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In closing

For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled. Nobel prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman, in an appendix to the report on the loss of the space shuttle Challenger.   The first post in this series was put up a little more than two years ago and I’ve written […]

The post In closing appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

Emerson

A foolish consistency

Consistency is good – there’s a sense of security in knowing that some things will generally remain constant over time. We can always count on gravity, for example, to hold us firmly to the ground; politicians are typically pandering and self-serving; I can count on radioactivity to consistently decay away; and so forth. Of course, […]

The post A foolish consistency appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

Don-Quixote

Once more into the breach

I’d been planning on waiting a little longer before returning to the topics of Fukushima and radiation health effects, but a particularly egregiously bad New York Times op-ed piece deserves some attention. So once more into the breach. Writing in the October 30 New York Times, pediatrician and anti-nuclear activist Helen Caldicott used the nuclear […]

The post Once more into the breach appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

death ray

Thank goodness for our schools

Just a short piece this week – the holiday has kept things pretty busy and I’m jotting this down before leaving for a professional meeting. One of the less-covered of recent terrorism-related stories is almost too bizarre to be true – the arrest of some guys in New York (near Albany) who were apparently trying […]

The post Thank goodness for our schools appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

sabretooth duck

Talk science to me

Tom Weller’s Science Made Stupid has my vote as one of the funniest books I’ve read. The only problem is that anymore it seems to be more of a description of Americans’ understanding of science rather than the lampooning of science it was originally intended to be. If trends continue, another two decades might see […]

The post Talk science to me appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

The plots thicken

A couple of weeks ago the Associated Press ran a story that seemed to confirm the world’s fears about Iran’s suspected nuclear weapons program. Central to the story was a plot (shown here) that showed, over a period of a few microseconds, energy and power output from a nuclear weapon. While everyone seems to agree [...]

The post The plots thicken appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

Another reason to avoid the dentist?

As the grandson and nephew of dentists I was probably the only kid at school who actually enjoyed going to the dentist. In fact, it wasn’t until I joined the Navy that I understood why my classmates never shared my enthusiasm for practitioners of the dental arts – having my wisdom teeth removed in preparation [...]

The post Another reason to avoid the dentist? appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.

Pathological junk cargo cult voodoo and just plain bad science

Is there any validity to the science behind global warming? If you believe the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) there’s no doubt that the science behind global climate change is solid; if you listen to the political debate you’ll hear a lot of people call it junk science. The term junk science is also [...]

The post Pathological junk cargo cult voodoo and just plain bad science appears on ScienceWonk, FAS’s blog for opinions from guest experts and leaders.