Science

A recent Economist article describes a novel camera design with the promise to be far thinner than those that exist now, with some novel features: Not only do Dr Hajimiri’s cameras have no moving parts, they also lack lenses and mirrors—in other words, they have no conventional optics. That does away with the focal depth […]

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Gwynne Dyer makes some good points about glacier/snowpack, river flow, and geopolitical stability in this video, at 39 minutes 18 seconds:

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[U]ranium enrichment is the process that separates U-235 from U-238 in order to increase the proportion of the former isotope. Separation is measured by the kilogram separative work unit (SWU), representing the amount of uranium processed and the degree to which it is enriched. The gas centrifuge exploits the mass difference between these two isotopes […]

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I was surprised to see that I don’t seem to have ever put up a post about 3D printing, despite the variety of ways in which it’s interesting. The Economist has recently printed a few articles: 3D printers start to build factories of the future 3D printing transforms the economics of manufacturing A better way […]

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CPSA is keeping me busy, but there have been some interesting news stories in the last few days: ‘Mark my words’: Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion will proceed, Alberta premier vows Trump Advisers Wage Tug of War Before Decision on Climate Deal Financial firms lead shareholder rebellion against ExxonMobil climate change policies Trump pulling U.S. out […]

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An interesting genre! And you can own a gorgeous-looking replica for $100.

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Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain. These seemingly grim lines may be the most optimistic in modern literature: life feeds into life, change is constant, and the spring’s rain helps complete the cycle.

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A paper by Pearce, Brown, Nerlich, Koteyko (“Communicating climate change: conduits, content, and consensus“, 2015) contains some interesting ideas about effective communication about climate change. They cite one “best practice guide” which explains that: in order for climate science information to be fully absorbed by audiences, it must be actively communicated with appropriate language, metaphor, […]

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My family in Vermont sent me Bill McKibben’s 2005 book (updated in 2014) as a Christmas gift. In it, he recounts a meandering trek through the Lake Champlain region of the Adirondacks. It’s part nature writing, partly an account of the history of the region and the ways his neighbours are tying to earn a […]

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Sometimes paired with the fallacious argument that only people who use no fossil fuels can legitimately oppose fossil fuel development is the statement: “We won’t stop using fossil fuels tomorrow”. The logical error associated with using this statement to defend new fossil fuel infrastructure like fracking wells and bitumen sands pipelines (as well as new […]

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