Tag Archives: news

Up Close with Ebola

Around the world we’re starting to see same-old knee-jerk stuff. Irrational reactions to Ebola hurt us all: World Health Organization Director-General Margaret Chan says that 90 per cent of economic costs of an epidemic ‘come from irrational and disorganized efforts of the public to avoid infection.’ ‘Public’ includes public officials and push-button politicians and panicky […]

Ebola Concepts You May Want to Understand

Ebola is a scary virus. Most know it is deadly. It is an international problem. We need evidence-based action to solve it, not play-on-fear border closings (c.f., SARS and swine flu) that do no good but damage the economy. We need a public conversation on ebola and it might be aided by some terms you […]

When Science Gets It Wrong

“Gravitational waves turn to dust” shouts a headline in The Guardian newspaper. Its news is that last month’s news of a Harvard team’s discovery of gravitational waves from the beginning of time may not reveal such waves at all. That stunning signal could have come from grains of dust in space. It’s no surprise when […]

Cold Comfort: Physics Cures the Common Cold

It’s still the sniffle season and there’s still no cure for the common cold. So says the Mayo Clinic; so say many others. They are wrong. Here is the long-sought cure. No kidding. It turns out to be spectacularly unspectacular. It is simple physics. (That’s too bad; if it were complex chemistry it would be […]

Exotic Not-Erotic Hadrons vs Gravitational Ripples

I’m taking time out from Pristina. Exotic hadrons are the rage this week. Suddenly a cipher, Z(4430), seems to be sexy. What’s exotic? Well, not-exotic, plain-vanilla hadrons are particles of matter. They include baryons―the protons and neutrons that are stable in nuclei of atoms that we see, and unstable particles called mesons that fly unseen […]

Fair Go at Sochi Olympics

In Aussieland, from whence I am, Fair go is slang for reasonable opportunity. In New Zealand it’s a TV show. What’s a fair go on the ice or snow or track or in the pool? Picture this. You’re in the starting blocks at the Olympics. You’ve trained for years to make it for your one […]