Fake News? Take a Razor to It.

If you like this type of art and commentary please consider supporting my Patreon. Today’s piece of art is both a philosophical and a scientific principle. Though not actually created by William of Occam (also spelled Ockham) it was made famous by the 14th century philosopher because he used it so …


Useful or Artful?

The AxiDraw from a recent quickies brought up a question that has been rolling around in my engineer/artist brain for a while. It is a stellar example in a long line of projects that are beautiful, mesmerizing to watch, and yet I would never buy.  See this egg bot, dry …

ArtFeaturedMathPhilosophyphysicsQuantum MechanicsScience

Is the LHC an expensive art installation?

There are reams of writing, hours of talks, and TV programs by scientists on the manifestation of beauty in physics and mathematics. Obviously, beauty is a great angle for science communication, but their appreciation for beauty has a pragmatic purpose. From Albert Einstein to Edward Frenkel; Werner Heisenberg to Frank …


Nature, Nuture, and Social Justice

Over the past week, several articles have come to my attention for various reasons that stress the “nature” part of “nature vs. nurture”. And as I read them, I noticed that the reaction they provoked wasn’t a scientific one necessarily, but a philosophical one. Maybe even a moral one. And …


Album of the (last) Week – Open Mike Eagle’s “Dark Comedy”

Hello there, Lab Rats. Apologies for the late post, but I’m back to let you in on one of Hip-Hops best kept secrets: Open Mike Eagle. As a member of the Hellfyre Club collective (who has an impressive roster including personal favorites Busdriver and Milo), Mike has found his own …


Maria Montessori: When Genius Devours Itself

There are some people who lack the splendid good sense of dying at the right time. Geniuses who flared with an early fire and then ground out their latter days in petty feuds and stifling orthodoxy. That line of demarcation between early brilliance and later brutality is always fascinating – …

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What Time Is It?

I’m fairly confident I can say that we’ve all had a moment in our lives when a cartoon swooped in and saved us. It seems unlikely to me that I’m alone in having an imaginary light bulb sprout above head as I watched some after school twenty-two minute adventure. The …

BiologyChemistryPhilosophyScienceScience & Nature

Stem Cells, Stressed Cells, Healing, and the Lure of Rejuvenation

A recent study in Nature, entitled “Stimulus-triggered fate conversion of somatic cells into pluripotency“, suggests that subjecting cells to dangerous but non-lethal conditions (such as a bath in acid, or a mechanical squeeze) can turn them into stem cells. Unsurprisingly, this publication set off a bit of a media blitz, …