Category: STEM

  • Runs on mailing lists

    Today I spent the day at the chemistry department in Edinburgh University demonstrating (at their invitation) OPUS with Ron Laird. I frequently receive these sorts of invitations, and that’s nice, but it’s a whole day to go there and back again. I got home and checked my email, and saw dozens of emails about a…

  • Battlestar Galactica near Earth

    I have to say, I’ve enjoyed the “re-imagining” of Battlestar Galactica immensely so far. When it first aired, I thought it was a pretty corny idea, and didn’t watch it, but I watched an odd episode here and there, and I began to realise that this was probably the most slick, dramatic, special effects laden…

  • Wheeler goes through the last event horizon

    This week, John Archibald Wheeler died, from pneumonia at the age of 96. Wheeler was a spectacular physicist, who worked in the areas of General Relativity among other areas, he is the guy who popularised the words “black hole” and “wormhole”, and worked with Einstein in his last years. I hadn’t known that he had…

  • My Old UFO sighting

    I promised previously, when talking about UFO sightings over Bangor, that I would record my own here. As I mentioned then, this doesn’t imply alien craft, but an unidentified flying object, and I’m pretty certain this wasn’t such a craft, or if so, the pilot probably needs an extensive driving ban. Anyway, here’s my record…

  • A* on A levels

    With apologies to Spinal tap… P1. The A level is a great qualification, and it’s going to get even better, they are going to introduce the scale up to A*. P2. A*? P1. Yes, how cool is that? All other qualification only go up to A. P2. Hmm, but wouldn’t it be easier to just…

  • UFO does NOT mean flying saucer

    Ok, it’s another pet peeve posting. The BBC have just posted a story about strange lights seen over Bangor. The summary reads “Residents in County Down have raised the possibility of a UFO sighting above the skies of Bangor.” It’s not a possibility, it was a UFO sighting. That is, they were Unidentified Flying Objects.…

  • “Anyone can teach maths”

    How many times I have heard this quote. I beg to differ. I was on my way home from work yesterday, listening to BBC radio 2. A woman was on making a music request. The presenter (Stuart Maconie) asked her what she did for a living. Woman: “I’m a teacher” SM: “What do you teach?”…