woolymonkey: (keyboard)
It has long been theorized that the week prior to an exam is an extremely dangerous time for the relatives of college students.

An alarming piece of research with relevance to both my work and my family: grandmonkeys are advised to sit down and take a couple of statins before reading the full paper.

woolymonkey: (singe a la licorne)
Here's what spidermonkey is doing every day at college.

It's chemistry project time.  His is something to do with crown ethers.  I have no idea what those are but they seem to go in for weird reactions that neither he nor his teacher had predicted.  Apparently this is not a problem.  Chem A level is one of the good ones: kids actually get marks for asking questions and thinking about stuff.  
woolymonkey: (singe a la licorne)
Still not convinced the universe was created by the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

The standard source for journalists writing about the discovery of gravitational wave patterns in the early universe compares it to 'a pot of pasta water boiling over'.  Laurence Krauss, being interviewed on Radio 4, described the spirals as 'pasta shaped patterns'.

Noodly appendages at work!  It's the only possible explanation (apart from the even less likely hypothesis that some physicists have a cheeky sense of humour).


.
woolymonkey: (singe a la licorne)
Remember when Spider won the Medical Research Art competition? If not, click the link to see the artwork and artist as they both looked in 2011, and an explanation of what it shows.

Today, we are taking the artwork back to the Laboratory of Molecular Biology, who have finished moving into their snazzy new, chromosome-shaped building and now have a place to display it.  So I took some last photos of it here with him, both looking older, but only the art looks more battered.  That will improve when the LMB replace the original cardboard box with a see-through black perspex one, though I can only wish them luck trying to hold the polystyrene balls, fishing line, cocktail sticks, wire, Early Learning Centre poster paint, etc. together.  'Mixed media' with a vengeance.  I particularly like the balls that he sprayed with solvent because the instructions said not to so they'd get all eaten away and icky.


The artist with his work.  NB print by grannymonkey in the background - multigenerational art!  Note also T-shirt evolution from Metallica to Spinal Tap, though the 2011 Metallica T-shirt is still worn, and probably would have been again if he'd known there'd be photos.


woolymonkey: (singe a la licorne)
From Monkey Federation Academies' bulletin:
14:45-15:45 Science Talk – Dr Jenny Wiseman from the Goddard Centre NASA years 10,11 and sixth form, entitled “is there life on other plants?” at Coleridge in J6-1
woolymonkey: (wtf?)
1. From wikipedia, while looking for info about Spider's GCSE exam board, OCR, created by merging several qualification providers, including Midland Examining Group (MEG):

Subsequent physics syllabi released by the OCR included the now infamous (fictional) units the "Ocrawatt" and "Ocrajoule" due to overzealous find-and-replace on MEG's part (in previous and later syllabi, the units were correctly written as "Megawatt" and "Megajoule".)

2. from a student essay:

The reason people get a sense of spiritual wellbeing in Milton Keynes* is that the town 'contains so much Greenland'.

* If you still doubt the beneficial spiritual properties of MIlton Keynes you may need to read my previous post.
woolymonkey: (wtf?)
New York Times: "Japanese Operator says it will Scrap Four Reactors at Plant"

Deutsche Welle: "Tepco may be able to keep two reactors running"

Compare and contrast the underlying assumptions about newsworthiness and nuclear safety.

Mathematicians may prefer to calculate how many of the six reactors are how far up shit creek and express this as a percentage, or a probability, or something else beginning with P. Possibly a pie chart.

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