Category Archives: Science

All things scientific.

On “Cultural Appropriation”: Sanity at Last!

As an undergraduate in the early 1980s, I studied German and Russian literature in college. Over my adult lifetime, however, I’ve felt increasingly out of place in the humanities. I’m not leftist. I don’t think capitalism is a bad word, … Continue reading

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Ebola: What Average People Can Do

The ebola epidemic has reached the United States and at least one country in Europe, although so far it does not look much like an epidemic in either place. (Four people confirmed to have fallen ill in the United States … Continue reading

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Dennis Tito (Remember Him?) Planning Trip to Mars in 2018?

According to, American investment manager Dennis Tito (who caused a huge kerfluffle at NASA in 2001 when he paid the Russian Federal Space Agency to fly him to the International Space Station as a tourist) has now announced that … Continue reading

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In Memory: Neil Alden Armstrong (1930-2012)

Over forty years ago, Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon. I watched; my mother got me up from bed rightly believing that this was something I should remember. Neil Armstrong was one of the quietest … Continue reading

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In Memory: Sally Kristen Ride (1951-2012)

Dr. Sally Ride — astronaut, scientist, and teacher — was one of my heroes, as she was for many women of my age/generation. Dr. Ride died yesterday, at 61 years of age, of pancreatic cancer. I posted the following on … Continue reading

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SpaceX Dragon Capsule Headed for ISS Saturday Morning!

About damn time! :-) In case this wasn’t abundantly clear, I have been SO WAITING for SpaceX to get this show on the road, and I’m SO HAPPY that they’re at this point. I do not blame them for taking … Continue reading

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The Challenge of “After-Birth Abortion”

Today’s UK Telegraph published an explosive article titled, “Killing babies no different from abortion, experts say”. When I saw the link on the Telegraph web site, I did a double take and then opened the article, certain that I would … Continue reading

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Thomas Haynesworth: “A Long Time Coming”

Today Thomas Haynesworth was granted a “write of actual innocence” by the Virginia Court of Appeals. Haynesworth had already been released from jail on parole because of evidence that he was innocent, but had been on the state sex offender’s … Continue reading

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The Eastern Sierras, Bodie, and Mono Lake

Yesterday a major urban fire broke out in Reno, Nevada, where I live. My husband Joe and I were already planning to visit his family over Thanksgiving, so we packed quickly, took a few things that we really didn’t want … Continue reading

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Not Such a Stretch to Reach the Stars

There’s a wonderful story in today’s New York Times about a symposium held as part of the DARPA 100-Year Starship Study. The meeting took place for a few days at the end of September and beginning of October, and consisted … Continue reading

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