Ayurveda is not a science – but what does that mean?

This post has benefited immensely with inputs from Om Prasad. Calling something 'not a science' has become a pejorative, an insult. You say Ayurveda is not a science and suddenly, its loudest supporters demand to know what the problem is, what your problem is, and that you can go fuck yourself. But Ayurveda is not …

A science for the non-1%

David Michaels, an epidemiologist and a former US assistant secretary of labour for occupational safety and health under Barack Obama, writes in the Boston Review: [Product defence] operations have on their payrolls—or can bring in on a moment’s notice—toxicologists, epidemiologists, biostatisticians, risk assessors, and any other professionally trained, media-savvy experts deemed necessary (economists too, especially …

Sci-fi past the science

There's an interesting remark in the introductory portion of this article by Zeynep Tufekci (emphasis added): At its best, though, science fiction is a brilliant vehicle for exploring not the far future or the scientifically implausible but the interactions among science, technology and society. The what-if scenarios it poses can allow us to understand our own societies …

To understand #NotInMyName

The more vicious public debates we have, the more it will seem like a 'conversation' cordoned off to those masses for whom an awareness of social and political issues is only just budding.

Did Facebook cheat us?

No. There were some good arguments on this topic, swinging between aesthetic rebuttals to logical deconstructions. Here are four I liked: 1. Tal Yarkoni, Director of the Psychoinformatics Lab at University of Texas, Austin, writes on his blog, "... it's worth keeping in mind that there's nothing intrinsically evil about the idea that large corporations might be trying …