Let me preface this by saying that I started writing this post a little while ago, so some of the content is a bit dated at this point. That said, over at the Duck, Steve Saideman has a post up that continues the ongoing discussion on political science, its utility, and its relationship with the broader public. Steve* also links to some research on the subject done by fellow Binghamton University PhD, Conor Dowling. You can check out either post for more details on the content/findings of the research. For now, I wanted to focus on a couple of points. Continue reading (Mis)Understanding Political Science and Some Other Stuff
I listen to several podcasts each work during my daily commute to and from the office. One podcast, the Skeptics Guide to the Universe (SGU), has several segments each week, with a few discussing scientific findings. My favorite is a game for the panel where three scientific research findings are offered and the panelists guess which one is false. That is, a finding is made up by the host; often, it is in the opposite direction of a recent study. The other two findings are "science;" a result that has been published in a recent journal. Two episodes ago (#330, 11/12/2011), Continue reading The Danger of Online Articles
Assuming that one is looking for them, it is fairly easy to find internet arguments that stem from comparisons among and between science fiction universes, and a great many of these arguments center on comparing governments within those universes. Which government is more democratic: Star Wars’ Galactic Republic or Star Trek’s United Federation? Who is more repressive: Firefly’s Alliance or Star Wars’ Galactic Empire? How do the military assets of the Stargate universe stack up against those found in all of the other sci-fi universes? Indeed, given that nerd culture is now nearly synonymous with pop culture, these conversations seem to be quite common, Continue reading Sci-Fi Poli Sci, Episode I: Regime Types Across Sci-Fi Universes
Thanks to Geoff McGovern for pointing us toward a fascinating essay in Wired. Chris Anderson posits that the accessibility of information has vaulted us into what he calls the Petrabyte Age, in which information is not a matter of simple three- and four-dimensional taxonomy and order but of dimensionally agnostic statistics. It calls for an entirely different approach, one that requires us to lose the tether of data as something that can be visualized in its totality. It forces us to view data mathematically first and establish a context for it later. Given how much data is readily available, Anderson Continue reading Did Data Kill Theory?
NY Times Article References New BU Program Two professors at Binghamton University, Dr. David Sloan Wilson of the Biology department and Dr. Leslie Heywood of the English department, are currently developing a joint Science and Humanitities program called the "New Humanities Initiative". This program will add a rubric to BU courses which expose students to "basic scientific tools like statistics and experimental design and to liberal arts staples like the importance of analyzing specific texts or documents closely, identifying their animating ideas and comparing them with the texts of other times or other immortal minds". The goal of the program Continue reading Bridging the Gap between the Hard Sciences and the Humanities
Given that I am sucker for field-related music and any nerd inspired music in general, the newest post at The Monkey Cage amuses me with a musical critique of what we do after the jump: