7QT: Terrifying Fish, Lightning-Quick Archers (and some cussin’)


Two housekeeping notes: you can still vote for me in the "Smartest Blog" category in the Sheenazing Awards, and my weekly radio show will be streaming tomorrow at 5pm and again on Sunday at 1pm, --- 1 --- Folks, this archery video (found via Deadspin) has made my day.  Based on nerdy examination of historical art of archers, Lars Anderson overhauled his shooting technique and, well, let me let Deadspin summarize, since I prefer only to swear in direct quotations: What if I told you that the … [Read more...]

When Discerning, Fewer Relationships are “Failed” Ones

(image from SceneSisters)

Ilana Yurkiewicz explained, as a doctor, how she has to make an active effort to avoid learning callousness from the occasional deceptions of her patients.  Meanwhile, in the Federalist, Teresa Mull is tackling a similar problem in modern dating.  She's worried about the danger of being emotionally overextended, and would like to see folks engage in fewer high-turnover, emotionally-intense assignations. The practice of bonding and staying close until one partner arbitrarily changes his or her mi … [Read more...]

Holy Fools Against the Mini-Maxers

"Matejko Stańczyk" by Jan Matejko - cyfrowe.mnw.art.pl. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

My friend Ilana Yurkiewicz is an excellent doctoring blogger, and I particularly appreciated one of her recent essays, "What's so healthy about skepticism?"  Her post about being deceived by a patient and deciding what lessons to learn from the encounter is excellent.  I'll blockquote a small bit here, but you should pop over and read the whole thing: I had been deceived before, both in and out of the hospital walls. But it never bothered me as much as did then. There was something about how he … [Read more...]

Using Abortion Debates to Explain Bayesian Statistics

(cc from Wikipedia)

I'm never one to pass up a chance to leverage people's interest in a hot-button social issue to talk about probability theory.  I'm over at Ethika Politika today, talking about how base-rate neglect can skew people's understanding of the significance of screening test (specifically, those for fetal abnormalities)A New Danger to Expecting Mothers: Statistical Illiteracy Abortion, the talking point goes, is a private matter between a woman and her doctor.  But, after a series of missteps by c … [Read more...]

I’m coming to the Bay Area and the Bayou, invite me to speak!

Have gavel, will travel.

I'll be travelling for work in the next few months, so, if you were hoping I would come to speak in your neighborhood without having to cover my travel costs, this is your lucky day... provided you live in New Orleans or the Bay Area.  I have conventions for work that will put me in:San Francisco: Jan 30th-Feb 2nd New Orleans: March 27-29If you live in the area (or have friends or family who do and might be interested), send me an email at leah.libresco@gmail.com to see if we can work … [Read more...]

MLK and Making Invisible Violence Visible [Radio Readings]

Tabernakelbildstock in Taisten. Christus am Ölberg (cc Wolfgang Sauber)

You'll be able to catch my weekly radio program, "Fights in Good Faith" streaming today at 5pm ET and tomorrow (Sun) at 1pm.  And the archived audio is already up on the show page!Every week, I put up a "Radio Readings" post, so you can track down the books, articles, songs, (and, this week, museums!) that I cite on the show.  So, without further ado, here's what I'm talking about this week.  Being Christ in the Civil Rights MarchesThis segment is prompted by a visit to the N … [Read more...]

7QT: Math Puns, Set Tricks, and Artificial Worlds

nice neighbors

Just a reminder, my new radio show ("Fights in Good Faith") began last week (and the first episode is now up for streaming).  Tune in live this week at 5p Saturday or 1p on Sunday.  I'll be talking about my visit to the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis. --- 1 --- It's hard to get more Leah-baity than a competition for math puns, so that link naturally gets first billing this week.  Here's my favorite: Heard this joke about the Banach-Tarski paradox. I was beside my … [Read more...]