Fly-By Blogging

By Sean Carroll | August 29, 2006 11:45 am

Things I would blog about, if I weren’t on blogging vacation.

  • A short piece I wrote for Seed about the arrow of time is now on the web. It’s basically a summary of the scenario that Jennie Chen and I are suggesting for spontaneous inflation. On a related note, Karmen at Chaotic Utopia has a series on complexity and time, starting here.
  • Cocktail Party Physics advertises a call for proposals from Feminist Press.

    Girls and Science: Call for Proposals

    The Feminist Press, in collaboration with The National Science Foundation, is exploring new ways to get girls and young women interested in science. While there are many library resources featuring biographies of women scientists that are suitable for school reports, these are rarely the books that girls seek out themselves to read for pleasure. What would a book, or series of books, about science that girls really want to read look like? That is the question we want to answer.

    I don’t know; seems to me, if we start encouraging girls to become scientists, pretty soon they’ll be replacing equations with hugs and instead of performing experiments we’ll just talk about our feelings or some such thing. That can’t be right.

  • Janna Levin, author of the uniquely compelling How the Universe Got Its Spots and the brand-new A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines, appeared on the Colbert Report! I can’t actually get the video to play, but maybe you can.
  • Chris Mooney’s The Republican War on Science is now out in paperback. So all you poor liberals who couldn’t afford the hardcover edition now have no excuse.
  • Speaking of books, Alex Vilenkin has come out with Many Worlds in One, about eternal inflation and the multiverse. Alex was the one who first realized that inflation could be eternal, and is a world-class cosmologist; whatever you may think of the issues, he’s worth listening to. (And don’t tell me that we cosmologists can’t have a little fun.)
  • And Michael Bérubé also has a book out, What’s Liberal About the Liberal Arts?. So many books. Don’t these people know they’re wasting valuable time that could be spent blogging?
  • George W. Bush has decided to close EPA regional libraries, to protect the public from information they don’t need.

    What has been termed, “positively Orwellian”, by PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, is indeed frightening. It seems that the self-appointed “Decider”, George W. Bush, has decided to “end public access to research materials” at EPA Regional libraries without Congressional consent. In an all out effort to impede research and public access, Bush has implemented a loosely covert operation to close down 26 technical libraries under the guise of a budgetary constraint move. Scientists are protesting, but at least 15 of the libraries will be closed by Sept. 30, 2006.

  • On the other hand, John Kerry draws support from unseemly quarters, at least according to Yousuf al-Qaradawi.

    Kerry, who ran against Bush, was supported by homosexuals and nudists. But it was Bush who won [the elections], because he is Christian, right-wing, tenacious, and unyielding. In other words, the religious overcame the perverted. So we cannot blame all Americans and Westerners.

    So we really shouldn’t complain about the President.

  • Weak lensing, uploaded to flickr by darkmatter. Amazing photos. Weak Lensing

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Cosmic Variance

Random samplings from a universe of ideas.

About Sean Carroll

Sean Carroll is a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Physics at the California Institute of Technology. His research interests include theoretical aspects of cosmology, field theory, and gravitation. His most recent book is The Particle at the End of the Universe, about the Large Hadron Collider and the search for the Higgs boson. Here are some of his favorite blog posts, home page, and email: carroll [at] .


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