Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Time to promote Doctor Who

I have to confess that I enjoyed the latest season of Doctor Who. It gave me a wonderful sense of achievement. The Doctor himself has vindicated my life choices more thoroughly than I could ever have hoped. I once dreamed of being Doctor Who, but now he dreams of being me: a Professor at Cardiff University.

Monday, 10 July 2017

John Clarke

In these strange times, I offer you some comedy. Not my own, of course. No, we can do far better than that. I would like to tell you about Mr John Clarke.

John Clarke was a New Zealand-born comedian, who died in April. He died relatively young (68), and suddenly (he collapsed while out walking). The news sent me off to look up some of his material. Guess what? He was a genius.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

The Irresistible Allure of Controversy

On June 13 a paper appeared on the preprint arXiv that brought into question LIGO's first detection of gravitational waves. Six days later one of my LIGO colleagues wrote a blog post highlighting errors that debunk the claim. His response was circulated amongst the LIGO and Virgo collaborations, and discussed within their many fascinating email lists, and officially approved as a response. As such, it is professional, polite, and to the point. This post, on the other hand, has not been circulated to my LIGO colleagues, or discussed in any mailing lists, or sanctioned by anyone. So any residual politeness is entirely my own fault.