Tag Archives: science

But why?

Acceptance can be over rated.

Ask John Gurdon.

Before the scientist began his experiments on frogs Continue reading

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Explaining the Japanese nuclear crisis using poo

Once you get away from the explosions and help! Help! Radiation! Head for the hills… All this nuclear meltdown China Syndrome in Japan business gets a bit complicated. Too many millisieverts, half lives, critical masses and atomic bomb memories. Should we all be panicking? Or not?

Without wanting to be too complacent – and sitting far from Japan – I think, on balance, not.

Here are two options for you to make sense of it all.

1. Read this book. Physics for Future Presidents by Richard Muller. (Or he’s here on wikipedia.)

Or check out his University of California at Berkeley lectures on YouTube.

2. Or – watch the children’s version of events, using farting and poo. Continue reading

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Imam learns the high price of speaking out

Here’s a happy, sad and messy story about the imam of a London mosque who  preached – or at least opened for discussion the idea – that Islam and the theory of evolution are compatible – and that Muslim women should be allowed to uncover their hair in public. Continue reading

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Actually, the best bit is the video at the bottom

Newton Emerson. Gorgeous ain't he?

By rights we should all be long dead, given what we have to put up with these days. Passive smoking, motorists driving while eating apples, cyclists without helmets, overhead power lines, mobile phones frying our brains.

How we ever made it this far without ending up looking like that bloke on the left, God only knows. Continue reading

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If you must wear a uniform, make it a nurse’s outfit

Not all uniforms are bad news. (Naturally I could have chosen a different sort of nurse outfit picture for here. But as a sign of how mature/boring I've become, I didn't.)

The advance of civilisation and the cultivation of the collective mind would be improved if it were this book rather than the Bible that were placed in the bedside cabinets of hotels throughout the world… Continue reading

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Conkers v. Spiders

ConkerScared of spiders? Tired of cobwebs in your corners? Never fear! There’s a pishogue for everything. An old wives tale, that is.

First, gather some conkers. (Luckily it’s still the tail end of the conker season.) Second, place a conker in every corner of the room where spiders lurk. Third, sit back, relax and wait for the spiders to flee. Fourth, inspect your spider-free corners.Platycryptus Undatus Female

Easy. But this blog would never just blithely dish out advice without subjecting it to rigorous testing. Which might be why my seven-year-old was dropping conkers in corners all round the house. Hey, it’s all part of scientific enquiry and experimentation.

The result? Oh dear. There, snug in the corner, was a conker, with a squat spider on top. “I think spiders like conkers,” said my daughter’s friend from down the street.

So, er… that’s spiders 1, conkers 0. Don’t believe old wives. Get a duster for those cobwebs you lazy pig. And mind you don’t skid on those conkers scattered round your floor.

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