Category Archives: Astronomy

The Stars Have Names

Here’s an interesting article from the December 6th, 2016 New York Times, Twinkle, Twinkle Little [Insert Name Here], by Dennis Overbye (the print title was “Twinkle, Twinkle, Who?”), about how the International Astronomical Union (IAU) has finally sat down to … Continue reading

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Bad Astronomy, 1

I’m currently reading through the eponymous book by the popular ‘Bad Astronomy’ blogger Phil Plait, now posting regularly at Slate.com, where he celebrates scientific breakthroughs and criticizes anti-science movements (anti-vaxxers, state-sanctioned teaching of creationism, etc.). His first book, which I’ll … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: the vastness of the universe; Hubble photos; the physics of everyday life; science books; creationists and the possibility of alien life

Vox: 11 images that capture the incredible vastness of space. Related: Phil Plait celebrates 25 Years of Cosmic Treasures: Hubble’s 12½ Greatest Hits \\ Physicist Sean Carroll this week references an earlier post that spells out an important point: The … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: Pale Blue Dot; 10 Commandments; Evolution; Tribalistic thinking; Answers for Creationists

I have a batch of links with notes from almost a month ago that I never got around to posting. Let me catch up. On the theme in recent posts of awe-inspiring graphics or videos, here’s a piece by Phil … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: Powers of Ten; Nineteen Eighty-Four doublespeak; Climate change; Failed conservative predictions of doom

Today’s persusing of websites. (I have more links and comments from newspapers and magazines, but not the time at this moment to post…) First, to complement yesterday’s link to Vox’s 40 maps that explain outer space, here is the earliest, … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: The Universe; Narratives and Conservatives; PW reviews; the Right-Wing Myth

Catching up from the past week. First, refining the Provisional Conclusions, I’ve switched the order of the first two, and of the last two. This shifts the entire list to a more positive, rather than negative, spin, I think. \\ … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: The Size of the Universe; The Size of the Planets

» NPR’s blog Cosmos & Culture: Lessons From The Beginning Of Time. One report, among many in the past few days, that the apparent detection of ‘gravitational waves’ from the Big Bang, a year ago, was a false alarm: the … Continue reading

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Interstellar

To begin with, I haven’t seen anyone note the coincidence that recent two films, Interstellar and The Theory of Everything (the Stephen Hawking biopic), both key off a major unsolved problem of physics, the unification of gravity and quantum theory. … Continue reading

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Unafraid of the Dark: Highlights from the last episode of Cosmos

Passages from the last episode of Neil deGrasse Tyson’s “Cosmos”. Early in the episode, he describes a thought experiment: Pick a star, any one of the hundreds of billions of stars in our Milky Way galaxy, which is just one … Continue reading

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Salon on Cosmos, Neil deGrasse Tyson, science, and conservative denialism

Several posts at Salon lately about “Cosmos”, Neil deGrasse Tyson, science, and conservative denialism. 5 Most Important Lessons from “Cosmos” Which are: It’s OK to not know all the answers Climate change is happening, and it’s made-made. Evolution: How did … Continue reading

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