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Commentary and informative articles on science,
medicine, and technology

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astrophoto­graphs

 

 

  commentary

Scene from Idiocracy

Is academic career worthwhile?

Last month, advice for a young scientist. Now, some advice about graduate school.

Andromeda galaxy

The Drake equation reconsidered

  Update: What was the FBI really looking for at Sunspot?

Duga radar

Reverse-engineering the Cuban microwave sonic attacks

Could ordinary radar waveforms produce the strange sounds reported at our embassies?

Frankenstein

Better advice for a young scientist

Thirteen rules based on years of observation of how a science career can go horribly wrong.

LDL particles

Latest theories on the cause of obesity

No one really knows the cause, but the most recent evidence shows it's not just eating too much food.

Clouds

The two faces of depression

  Depression is telling us there is some major thing in our lives we must change.

Mister Spock in an intimate moment with a robot

Emotions are essential for a conscious AI

Sexbots tell us that robots will never be really conscious until they get the capacity for emotion.

linotype

Why are scientists such bad writers?

The softer the science, the longer the paper. Our third installment in how to write good

 libertarianism

Sonogram of bird calls

The sound of freedom

  Technological sounds are drowning out the quiet music of nature.

Chess pieces brawling

Argumentation in a post-logical world

We must become more analytical in detecting and refuting hidden assumptions in the debate.

Lightning

Atheism, Ducks and Bananas

Atheists and religious people both need to work on their sense of humor.

Barbed wire

Eight myths about libertarianism

  Libertarianism is not what many people think.

 science and medicine

Pleiades

Why is the speed of light not infinity?

Wonky Minkowski diagrams, Rindler frames, and quantum foam, oh myyyy . . .

Protein molecule

The future of medicine

  In the future things will be ... uh, better ... mostly

Clouds

Cold facts on global warming

It's still important to understand what is and is not factual about the climate.

Protein molecule

Not your grandfather's theory of evolution

  Darwin's theory of natural selection has mutated almost beyond recognition.




Tinnitus: Causes and Treatment

Recent research suggests that tinnitus is easier to cure when treatment is given early. In this article, I will discuss what is known about tinnitus and what tinnitus sufferers can do about their affliction.

Cow fermions

Are superconductors holograms?

A new idea from string theory finds holograms everywhere.

Bismuth

Bismuth, nature's most uninteresting element

Seven incredibly boring facts about bismuth you will probably believe!

 photography

Solar eclipse

How to Photograph a Solar Eclipse

Without burning up your camera sensor, blinding yourself, and setting your dog on fire.

Mars photographed with unstable camera

How to photograph Mars and other planets

  It's not too late to get your azz to Mazz.

Moon

Star fields in Apollo 11 photographs

  The claim that there are no stars in the moon landing images is examined.

Roof vents

How to take bad cell phone photos

  Some tips on taking the worst travel photos ever.

Radioactivity

Photographing Radioactivity with a Webcam

You can use a webcam to photograph radioactivity.

UV image of sparks

Ultraviolet photography

  The ultraviolet world is gloomy ... and pink.

Infrared image of tree

Infrared photography

It's not difficult to modify a digital SLR camera to take pictures in the near-infrared.

Andromeda

Astrophotography Without a Telescope

You don't need a lot of equipment to take spectacular pictures of the stars.

Fireflies

Fireflies

Firefly biology and tips on photographing fireflies. Movie of fireflies flashing in synchrony.

Oslo lens graphs

Build an Ultraviolet Zoom Lens, Part 1: Design

Design and plans for a fused-silica zoom lens.

Lens

High-resolution compact spectrograph, Part 1

Design and plans for a compact spectrograph suitable for astronomy.

Swan Nebula

Astrophotographs

  A collection of astrophotographs.

  science humor and miscellaneous

Socks

The standard model of sock physics

Socks actually tell us a great deal about quantum mechanics. Unfortunately, most of it is wrong.

Woodpecker

How to Get Rid of Woodpeckers

  Do noise generators and reflector tape actually work?

Crystal cube

The Prophecies of Bruce de Nostradamus

Bruce Nostradamus is not as famous as his older brother, partly because his quatrains were not very good.

Reindeer

Fundamentals of Reindeer Aerodynamics

How did reindeer evolve the ability to fly?