The Summer of 2018 – By The Numbers

The summer of 2018 was both predictable and unexpected. As I began reflecting on this past summer, now that teaching is nearly upon me again, I came to find numbers that represented its many aspects. I want to share some of those numbers with you, and the meaning behind them. Let me begin by clarifying… Continue reading The Summer of 2018 – By The Numbers

Anti-Steve: The Week in Review (2/27)

The past week was a busy one: judging at the Dallas Regional Science and Engineering Fair (DRSEF), the Dallas “Icepocalypse” that shut down SMU for 1.5 days and led to a ridiculous amount of work getting done, meetings with my students about their “Grand Challenge Physics Problem,” SMU Research Day, ATLAS research, and hardware research… Continue reading Anti-Steve: The Week in Review (2/27)

Anti-Steve: The Week in Review (2/20)

I thought it might be nice to use this blog to . . . you know . . . actually blog. “Blog” is derived from “Web Log,” a journal or log kept by a person but broadcast publicly on the web. So in this week’s inaugural “Anti-Steve” [1], here are some things that happened this… Continue reading Anti-Steve: The Week in Review (2/20)

I am not a psychic

For the first day of class yesterday, I tried a new trick. We usually poll the class about issues that have a real science component, like vaccination or alternative medicine. It helps us to understand what they think they know. We added a new component yesterday, something we’ve talked about doing to a few years… Continue reading I am not a psychic

Sometimes, being a good teacher means drinking your own pee

I had the pleasure of guest lecturing a few weeks ago in the CFB/PHY 3333 course (despite being on teaching leave this semester – Profs. Scalise and Cotton are mighty persuasive). Here is the lecture audio, if you’re interested: Lecture Audio – Homeopathy (Spring, 2013) We’ve added a new feature to the part where we… Continue reading Sometimes, being a good teacher means drinking your own pee

The Parallel Universes of Science and Anti-Science

Finding Parallel Worlds In the series “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” a well-crafted transporter modification is capable of hurling the crew of the station into a “mirror universe.” Everyone who exists in the known universe also exists in the mirror universe, but there they are not the same people. Major Kira Nerys, a member of… Continue reading The Parallel Universes of Science and Anti-Science

Better to say “I don’t know”

In his collection of essays, Profiles of the Future, Arthur C. Clark famously penned three “laws of prediction.” The third of these is the most widely quoted, and simply states that “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” [1] While in Fry’s tonight, Jodi and I happened by some floor models of those Dyson… Continue reading Better to say “I don’t know”