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Naomi Klein: Why Science Is Telling All of Us to Revolt and Change Our Lives Before We Destroy the Planet | Alternet October 31, 2013

Posted by sandyclaus in Politics.
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Naomi Klein: Why Science Is Telling All of Us to Revolt and Change Our Lives Before We Destroy the Planet

Climate scientists are coming to some incendiary conclusions.

via Naomi Klein: Why Science Is Telling All of Us to Revolt and Change Our Lives Before We Destroy the Planet | Alternet.

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Economics students aim to tear up free-market syllabus | Business | The Guardian October 27, 2013

Posted by sandyclaus in Occupy, Politics.
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In an article for the New York Times in 2009, Krugman wrote: \”As I see it, the economics profession went astray because economists, as a group, mistook beauty, clad in impressive-looking mathematics, for truth.\”

via Economics students aim to tear up free-market syllabus | Business | The Guardian.

Interview with Frank Oppenheimer – CaltechOralHistories October 19, 2013

Posted by sandyclaus in Exploratorium.
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The younger brother of J. Robert Oppenheimer, Frank Friedman Oppenheimer was born in 1912 in New York City. After graduating as a bachelor of science in physics from Johns Hopkins in 1933, Oppenheimer traveled to Europe where he studied at Cambridges Cavendish Laboratory and Florences Istitudo di Arceti from 1933-35. He then entered the California Institute of Technology from where he received his doctoral degree in physics in 1939. Before joining his brother in Los Alamos in 1943, Oppenheimer held positions at Stanford, Berkeleys Radiation Laboratory and the Y-12 Plant in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Following the War, Oppenheimer returned to Berkeley but then moved to the University of Minnesota where he embarked on studies of cosmic radiation. His research ended abruptly in 1949 after he was required to give testimony to the House Committee on Un-American Activities regarding his communist activities as a graduate student at Caltech. Not until 1961 did he return to university life at the University of Colorado. There he developed a variety of innovative teaching techniques, many of which were later incorporated in his design of the Exploratorium in San Francisco where Oppenheimer served as director. He died in Sausalito, California, in 1985. Conducted at the Exploratorium, this interview focuses on Oppenheimers years at the California Institute of Technology. Oppenheimer describes his work on beta- and gamma-ray spectroscopy and reminisces about C. C. Lauritsen, his supervisor. He recollects the relationships he formed while working at Caltechs Kellogg Laboratory, including his memories of Willy Fowler, Richard and Ruth Tolman, Hsue-Shen Tsien, Robert Millikan, Henry Borsook, Thomas Hunt Morgan, Fritz Zwicky and Frank Malina. He also discusses his time at Cambridges Cavendish Laboratory and his recollections of Peter L. Kapitsa, John D. Cockcroft, Ernest T. S. Walton, George Gamow and Ernest Rutherford. In addition to a discussion of Oppenheimers communist activities in pre-war Pasadena, he recounts his memories of fascism while he was studying in Florence in 1935.

via Interview with Frank Oppenheimer – CaltechOralHistories.

Historiography Of Outer Space: An Overview | Bio-Space-Politics October 19, 2013

Posted by sandyclaus in Science Policy.
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An exciting and very critical insight into the literary field of Outer Space gives the historian Asif A. Siddiqui in his essay “American Space History: Legacies, Questions, And Opportunities for Future Research.” Siddiqi points out that in particular the literature until  the 1990 had developed in four categories: 1 Exploration conquest 2 Competition system competition Technology uncritical enthusiasm for technology and Astronauts monographs.

via Historiography Of Outer Space: An Overview | Bio-Space-Politics.

Tech Magazines Used to Expose Psychics, Astrologers, and Other Frauds October 15, 2013

Posted by sandyclaus in Science Education.
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If you were a psychic, astrologer, spiritualist or any other kind of charlatan in the 1920s, you had no greater enemy than the science and technology magazines of the era. Many publishers of the 1920s saw calling out bullshit peddlers as a natural part of their broader mission. And they did so in glorious fashion — by giving away the pseudo-supernatural secrets of countless frauds.

via Tech Magazines Used to Expose Psychics, Astrologers, and Other Frauds.

Existential Risks: Analyzing Human Extinction Scenarios October 7, 2013

Posted by sandyclaus in Drake Revisited.
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Bangs – Earth-originating intelligent life goes extinct in relatively sudden disaster resulting from either an accident or a deliberate act of destruction.Crunches – The potential of humankind to develop into posthumanity[7] is permanently thwarted although human life continues in some form.Shrieks – Some form of posthumanity is attained but it is an extremely narrow band of what is possible and desirable.Whimpers – A posthuman civilization arises but evolves in a direction that leads gradually but irrevocably to either the complete disappearance of the things we value or to a state where those things are realized to only a minuscule degree of what could have been achieved.

via Existential Risks: Analyzing Human Extinction Scenarios.