If you've ever wanted to understand how a search engine like Google works, you may find this interview interesting. These three men are basically the heart of Google's search engine and algorithms:
According to Mark Pagel, the single most powerful tool evolution has given any species, ever, is the ability to openly share ideas and communicate thoughts:
The scientific method is one of the greatest achievements of humanity, but we still have people making health, medical, and environmental decisions based on superstition and/or denial of scientific evidence. Why do we battle progress? Why do we try to prevent the use of genetically modified food, or not vaccinate our children?
Michael Specter claims we are entitled to our opinions, but we are not entitled to our own facts:
Ever wondered what re-entry looks like from above? Well, wonder no more:
Computers do only what they're told. But we've passed the point where any one person can explain what exactly any computer is doing... the behaviors have become so fast and so rich that we are effectively witnessing the dawn of a new era of intelligence, one that we can only study, not fully comprehend:
Very interesting talk:
It appears most research findings in medicine, biology, psychology, physics, and any number of other fields may be downright wrong:
There is increasing concern that most current published research findings are false. The probability that a research claim is true may depend on study power and bias, the number of other studies on the same question, and, importantly, the ratio of true to no relationships among the relationships probed in each scientific field.
What does it mean if a genetic test reports 99% chance of a match? Not as much as the general public believes:
Genetic-testing experts say such additional evidence is key to ensuring a positive identification and they have no reason to doubt the conclusion in the bin Laden case. But they say probabilities such as 99% or 99.99%—frequently tossed around in other cases involving DNA testing—can be misstated or misleading.
I like doing logic puzzles. I especially like when I find a mistake the author or publisher missed (I found several in the last book I was working on... so many that I stopped working on it out of frustration).
Most people I know are inherently bad with logic. I've known this for years. What I didn't know is that this is true for most logic problems, except when applied to social situations:
Fusion as an energy source has been "just over the horizon" for about two decades now. Some believe it will never happen. But some amazing breakthroughs have happened recently and real fusion may be practical in the short term. Here's a talk by Dr. Robert Bussard, a visionary with striking results in the lab. He has passed, but his work might very well lay the groundwork for cheap, clean power: