Predatory publishing, vulnerable prey

On December 29, the International Conference on Recent Innovations in Engineering, Science and Technology (ICRIEST) is kicked off in Pune. It’s not a very well-known conference, but might as well have been for all the wrong reasons. On December 16 and 20, Navin Kabra, from Pune, submitted two papers to ICRIEST. Both were accepted and,Continue reading “Predatory publishing, vulnerable prey”

Solving mysteries, by William & Adso

The following is an excerpt from The Name of the Rose, Umberto Eco’s debut novel from 1980. The story is set in an Italian monastery in 1327, and is an intellectually heady murder mystery doused in symbolism and linguistic ambivalence. Two characters, William of Baskerville and Adso of Melk, are conversing about using deductive reasoning toContinue reading “Solving mysteries, by William & Adso”

Solving mysteries, by William & Adso

The following is an excerpt from The Name of the Rose, Umberto Eco’s debut novel from 1980. The story is set in an Italian monastery in 1327, and is an intellectually heady murder mystery doused in symbolism and linguistic ambivalence. Two characters, William of Baskerville and Adso of Melk, are conversing about using deductive reasoning toContinue reading “Solving mysteries, by William & Adso”

CNR Rao, a faceted gem

Inquisitions are sure to follow if you’ve won India’s highest civilian honor on the back of a little-known career. At the same time, if that career’s been forged on scientific research, then blame all that’s little-known on media apathy, flick away what fleeting specks of guilt persist, and congratulate the winner for years of “greatContinue reading “CNR Rao, a faceted gem”

‘No string theorists in non-elite institutions’

Shiraz Naval Minwalla, a professor of theoretical physics at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai, won the New Horizons in Physics Prize for 2013 on November 5. The prize – which recognizes ‘promising researchers’ and comes with a cash prize of $100,000 – is awarded by the Fundamental Physics Prize Foundation, set upContinue reading “‘No string theorists in non-elite institutions’”

'No string theorists in non-elite institutions'

Shiraz Naval Minwalla, a professor of theoretical physics at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai, won the New Horizons in Physics Prize for 2013 on November 5. The prize – which recognizes ‘promising researchers’ and comes with a cash prize of $100,000 – is awarded by the Fundamental Physics Prize Foundation, set upContinue reading “'No string theorists in non-elite institutions'”

Why do we need dark matter?

The first thing that goes wrong whenever a new discovery is reported, an old one is invalidated, or some vaguely important scientific result is announced has often to do with misrepresentation in the mainstream media. Right now, we’re in the aftermath of one such event: the October 30 announcement of results from a very sensitiveContinue reading “Why do we need dark matter?”

V for vendetta

The Hindu published an article on October 28, 2013, titled “He has arrears in engineering, PhD in physics“. The article spoke of a 19-something year old Rohit Gunturi, a final year student of engineering at Anna University but already a PhD holder in physics from UC Berkeley. Inspiring as this is, the story at firstContinue reading “V for vendetta”

The literature of metaphysics (or, ‘Losing your marbles’ )

For a while now, I’ve been intent on explaining stuff from particle physics. A lot of it is intuitive if you go beyond the mathematics and are ready to look at packets of energy as extremely small marbles. And then, you’ll find out some marbles have some charge, some the opposite charge, and some haveContinue reading “The literature of metaphysics (or, ‘Losing your marbles’ )”

The literature of metaphysics (or, 'Losing your marbles' )

For a while now, I’ve been intent on explaining stuff from particle physics. A lot of it is intuitive if you go beyond the mathematics and are ready to look at packets of energy as extremely small marbles. And then, you’ll find out some marbles have some charge, some the opposite charge, and some haveContinue reading “The literature of metaphysics (or, 'Losing your marbles' )”

A bounteous final frontier?

On January 22, 2013, an American company named Deep Space Industries (DSi) announced plans to launch two spacecrafts, in 2015 as a piggybacking payload named FireFly to prospect for near-Earth asteroids, and in 2016, to mine one and return a small sample to Earth. This is just the first phase; in the second phase startingContinue reading “A bounteous final frontier?”

‘No need to defend me.’

No need to defend me. Kudos to @monicabyrne13 and @hannahjwaters for having the courage to speak up. I was wrong. I am sorry. I am learning. — Bora Zivkovic (@BoraZ) October 16, 2013 While studying at the Asian College of Journalism, I and some 11 other students were told about the awesome man named BoraContinue reading “‘No need to defend me.’”