Without our memories, we would be lost to ourselves, amnesiacs flailing around in a constant, unrelenting present. It is hard to imagine being able to hang on to your personal identity without a store of autobiographical memories. To attain the kind of consciousness we all enjoy, we probably rely on a capacity to make links […]

{ 1 comment }

It may not be easily accessible to non-Audible subscribes, but Stephen Fry’s 12-part series “Inside Your Mind” is thought-provoking, informative, and excellent. He does a great job as a science popularizer and communicator, sharing experimental research without jargon and in a consistently accessible and engaging way. So far, I have found the episode on memory […]


The sea presents no end of dangers to ships and mariners, and surely one of the most frightening and unavoidable are rogue waves at least twice the height of the significant waves around them. The first to be detected was the 1995 Draupner wave, recorded from a North Sea oil platform off the coast of […]


Emma Jackson has an interesting article on the mega-libertarian “Freedom Convoy” protests and what they reveal about coalition building: Whether we want to admit it or not, there’s a lot that the anti-mandate movement is getting right from an organizing and movement-building perspective. For starters, in stark contrast to the Left, the past few days […]


In what may be the rocket-launched science story of the decade, the James Webb Space Telescope launched from the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana early Christmas morning Toronto time with me and many other science nerds watching the feed with mingled excitement and fear. The process from here is remarkable both in terms […]


Ontario’s COVID-19 dashboard is showing a shocking effective reproduction number for the omicron variant: The figure is highly concerning both because it suggests higher transmissibility for omicron than for past variants and because, by extension, a larger fraction of the total population would need to be vaccinated to control its spread. What we each choose […]


Next week, the Toronto city council is considering a proposal to adopt a net zero target by 2040. I have written to my city councillor and the mayor supporting the idea as better than nothing, but also explaining why net zero promises risk prolonging rather than curtailing fossil fuel use: Councillor Mike Colle and Mayor […]


I have written before about The Economist‘s inconsistent positions on climate change and fossil fuels. When writing about science or climate change specifically — and in most of their leading editorials — they stress the potential severity of the crisis and the need to take action. In their broader coverage, however, they tend to prioritize […]


The Trudeau government has released the Speech From the Throne to open the 44th Parliament. There’s a section on climate action, but it goes on an on about “growing the economy” and doesn’t even mention fossil fuels, much less the need to abolish them. It’s not super encouraging that the speech is called “Building a […]


Vanier Park, Vancouver 1997 LIFEboat Flotilla