Category Archives: science

Why Scientific Posters Are Bad

When you do research, you sometimes get results[citation needed]. When you get results, you usually want to present them to your colleagues. As a scientist presenting to scientists, you have three common forms that that presentation can take: the talk, … Continue reading

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The Unexpected and the Unexplainable

Niels Bohr, the quantum theorist, once said “If quantum theory hasn’t shocked you, that just means you haven’t understood it yet”. People love this quote because it gets at how counterintuitive quantum mechanics can be. But it’s also discouraging, making … Continue reading

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The CCGS Amundsen is sitting idle in Hudson Bay

Earlier this month, with abnormally icy conditions in the Eastern Hudson Bay, the research icebreaker CCGS Amundsen was diverted from its scientific mission to help escort ships providing fuel to remote Inuit communities in Northern Quebec. Highly idiotic reports crowed about … Continue reading

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The Experimentalist’s Apprentice

There is a rule in science that says you should assume the simplest explanation that fits with what you observe. This is named Occam’s Razor after the medieval monk William of Ockham, who, it is generally agreed, didn’t come up … Continue reading

Posted in Apprenticeships, science | 6 Comments

Unfalsifiable thoughts on falsifiability

To be able to tell science from other kinds of study, Karl Popper developed the idea that for a theory to be scientific, there ought to be an experimental way to show that the theory is false based on predictions … Continue reading

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Canada Ebola Panic Blues

Although I am in general not a fan of the current government, I am still very surprised and highly disappointed in the Government of Canada’s ridiculous decision to stop issuing any visas to residents of, and travellers to, the countries … Continue reading

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What I learnt from marking labs for 6 straight hours while drinking caffeinated beverages the entire time

Abstract: As a TA for advanced undergraduate physics labs, I had to mark (“grade” in American) a lot of lab reports last quarter. Being a slow and poorly motivated marker, while wanting to give good feedback to my students, means … Continue reading

Posted in personal, science, whimsy | 1 Comment