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- The author of Skulls in the Stars is a professor of physics, specializing in optical science, at UNC Charlotte. The blog covers topics in physics and optics, the history of science, classic pulp fantasy and horror fiction, and the surprising intersections between these areas.
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Category Archives: … the Hell?
So Donald Trump is the new president of the United States. Though he in fact lost the popular vote, getting fewer votes than Clinton, he won the electoral college. It was a game well-played, and that’s how the news media … Continue reading
Even if you don’t know John Wyndham‘s name, you are familiar with his writing. Wyndham (1903-1969) wrote a number of incredibly famous and influential science fiction novels, including two that have been adapted for screen several times: The Day of … Continue reading
A quiet week on the blog, as I’m traveling. In the meantime, I’ve been thinking again how Ted Cruz has such an unnatural demeanor that he is either the Zodiac Killer or an alien infiltrator, seeking to destroy our planet … Continue reading
It is rather unsettling to think that scientific careers are often made by simple luck. For example, eventual Nobel Prize winner Albert Michelson (1852-1931) only got an education thanks to the literal last-minute intervention of none other than the President … Continue reading
Been busy at work and struggling to finish new science posts for the blog. In the meantime, here’s some silliness that I did on twitter. So what does Christmas mean to you? Birth of the savior? A day to strive for … Continue reading
By now, you have all no doubt heard about 14-year-old Ahmed Mohamed, who brought a home-made “clock” to his Texas school to show to his engineering teacher and was arrested when he was unable to explain why it was not a bomb … Continue reading
My apologies that I continue to go on about Republican attacks on higher education, but it really has become clear now that this is a major goal of 2015 for the GOP: weaken and/or destroy public universities as much as possible. … Continue reading
Dear Senator McInnis, I recently read with some concern, first in The Daily Tarheel and then on Slate, about your proposed Senate bill 593, ironically titled “An act to improve the quality of instruction at the constituent 3 institutions of the University of North Carolina.” This … Continue reading
Scene: A table at Starbucks Cast: Man #1, a wealthy benefactor Man #2, an enlightened guy Man #1: Let me ask you a hypothetical question: given the choice, would you rather have world peace or a billion dollars? Man #2: Oh, … Continue reading
References in a scientific paper are supposed to answer questions, not raise them, but sometimes they inadvertently create a minor mystery for the reader. A few weeks back, I blogged about the curious phenomenon of subluminal vacuum beams of light, … Continue reading