Adventures in Ethics and Science

Archives for August, 2009

Recently, Steinn brought our attention to some of the difficulties involved in getting a scientific journal to publish a “Comment” on an article. He drew on a document (PDF) by Prof. Rick Trebino of the Georgia Institute of Technology School of Physics detailing (in 123 numbered steps) his own difficulties in advancing what is supposed…

Dem’s fightin’ words!

It was decided that the Free-Ride offspring are maybe, kind of, old enough to watch Raiders of the Lost Ark without having nightmares. Even though they haven’t seen it before, they seem to have picked up at least some general information about Indiana Jones as one of the canonical figures in American pop culture. Dr.…

Ethan Siegel at Starts with a Bang shares some thoughts about productive argumentation and a graphic to illustrate various approaches: I find myself fascinated with the graphic itself. In particular, I’m pondering what rhetorical work the pyramid does here.

Thanks again to the generosity of Free-Ride friend LO, the elder Free-Ride offspring will be partaking in this year’s Kids Day at SLAC today. And, once again, the younger Free-Ride offspring is chagrined to be too young to participate. Since next year both sprogs will meet the age requirement, though, the younger Free-Ride offspring got…

I’m not a regular reader of USA Today, but Maria tweeted this story, and I feel like I need to say something about it or else risk leaving it rattling around in my head like marbles under a hubcap: About 70% of Americans agree, either somewhat or strongly, that it’s beneficial for women to take…

Lunch plate audit.

PalMD is trying to eat better (and drop a little weight). Dr. Isis has been offering some advice on what sorts of meals might help Pal cut the calories while still being healthy and satisfying. Pal has been taking the advice to heart, but finds time constraints an impediment to the kind of food he…

For those of you who have been following the various online reviews of and reactions to Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum’s book Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future, you may be interested in the Firedoglake Book Salon discussion of the book. The discussion takes place Saturday (tomorrow), 5-7 pm Eastern (2-4 pm Pacific;…

Yesterday afternoon, I attempted to talk with the younger Free-Ride offspring about erosion. It would seem, from our conversation, that it is not just rocks that can erode — recall of material learned in science class can also erode, as can patience. Below is a rough transcript of our chat. I’ll see if I can…

At bedtime, after the reading of the stories, the younger Free-Ride offspring lay upon Dr. Free-Ride’s better half, and Dr. Free-Ride’s better half responded by making strangling noises. Of course, I called in from the other room to remind the children that homicide, whether intentional or accidental, is forbidden in the house. Younger offspring: I’m…

Yes, it’s a day late. Dr. Free-Ride and Dr. Free-Ride’s better half are currently engaged in sprog retrieval maneuvers at the home of the Grandparents Who Lurk But Seldom Comment. What follows is this morning’s attempt to get the Free-Ride offspring to tell us something science-y. Dr. Free-Ride: Were there any things you noticed while…