Category Archives: Science

Is It Downhill From Now On?

Today’s Guardian has a sobering article on what the environment could be like in 2050. The most worrying aspect is not the environment itself, but the impact it will have on human society. It’s perhaps not such a stretch to … Continue reading

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Climate Crisis

I see that the Guardian has updated its style guide to introduce terms that more accurately describe the environmental crises facing the world, using “climate emergency, crisis or breakdown” and “global heating” instead of “climate change” and “global warming”. All … Continue reading

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Apocalypse Now?

The Guardian review of “The Uninhabitable Earth” by David Wallace-Wells has the subtitle “Enough to induce a panic attack…” I can attest to that. I started reading the book today on the train to Amsterdam, and got thoroughly depressed. Considering … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Nature, Science | 1 Comment

Bohemian Gravity

I know I’m very late to this, but I’ve just come across this via a link in another online forum. Worth a listen…

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Hung Out To Dry – Or Hoist By His Own Petard?

There’s been a disturbance in the Force recently over remarks made by Sir Tim Hunt at a luncheon organised by the Korea Federation of Women’s Science and Technology Associations. He stood up and said: “Let me tell you about my … Continue reading

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Mist Eclipse

Today was an opportunity to see a partial eclipse here in the Netherlands. Unfortunately the weather gods were not smiling. Much of the country had cloudy skies. Here in the Achterhoek, there were not only cloudy skies but heavy mist. … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomy, Science | 3 Comments

The World’s Most Important Operating System

I was saddened to learn today that Bill Hill died of a heart attack back in October 2012. Bill was a Scotsman who started out life as a newspaperman and became a typographer, but ended up working for Microsoft. In … Continue reading

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The Wanderers

A rather impressive short film, with the always impressive words of Carl Sagan. I won’t live to see these scenes in reality, but hopefully some of our species will.

Posted in Astronomy, Film, Science | 4 Comments

Particle Fever

I watched Particle Fever last night. It’s a documentary about the Large Hadron Collider and the search for the Higgs Boson. It’s staggeringly good. Equally staggering is the scale of the physics experiment that the LHC embodies. It’s probably the … Continue reading

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Step Away, Professor Dawkins, Step Away…

One of the reasons why I refuse to use Twitter is because it is impossible to have nuanced conversation and argument in a straitjacket of 140 characters. However, as the saying goes, fools rush in, where angels fear to tread… … Continue reading

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Noctilucent Clouds

When I took the dogs out last night at 11pm, I noticed that there were noctilucent clouds showing up above the Northern horizon. I dashed back and grabbed the camera for a couple of shots before they faded from view: … Continue reading

Posted in Nature, Photography, Science | 1 Comment

Indistinguishable From Magic

Arthur C. Clarke once wrote: Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. That’s the thought behind this video: Box. (hat tip: Richard Wiseman)

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Gee’s Swizz

There was a time, round about 2008, when I was a regular reader of Henry Gee’s blog. He’s a senior editor of Nature, and I found his blog writing amusing enough. After a while though, I found I became somewhat … Continue reading

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Music In The Cathedral

The ISS is one of science’s cathedrals. Scientists can also be musicians. Space Oddity has always been one of my favourite songs. Commander Chris Hadfield brings it all together. The special effects were all provided by nature. Wonderful.

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Feynman’s Philosophy

A good video that nicely summarises the philosophy of Richard Feynman, narrated by Feynman himself. A key section: “You see, one thing is I can live with doubt and uncertainty and not knowing. I think it’s much more interesting to … Continue reading

Posted in Nature, Science | 4 Comments

A New Dawn

We’ve just had twenty solar panels installed on the roof. Apparently, we’ve joined a growing trend in the Netherlands. In 2012, there was 260 MW of energy produced via solar panels – a doubling of what was produced in 2011. … Continue reading

Posted in Science, Society | 2 Comments

The Challenger

Last night, BBC Two showed “The Challenger” – a film dramatisation of the public inquiry (the Rogers Commission) that investigated the causes of the catastrophic accident that befell the space shuttle Challenger. The film has the title Feynman and the … Continue reading

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Great British Innovations

Via Gia Milinovich’s blog, I came across the Great British Innovations web site, which is asking members of the public to vote for their top past and future scientific innovations. The results will be announced on the 25th March 2013. … Continue reading

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My Precious…

Lawrence Krauss, articulating both the wonder and the insignificance of humanity. I agree. No gods required.

Posted in Science, Society | 4 Comments

RIP Patrick

So Sir Patrick Moore has died – at the age of 89. I can’t say I’m surprised, he has not looked at all well in his recent Sky at Night programmes, but it is still sad news. I grew up … Continue reading

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