Ah, semester has started, and with it comes the grind of studying for the big test, where callow highschoolers finally get to see if they can make it in the big leagues. Here we see them in lecture: One of the 30 or so in class lectures before the test Yes, football players go to…

Le Pas du Chat Noir

Meet Henri… he is a cat. Part deux is a masterpiece. Silly, but excellent.

linkedy links III

Choose what the VLT observes – public vote on a science target one night this autumn Ralph Cicerone Public Lecture – Contemporary Climate Change as Seen through Data – video of Ralph Cicerone lecture on Climate Change at the Aspen Center for Physics this summer Cliff at Asymptotia summarises the “Future of Physics” public symposium…

linkedy links II

More random topics that crossed my path: bureaucratic entropy: “…In 1987, except at private research universities, where administrators outnumbered tenure-track faculty, colleges had approximately as many tenure-track faculty as full-time administrators. By 2008 there were more than twice as many administrators as tenure-track faculty at all types of institutions.” Cuts loom for US science. Wise…

A Kind of Alternative Magic

In which we ask, what would you do if you could change your own personal history? A Kind of Magic! – No, that is not a non-Higgs boson, it is the Astronomy Magazine competition to win a signed copy of Brian May’s PhD thesis in astronomy. “To enter the contest, submit a short essay (200…

Physics Wins Big

$3 million each for 9 theorists from Yuri Milner Foundation Fundamental Physics Prize IAS big winner. Milner Prize: Guth (MIT), Linde (Stanford); Arkani-Hamed, Maldacena, Seiberg and Witten (IAS); Kitaev (Caltech); Kontsevich (IASS); and, Sen (Chandra Institute). String theory, inflation and quantum computing. Heavy on IAS, the Techs and Russian expats. All good choices. Follows hard…

linkedy links I

time for all new linkedy links here at the new digs Quantum Frontiers – a new blog from the Institute for Quantum Information and Matter, with kickoff by John Preskill hisself. Question of the day: explain quantum mechanics in five words My attempt: Probability Amplitudes, Observables don’t Commute Good to know John still does khakis…