Category Archives: Science

The unforeseeable plaintiff

Making sense of the world requires–nay, demands–that we find patterns in events. And, as part of modernity, we’ve become used to the clear-headed, formalised pattern-finding of law and science. There are ways to look for explanations, and things that ought properly to be discarded along the way. That’s why we have ‘legal method’ and ‘scientific […]

Scientists found guilty for ‘causing’ earthquake deaths

I was very interested to read that some scientists had been found guilty of manslaughter in relation to advice given about an earthquake: Six Italian scientists and a government official have been found guilty of multiple manslaughter for underestimating the risks of a killer earthquake in L’Aquila in 2009. They were sentenced to six years […]

Eye Candy du Jour: Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2012

Been a while since I did one of these, so I thought I might draw your attention to the Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2012 slideshow currently available on the BBC. Steven Christenson was ‘only’ a runner-up with his photo of hikers Lost In Yosemite national park (which gives you some idea of the standard […]

Science humour

Have you seen this cat? Does it generate a sense of uncertainty? This is the Saturday chit-chat post.

'A Plea in Law for Equal Marriage'

As many of you know, I won the 2012 Law Society of Scotland Essay Award for a piece entitled ‘A Plea in Law for Equal Marriage’. The question to which my paper was a response was this: An MSP would like to bring forward a member’s bill in the Scottish Parliament. She would like it […]

‘A Plea in Law for Equal Marriage’

As many of you know, I won the 2012 Law Society of Scotland Essay Award for a piece entitled ‘A Plea in Law for Equal Marriage’. The question to which my paper was a response was this: An MSP would like to bring forward a member’s bill in the Scottish Parliament. She would like it […]

Networked zealotry

A feature of the internet has been the growth of networked zealotry; where intensely held attitudes are expressed in overheated rhetoric and ad hominem abuse, not as solitary aberrations (though that also happens), but in self-reinforcing internet coteries. This has fed off, and possibly intensified, the bitter “culture wars” of the US; the intensification of […]

The Hindus of the Abrahamic World

Catholics and Orthodox are the Hindus of the Abrahamic world. The divine order is populated with many Personages–not merely the Trinity, but also Mary, Mother of God, Queen of Heaven, Star of the Sea, and a myriad of angels and saints. A supernatural prolixity that manifests in a certain approach to religious art and architecture. […]

The quintessential brains trust

… Marie Curie: the only person ever to win two Nobel prizes in two sciences. I am currently in examination hell, hence my diminished substantive contributions to the blog. I will be out of gaol on May 24 (last exam) and will then take a week or so off, but I’m afraid not much more than […]

Don’t climb that ladder

A real life study: Stephenson, G. R. (1967). ‘Cultural acquisition of a specific learned response among rhesus monkeys.’ In: Starek, D., Schneider, R., and Kuhn, H. J. (eds.), Progress in Primatology, Stuttgart: Fischer, pp. 279-288. [A gentle tip of the hat to Terje P] ———————————- Also: our viewing stats have gone fairly silly since Larvatus […]