Category archives for Uncategorized

It’s all chemistry’s fault

An innovative NASA would be nice

NASA has put out a call for novel ideas in space exploration, which I think is an excellent way to do science. More creativity! But this feels like they’re just pandering to me (I know, they’re not): building robotic squid to explore the oceans of Europa? What’s not to love about that idea?

Oliver Sacks has died

I have been increasingly conscious, for the last 10 years or so, of deaths among my contemporaries. My generation is on the way out, and each death I have felt as an abruption, a tearing away of part of myself. There will be no one like us when we are gone, but then there is…

A real chemistry set?

Here’s a cool kickstarter: it’s for a real chemistry set, like the ones we had in old days. Go watch the video, and you’ll see that it actually lets you set things on fire!

What would analog genetics look like?

How about another of those non-awkward Dawkins Twitter questions? Although this one actually is kind of awkward, in a non-offensive way. I don’t quite know what it means. Does evolution rely upon digital genetics? Could there be an analogue genetics? What features of life have to be true all over the universe?

Lonesome George, the last of the Pinta Island Tortoises, died on Sunday. He left no survivors that are known. His death marks the extinction of Chelonidis nigra abingdoni.

Grace under pressure

The BBC is running an interview with Dame Jocelyn Bell-Burnell, and it’s very good. Bell-Burnell is the woman who discovered pulsars, and until I heard this interview, I hadn’t realized how it was done. Yeah, there weren’t computers available so the reams of data came out on strip chart – paper chart – and the…

(Also on FtB)

The abuse thread

I am so bogged down in work…I’m clinging on to the faint hope of liberation as all my deadlines are past next Tuesday (and they will be met! They must!), but until then, I’m thoroughly tied up and sweating over a gazillion things that have to be finished right now. So blogging will be light…

Dawkins lionized

The New York Times has a very nice profile of Richard Dawkins titled A Knack for Bashing Orthodoxy — an an excellent choice of a title, too. (Also on FtB)