Looking for ghost particles in a frustrated world

In some of the many types of objects and events involving electrons, it is helpful to think that these particles are made up of three smaller particles, called spinons, holons and orbitons. Physicists call these supposedly imaginary particles quasiparticles. By assuming that they exist, we get to simplify our calculations of the electrons’ behaviour in … Read more

Homo medicatis

With Covishield in my body, I feel like there is a capillary tube erupting from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and its panoply of attendant bodies vis-à-vis India’s COVID-19 response, soaring across the length of India and plunging into my veins, somewhere in Bangalore. And with every tug away from the compulsions of … Read more

Bharat Biotech gets 1/10 for tweet

If I had been Bharat Biotech’s teacher and “Where is your data?” had been an examination question, Bharat Biotech would have received 1 out of 10 marks. The correct answer to where is your data can take one of two forms: either an update in the form of where the data is in the data-processing … Read more

Notes on mindful email use

Recently, Basecamp released an email service, called Hey, many of whose features essentially embody a technological approach to solving one of the biggest problems with email: its users. GMail is versatile, but most people seem to use it in annoying ways (based on the email traffic in my professional inbox). I’ve been using only my … Read more

On the lab-leak hypothesis

One problem with the debate over the novel coronavirus’s “lab leak” origin hypothesis is a problem I’m starting to see in quite a few other areas of pandemic-related analysis and discussion. It’s that no one will say why others are wrong, even as they insist others are, and go on about why they are right. … Read more

Broken clocks during the pandemic

Proponents of conspiracy theories during the pandemic, at least in India, appear to be like broken clocks: they are right by coincidence, without the right body of evidence to back their claims. Two of the most read articles published by The Wire Science in the last 15 months have been the fact-checks of Luc Montagnier’s … Read more