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G-spots : Saint-Girons

Roy Lisker (remember him from the Mormoiron post?) has written up his Grothendieck-quest(s), available for just 23$, and with this strange blurb-text: “The author organized a committee to search for him that led to his discovery, in good health and busily at work, in September, 1996. This committee has since become the Grothendieck Biography Project. […]

Why does toothpaste make orange juice taste awful? (video)

WASHINGTON, Oct. 6, 2014 — It's happened to many of us: Half asleep in the morning, you finish brushing your teeth and reach for your daily glass of orange juice. After taking a big swig, you spit it back out, making a face like you've just chewed on a lemon. Show More Summary

Ten Reasons Portland Transit Is Not a Model for Other Cities

Randal O'Toole Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx came to Portland, Oregon last week to tell TriMet, the region’s transit agency, not to apologize for spending $204 million per mile on its latest light-rail line. Although thatShow More Summary

My favorite cinematic things Hong Kong

Where to start? 1. John Woo.  The Killer holds up the best on repeated viewings, but Hard Boiled makes the biggest first impression, at least circa the early 1990s.  It is less shocking today, precisely because it has been so influential.  Bullet in the Head has some incredible peak moments, but I’ve never loved A […]

Saturday Night at the Oldies: Route 66

Jack Kerouac in a letter from 17 January 1962: "Everybody is making money off my ideas, like those "Route 66" TV producers, everybody except me...." (Selected Letters 1957-1969, ed, Charters, Viking 1999, p. 326; see also...

My favorite things Kentucky

1. Popular music: The Everly Brothers, I recommend this song.  There is also Loretta Lynn and Dwight Yoakum and Merle Travis, I like this video.  In jazz there is Lionel Hampton. 2. Visual artist: Edgar Tolson, that image is not fully safe for work.  John James Audobon worked in the state quite a bit. 3. […]

Dembski: Still wrong

3 weeks agoAcademics : Pharyngula

William Dembski spoke at the University of Chicago in August, and a video of the talk is available. I tried to watch it, I really did, but I ended up skipping through most of it (one of the advantages of seeing it on youtube!). Here’s my rather stream-of-consciousness monolog as I was flicking like a…

Saturday Interview: Eddie Truman

Eddie Truman is a long-stnading activist from Edinburgh who cut his political teeth in all the major political battles of the 1980s and early 90s. Latterly he was very active in the Yes movement. You can follow Eddie on Twitter here....Show More Summary

Speaking Truth to Parallelism at Cornell

This week I was at my alma mater, Cornell, to give a talk at the 50th anniversary celebration of its computer science department.  You can watch the streaming video here; my talk runs from roughly 1:17:30 to 1:56 (though if you’ve seen other complexity/physics/humor shows by me, this one is pretty similar, except for the […]

Will learning new languages help you pick up girls?

Last summer, a huge publication asked if I would write an article for them about How learning languages will help you chat up girls. … As nice as it would have been to be in that big magazine, I said no thanks. Then, since it was just before the World Cup, they made me a […]

Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It’s getting less warm here in North Dakotaland under clear fall skies. So far most of our trees have their leaves so we have a couple of more weeks before the brief window opens for fall colors. I’ll provide a report from out west next Friday. This week has been fun at the Archaeology of […]

Video: Rare Blue Whale Footage Captured Off California

Underwater footage of the blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) off Laguna Beach. (Photo: Rich German / YouTube) While paddling off Laguna Beach recently, one lucky paddle boarder was in the right place at the right time to spot an elusive blue whale—an endangered marine mammal that’s rarely spotted. Show More Summary

Historical Maps, Topography, Into Minecraft: QGIS

Building your Minecraft Topography(An earlier version of this uses Microdem, which is just a huge page in the butt. I re-wrote this using Qgis, for my hist3812a students) If you are trying to recreate a world as recorded in a historical map, then modern topography isn’t what you want. Instead, you need to create a […]

CERN turns 60

CERN celebrates six decades of peaceful collaboration for science. Today, CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, is blowing out 60 candles at an event attended by official delegations from 35 countries. Founded in 1954,...Show More Summary

Spike activity 26-09-2014

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Why most scientists don’t take Susan Greenfield seriously. A serious rebuttal for some poor scientific claims over at BishopBlog. The Guardian has a good profile of food and flavour scientist Charles Spence who specialises in sensory integration. Couvade syndrome: some men develop signs of […]

Saturday Interview: Evan Smith

Evan Smith is a Vice-Chancellor's Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Flinders University, South Australia, and works at the intersection between contemporary history, politics and criminology, with a little bit of cultural studies thrown in. Show More Summary

Further dramatic readings from bizarre studies, Friday night

We’ll be doing some more Improbable Dramatic Readings — brief public readings from bizarre — yet genuine — scientific studies, this Friday night, September 26, at Porter Square Books, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, starting at 7:00 pm. The studies — which we will treat as if they are dramatic literature written for actors to perform — […]

Anthropomorphic Neuroscience Driven by Researchers with Large TPJs

For immediate release — SEPTEMBER 26, 2014Research from the UCL lab of Professor Geraint Rees has proven that the recent craze for suggesting that rats have “regrets” or show “disappointment” is solely due to the size of the left temporal-parietal junction (TPJ) in the human authors of those papers (Cullen et al., 2014). Show More Summary

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