Hell of a Week

Summarizing the last week’s events, I have the following comments: A small bomb is not anywhere near a “weapon of mass destruction.” When that term was coined, it referred to the atomic bomb. If the largest RAF “blockbuster” bombs of World War II weighed in at twelve thousand pounds and were not thusly termed, how… Continue reading Hell of a Week

Letters to the Editor

One of the only non-science dead-tree publications I read is The Economist. It is somewhat right-leaning, but is generally reasonable about most things. A couple of days ago, (I’m a few issues behind) I read an article (“Apocalypse perhaps a little later,” The Economist, March 30th – April 5th 2013 issue) claiming that “some scientists… Continue reading Letters to the Editor

Miscalculating Risk

As often happens at my place of employment, discussion devolves into a multivocal rant decrying the inability of most people to perceive relative risk. It is not just risk, either. Anything that could be considered economic in nature is absolutely a foreign language to even many mathematically sophisticated people. Unfortunately, the human brain is terrible… Continue reading Miscalculating Risk