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Evan Lerner

Bjørn Lomborg Switches Sides

Last week, “The Skeptical Environmentalist” Bjørn Lomborg announced that he was skeptical no more. Timed with the release of his new book “Smart Solutions to Climate Change: Comparing Costs and Benefits” Lomborg now says that the world needs an investment of $100 Billion a year to fight global warming. Lomborg denies this is a total…

Though the “publish or perish” life of an academic never rests, it can’t help but be infused with the rhythm of the school year. Perhaps that explains a recent surge in bloggerly analysis of the institutions and infrastructures that infuse this scientific lifestyle. From peer review to data collection, there isn’t facet of this world…

Meet the Matamata

When we last left Darren Naish of Tetrapod Zoology, he was analyzing a famous crytpozoological photograph, purported to be an undiscovered species of big cat, or perhaps the last surviving member of a Tasmanian cat-like marsupial. Of course, Naish generally prefers to write about strange and superlative animals that actually exist (or did at one…

Do you like volcanoes? Italian volcanoes? If so, it’s not hard to guess the one you’re thinking of: the largest volcano in Europe and one of the most active in the world, Mount Etna. And if you have any questions about this famous fulminator, head over to Eruptions, where guest blogger Dr. Boris Behncke of…

“Photographic evidence” is sometimes taken as shorthand for cold, hard proof. Seeing, after all, is believing, and if we have a permanent record of an image that anyone can examine, what more verification can be necessary? Of course, we can’t really trust our eyes or memories, something that has been exacerbated by how trivial manipulating…

Letters and numbers are often mentally grouped together; they’re both simple sets of symbols that are the building blocks for much more complex concepts, and mastering their relationships is a cornerstone of early education. But while illiteracy becomes a major social stigma almost immediately after a young person is introduced to letters, most people can…

The science song is a strange beast; people have surely converted information to rhythms or rhymes as a mnemonic device for millennia, though the idea of “educational music” as a genre has only recently crystallized. Its target audience has oscillated since then; while Tom Lehrer was playing for adults in the 50s and 60s, a…

Making Atoms Cold

While the superstar of the particle physics world, the Large Hadron Collider, gets all of the attention (and the glamor shots), there’s plenty of interesting science that can be done on the atomic level within an otherwise ordinary laboratory on the campus of an update New York university. Consider, for instance,the lab of Uncertain Principles‘…

From “quantum teleportation” to “Superconducting Super collider”, there’s nothing like an unusual word or intriguing turn of phrase to draw someone into a science story. Yesterday, the New York Times’ lead tech writer Nick Bilton took a shine to “charismatic megafauna,” after reading a post on The Thoughtful Animal about social cognition in polar bears.…

Perseid Meteor Shower Peaks Tonight

Every August, the Earth passes through a patch of space that’s a tad grittier than usual; the planet’s orbit intersects with that of the comet Swift-Tuttle, the latter being filled with the cast-off from the slowly melting ice-ball. When this detritus hits Earth’s atmospheres, the massive energy of the collision is enough to produce a…