HIV Successes and Space Launch Failures


Here's what I've been covering at FiveThirtyEight this past week (and, coming up this week, I've got a piece in the works that gives me the chance to mention rinderpest!)  The U.K.’s New At-Home HIV Test Is Better Than Anything We Have In The U.S.In the U.K., checking your HIV status is now nearly as easy as taking a pregnancy test. BioSure UK has begun selling a $45 take-home HIV test that lets customers prick their fingers, smear the blood on a testing stick, and get their HIV res … [Read more...]

7QT: Avengers, Revengers, and Re-stagers


--- 1 --- Guess where I was last night?After the movie, a couple girls asked to take a picture with me and then said, "Are you a student at Georgetown, too?""Nope!" I said, "I'm an adult!"And this is what adults do:--- 2 --- In other fictional universe news, I tend to recommend Diane Duane's Young Wizard series fairly often on this blog (well, at least books 1-6 in the series), so I thought I should tip you all off that Duane is doing a special, half-price sale of the … [Read more...]

Jen Fulwiler and I discuss rationalization, forgiveness, and my new book!

gladstone arc

I got to talk to Jen Fulwiler, the author of Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It on her SiriusXM show today.  If you'd like to tune in, Jen's show repeats on the Catholic Channel on Thursday (today!) at 4p ET; Friday 12a and 6a (too early for me) and Saturday at 1p.Jen and I spent most of the time talking about our approaches to petitionary prayer (why tell God something He already knows?) and Confession.  Jen talks about how the Catholic ap … [Read more...]

Does Effective Altruism Dehumanize People You Give To?


I'm discussing Effective Altruism and (possibly!) defusing some concerns about this growing, evidence-based movement in a conversation with Matt Gerken at Philanthropy Daily.  I really appreciation Matt raising some common qualms people have about Effective Altruism (What does this mean for local causes? What about goods that are hard to measure) and having me over to his site to engage them.I've posted one of our exchanges below, and you can see the rest at Philanthropy D … [Read more...]

Here are the words my copyeditor was warned about

(Chris / Flickr)

Once my book, Arriving at Amen: Seven Catholic Prayers that Even I Can Offer, (out May 7th! Tell your friends) was written, there was a lot of editing to come.  At one point, my editor wrote up a style sheet -- basically a document warning the copyeditor about any deliberate deviations from normal spelling/grammar and as a heads-up for any particularly obscure words.I thought it might be fun to collect a few of the terms that appeared on my style sheet, along with, in the best spelling bee t … [Read more...]

Discussing my book (and ballroom dance and bridges) in Sydney!

sydney tot

While I was in Australia, I had the pleasure of speaking at a Theology on Tap in Sydney.  This was the first talk I've done specifically on my book, Arriving at Amen: Seven Catholic Prayers that Even I Can Offer (out next week!) and I had a great time talking about my approach to prayer and fielding questions from the 400 people in attendance.My talk, which includes me doing a cha-cha basic in order to explain how I learned to pray the rosary, is below.Sydney's Theology on Tap group a … [Read more...]

Running the numbers on smokers, migrants, cancer, and drones


This past week at FiveThirtyEight, I've been covering the grim calculus of migrant ships, the difficult data on drones, smoking laws, and cancer tests.  Read on below!  Migrants Trying To Cross The Mediterranean Are Leaving One Risk For Another When countries confront refugees that aren’t in mortal danger, they’ve found ways to avoid allowing migrants to land and file asylum pleas. In 2013, Australia set up new patrols to intercept boats of refugees arriving from Indonesia and to tow t … [Read more...]