Sunday Starlinks

January 5th, 2014

Let’s start with lists of some of the best and worst science of 2013:

Biggest scientific breakthroughs of 2013.  The astronomy-related ones were decent.

Top junk science of 2013.  Agree with many of these.  I’m a fan of cryptozoology, but come on with the unprofessional bigfoot DNA shenanigans and the mermaid “documentaries.”

The headline of the article is wrong, but the article itself, about quantum effects limiting our ability to measure the acceleration of the expansion of space locally, is interesting.   I should make this a homework question next time I teach cosmology.

1000 Mars One finalists chosen.  Not me — I didn’t apply.  How about you?  I like their list of qualifications.

On correlation and causation…  Funny and true!  I just hate it, however, when climate change deniers try to use a similar but fatally flawed argument to dismiss the effects on CO2 and temperature.  When there’s a known physical mechanism and a prediction of a correlation that is found at the right level, that’s actually evidence in favor of an effect, not meaningless.   Still — Bite me, Jenny McCarthy.  I’m organic!

Bill Nye to debate Ken Ham, Creation Museum founder.  Mixed feelings on this, as public debates are far from the best way to determine factual information and this can only help legitimize Ken Ham, as fellow creationists will see him as the winner no matter what happens.

More evidence against time travelers.   I thought this was amusing.

Who really created Wolverine?  Interesting story.

Favorite jokes of scientists.

Why TED is a recipe for civilizational disaster.  I don’t know that I’d go that far!  I do agree with this sentiment: “I submit that astrophysics run on the model of American Idol is a recipe for civilizational disaster.”




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