Category Archives: Science

Advancing research when mistakes could be catastrophic

Ever since our ancestors discovered how to make sharp stones more than two and a half million years ago, our mastery of tools has driven our success as a species. But as our tools become more powerful, we could be … Continue reading

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Newton: a scientific great, but not alone

“If it wasn’t for Newton’s discoveries we wouldn’t have the technology we have today,” our tour guide chided, directing his wisdom at someone who dared glance at their phone instead of examining the Newton family’s outdoor toilet.  I immediately bristled: of … Continue reading

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Looking at individual cells in the body, using heat and sound

I’m writing an article for the EC’s Horizon magazine on efforts to track stem cells once they are put inside a body to repair something like a damaged liver. It’s a treatment fairly far into the future, but all the … Continue reading

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Rosetta mission team pick a landing site

I’m loving the beautiful ESA images of the Rosetta spacecraft – especially this ‘selfie’ with comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko behind. You can almost imagine you are there, peeping out of a little window and seeing the solar panels unfurled below. It’s as … Continue reading

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George Green – the unschooled Nottingham mathematician championed by Einstein and Kelvin

There’s a new special exhibition opening tomorrow (12 September) at Lakeside Arts Centre, Nottingham University, presenting the life of George Green, a working man from Nottingham born in 1793 whose insights on electricity and magnetism were praised by Nobel prizewinners Lord … Continue reading

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Gaza – renewable energy for a just a durable peace

I found this interesting article in the Ecologist today setting out a vision for providing stable power supplies in Gaza, by solar power expert Keith Barnham, of Imperial College London. A major problem with the blockade of Gaza has been … Continue reading

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Quantifying Occam

So who – or what – is Occam, and why must it be quantified? Occam’s razor is an old maxim in science that rules you must choose the simplest theory to fit your data, and cut away the more complicated theories. It was first … Continue reading

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