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Scotty, The Naked Time, stardate 1704.3, Episode 7

Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

A book and a video

Posted by apgaylard on March 12, 2009

A Book.  The Open Laboratory 2008 is now in print, complete with a much sharper version of my post on anomolies within Kuhn’s philosophical framework.  I would like to thank the judges, for selecting the post, and Jennifer Rohn along with my good friend C P Leigh for their editorial efforts.

There’s a lot of very good and interesting writing in this slim volume.  It’s well worth the price.



A video.  Alom Shaha has released his “Why is science Important?” video via his website.  It’s really good.  A very thoughtful piece of work that should encourage young people, their parents and teachers to appreciate what a gift an exposure to science is.

If you know any teachers, please let them know about this stimulating resource.  My endorsement has nothing to do with me being (briefly) quoted at the end; or the use of a quotation from a better known science blogger.  Well, perhaps a little.


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Why is science important? – A collection of thoughts from leading scientists, public figures, …and you.

Posted by apgaylard on March 12, 2009

Why is science important? – A collection of thoughts from leading scientists, public figures, …and you.

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I’ve got an entry in The Open Laboratory: The Best Science Writing on Blogs 2008

Posted by apgaylard on January 4, 2009

Just a short bit of boasting.  I’ve had an entry selected for, “The Open Laboratory: The Best Science Writing on Blogs 2008”.  I immodestly submitted a three pieces (this, this and this) for consideration.  One has scraped in (note that it appears last on the list!):

Expect The Unexpected

It’s an exploration of the role of anomalies in science seen through the lens of Thomas Kuhn‘s much-misrepresented philosophy.   In retrospect I really wish that I’d called it “resistance is useful“!  It will need some tidying up (and sharpening up) before it goes into print; but still I’m happy to have been chosen.

My thanks go to all the authors of the entertaining ‘Memory of Water’ issue of Homeopathy, and every CAM advocate who has ever quoted Kuhn at me.  Thank you for prompting me to check things out for myself.

At the risk of sounding like Gwyneth Paltrow accepting an Oscar I’d really like to thank Ben Goldacre for getting me interested in the whole memory of water thing and the few kind readers of this blog who have helped me keep my motivation up.

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Hamsters rule the internet

Posted by apgaylard on December 30, 2008

bigstockphoto_hamster_in_the_glass_560949Here’s a bit of year-end nonsense:  one of the mysteries of my blog this year has been the post, “Good News For Hypercholesterolemic Hamsters“.  This has been, far and away, the most viewed post; accruing twice the number of views of its nearest rival. So, is it interest in the applicability of animal models to people that has driven this phenomenon? 

This post uses the Google Trends tool to explore the relative popularity of hamsters against: gerbils, guinea pigs, homeopathy, acupuncture, aromatherapy and reflexology, Ginseng, Black Cohosh, Ginkgo Biloba and Red Clover

So if you have found this post when all you really want is pictures of cute hamsters – welcome.  If you make it all the way to the end of this post, I’ll reward you with another! 

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My First Thirteen Months

Posted by apgaylard on October 5, 2008

What do I remember?

I’ve just come back from holiday and it’s dawned on me that I’ve been blogging for just over a year now; so I thought I’d indulge myself with a bit of a retrospective.

What got me going?  I had been lurking, and then commenting on Ben Goldacre’s Bad Science blog.  I had got drawn into the site via his weekly column in the Guardian.  I found that the use of basic scientific principles to expose nonsense in the media really got me thinking about science more generally again.  It also started to remind me how much of the physics I’d studied for my degree I had forgotten as my career had drifted into a narrow branch of engineering. 

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