Saturday, January 23, 2010

Saturday Science

Let's start with a bit of perspective.

The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
night after night they display knowledge.
There is no speech or language
where their voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out into all the earth,
their words to the ends of the world.
In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun,
which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion,
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
It rises at one end of the heavens
and makes its circuit to the other;
nothing is hidden from its heat.
Psalm 19:1-6


Oh, the things mathematicians do for fun!
"If you live in a big city, this will sound all too familiar. Traffic is bad. You're late for work. And, of course, the parking garage is now full. So you're forced to parallel park on the street. You finally find a spot between two hulking SUVs, but it looks pretty tight. Do you go for it or move on?

Not to worry; geometry can save you. Run a simple calculation and — voila! — you'll know just what to do."
Curious? Check out the science of parallel parking.

Has distrust of science left you in a state of denial?

"What you don't know -- or do know, yet choose not to believe -- CAN hurt you. We'll talk with author Michael Specter about his book 'Denialism: How Irrational Thinking Hinders Scientific Progress, Harms the Planet, and Threatens Our Lives.' Specter argues that Americans have increasingly come to mistrust institutions, especially the institution of science. When it comes to a range of issues from childhood vaccines to genetically modified foods, he argues, people increasingly have come to maintain personal beliefs even in the face of solid scientific evidence. We'll find out more."

According to the author he has specifically excluded creationism/evolutionism, and global warming from his arguments and chosen to stick to topics that really effect our daily lives and decisions. You can listen to an interview with the author here .

Look what science has done for these high school kids -
and what these high school kids have done for science


Mugged by Ultrasound
Why so many abortion workers have turned pro-life.
"In general, abortion providers have censored their own emotional trauma out of concern to protect abortion rights. In 2008, however, abortionist Lisa Harris endeavored to begin “breaking the silence” in the pages of the journal Reproductive Health Matters. When she herself was 18 weeks pregnant, Dr. Harris performed a D&E abortion on an 18-week-old fetus. Harris felt her own child kick precisely at the moment that she ripped a fetal leg off with her forceps..."

Science itself, in the form of ultrasound, may well end up turning the tide on abortion.  Read the full article here.


Estelle said...

At last I get it about parallel parking - wish I had this info YEARS ago!

Laurie M. said...

Ha! That's funny Estelle! I'm glad you found that enlightening. I may love science, but, well, math is difficult for me. I parallel park by looking and going. And I'm fairly good at it - if I remember not to think too hard. Like most other things in life, you end up where you've fixed your gaze.

As for geometry - it was the only math class I ever took in which I made straight A's while sleeping through every class. Geometry always seemed like logic to me - while algebra seemed like mystery.