20 OCT 2018 by ideonexus

 The Problem with American Politicians Being Lawyers

The job of the politician in America, whether at the local, state, or naA tional level, should be, in good part, to help educate and explain to people what world they are living in and what they need to do if they want to thrive within it. One problem we have today, though, is that so many American pobliticians don't seem to have a clue about the flat world. As venture capitalist John Doerr once remarked to me, "You talk to the leadership in China, andid they are all the engineers, and they g...
Folksonomies: politics science legalism
Folksonomies: politics science legalism
  1  notes
 
19 JAN 2016 by ideonexus

 Chomsky on the Failure of Postmodernism to Simplify

Since no one has succeeded in showing me what I'm missing, we're left with the second option: I'm just incapable of understanding. I'm certainly willing to grant that it may be true, though I'm afraid I'll have to remain suspicious, for what seem good reasons. There are lots of things I don't understand -- say, the latest debates over whether neutrinos have mass or the way that Fermat's last theorem was (apparently) proven recently. But from 50 years in this game, I have learned two things: (...
Folksonomies: postmodernism
Folksonomies: postmodernism
  1  notes
 
24 JAN 2015 by ideonexus

 Hawking's Equation

awking has written down an equation which looks rather like Planck's equation. Hawking's equation is S = kA, where S is the entropy of a black hole, A is the area of its surface, and k is a constant which I call Hawking's constant. Entropy means roughly the same thing as the heat capacity of an object. It is measured in units of calories per degree. A is measured in square centimeters. Hawking's equation says that entropy is really the same thing as area. The exchange rate between area and en...
Folksonomies: physics equation
Folksonomies: physics equation
  1  notes
 
01 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 Carl Sagan's Encounter With a Dolphin's Theory of Mind

I was swimming in a large indoor pool with Peter. When I threw the pool's rubber ball to Peter (as was natural for me to have done), he dove under the ball as it hit the water and batted it with his snout accurately into my hands. After a few throws and precision returns, Peter's returns became increasingly inaccurate – forcing me to swim first to one side of the pool and then to the other in order to retrieve the ball. Eventually, it became clear that Peter chose not to place the ball with...
  1  notes

The dolphin began to experiment with him during a game of catch.

03 JAN 2011 by ideonexus

 Death is Not a Law of Biology

It is one of the most remarkable things that in all of the biological sciences there is no clue as to the necessity of death. If you say we want to make perpetual motion, we have discovered enough laws as we studied physics to see that it is either absolutely impossible or else the laws are wrong. But there is nothing in biology yet found that indicates the inevitability of death. This suggests to me that it is not at all inevitable, and that it is only a matter of time before the biologists ...
Folksonomies: biology death
Folksonomies: biology death
 3  3  notes

There is no law of biology that says things have to die.

03 JAN 2011 by ideonexus

 Science Must Confront Religion

The remark which I read somewhere, that science is all right so long as it doesn't attack religion, was the clue that I needed to understand the problem. As long as it doesn't attack religion it need not be paid attention to and nobody has to learn anything. So it can be cut off from modern society except for its applications, and thus be isolated. And then we have this terrible struggle to try to explain things to people who have no reason to want to know. But if they want to defend their ow...
Folksonomies: science religion
Folksonomies: science religion
  1  notes

So long as it doesn't, it can be ignored--but Feynman might be wrong about this.