As sweet as any harmony …

As sweet as any harmony … January 23, 2013

• “Isn’t life great?” The final words, and final thoughts, of a scientist and “an amazing man.”

• A² + B² = C² … Here, I’ll show you.

• I suppose a new poll showing that “78 percent of Americans believe the earth’s temperatures are rising” is a positive sign. That’s up from  the same survey taken in 2009, so it’s an encouraging sign that climate denial can’t be sustainable.

But on the other hand, the results of the poll — and even the existence of the poll itself — show that even our own personal experience becomes “controversial” once it’s framed as a partisan political question. Yesterday’s weather has become a point of contention and dispute. And that dispute cannot be settled with a thermometer because thermometers are now regarded as politically biased.

“This object is an expanding cloud of gas rushing away from a dying star. So what’s with the huge backwards S-shape?”

• “Astonishingly, if given access to a small hoard of chocolate chips, the free rat would usually save at least one treat for the captive — which is a lot to expect of a rat.”

Giant squid.

Slinkies and Wile E. Coyote.

• The Discovery Institute’s theology and biblical interpretation are also done with a green screen instead of a real Bible.

Sunita Williams gives a video tour of her office — the International Space Station. The special effects in that video are amazing — it really looks like she can fly.

• “A solar powered coal-mining museum is a fantastic way to celebrate this national journey.”

• James McGrath looks at a “science” lesson for fundamentalist homeschoolers that is guaranteed to produce legions of future atheists.

• Ed Darrell shares “A slightly rude film with a powerful point” — as well as some helpful resource links for broader context — in response to the horrific ignorance and negligence of the anti-vaxxer movement.

• “13 must-see stargazing events in 2013

• “Top 10 skywatching events not to be missed this year” (via)

(Five items not shared between those two lists.)

• “The Top 10 Reasons Why We Know the Earth Is Round

CJR must-reads of 2012: Science.

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