Archive for July, 2012

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What Happens When a True Climate Skeptic Does the Science Himself

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

Richard Muller should have known better, but he’s a physicist, and I know enough physicists to know that some don’t respect other disciplines as much as they should.  This is old news, but with a recent NYT op-ed, he’s laying it out much more clearly than last year: Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, […]

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News About Dragoncon Astronomy Workshop

Monday, July 30th, 2012

The price for con participants will be reduced from $195 to $95 for the two-day astronomy workshop. This will be a focused event reproducing core elements of the six-day Launchpad workshop we run in Wyoming, which is always a big hit and gets excellent reviews from participants.  Having just done another last week, I am […]

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Sunday Starlinks

Sunday, July 29th, 2012

Launchpad finished on Saturday, and all my friends (new and old) attending left to leave me alone.  There’s always a little post-workshop depression, because it’s like a week-long science fiction convention while it’s going on, and then back to work and reality. Not a lot of links due to the 70 hour work week running […]

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Launch Pad Workshop Update

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

I’m swamped running the astronomy workshop for writers this week, and the weather has been rainy, but otherwise things are running smoothly and I’ve been very happy with the group this year.  They’re great, eager, and ask fantastic questions.  I couldn’t ask for anything more…except a couple of nights of clear weather to show them […]

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Sunday Launchpad Starlinks

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

I spent the day shuttling folks between the Denver airport and Laramie.  I know a few pretty well, but most of them are new to me, and hopefully new friends for life.  We’ll see.  In any event, they seem eager, enthusiastic, and ready for the the Launchpad workshop experience.  Hope I am, too!  It’s a […]

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Missing a Slew of Semi-Recent Science Fiction Movies — Which are Best?

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

I love good science fiction movies, but there are so few that come by.  I like passable science fiction movies, and there are more of them, but I tend to be slow tracking them down.  The blockbusters that I do prioritize range from the really pretty good (Avatar, Inception) to the profoundly disappointing (Prometheus). Then […]

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Another Milestar: 2nd PhD Defense in a Week

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

We had it earlier today, and it went smoothly and successfully. I’ve now had two grad students under me finish their PhDs, and it’s great. Both did professional work and landed excellent post-doc positions. “The Complex Nature of Broad Absorption Line Quasars” Mike DiPompeo Wednesday, July 18th at 11 AM in the Prowse Room (PS […]

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Can You Figure Out What this Science Fiction Novel is Trying to Say?

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

This is passed on from a friend of a friend, who is a Spanish teacher using a science fiction novel (I don’t know which one) in her class, and had this question:  I’m working on a sci fi novel to use in class and there is a reference to (translated):  the reflection point of the […]

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Despicable Media Journalism Against Space Science

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

I’m looking for a link or a video, but not finding one.  Let me paraphrase if I can what I saw Erin Burnett just do on CNN about NASA’s upcoming landing of Curiosity on Mars. She accused NASA of playing up the drama of the Mars landing in an attempt to gain support in opposition […]

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Sunday Starlinks

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

Not at Comic-Con either?  Photos to live vicariously by… Diablo on Diablo III. Rocky Kolb on CERN and the faster than light neutrinos, in hindsight.  Basically, hey, here’s science at work, working. And here: the results about arsenic-based life are not confirmed.  Sometimes the new hot result turns out to be wrong, but when entire […]

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A Personal Milestar Today

Friday, July 13th, 2012

I started as a professor at the University of Wyoming in the fall of 2002, a decade ago.  Since then I’ve published a lot of papers and brought in a lot of grant money, as well as taught a lot of classes.  There’s still one thing I’ve never done before: mentored a PhD student to […]

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What Personnel Are Needed on a Spaceship Exploring Strange New Worlds?

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

I like to write stories set in outer space on space ships, and I think a lot about stupid things like what is the necessary crew size and their expertise.  There are some guides based on long duration seafaring, but those are somewhat imperfect in the space environment. So far, we haven’t had space missions […]

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