Category Archives: Communicating Science

Problems can be opportunities to teach and learn

On March 13, 2015

I moved house just recently. It’s a lovely location with views over hills and moors. More specifically, in the distance, we have a panorama that is largely Dartmoor. Geologically, as you are most likely aware, we are talking a solid granite base, which occasionally erupts into the rugged and beautiful raised tors. So, somewhere under […]

I am not a smart man

On November 17, 2014

“I’m a physicist”… “Wow, you must be clever!” This is an interaction most physicists would admit to having at some point. Physics is difficult: everyone knows this. We take pride in it. Ours is the most difficult subject, the most worthy; we are the scientific elite. We are confident about our standing in academia. But […]

The value of idealized models

On September 29, 2014

Every physicist has to know the joke about the dairy farmer. Seriously, if you don’t know it, you can’t call yourself a physicist. It really should be added to the IOP’s requirements for the accreditation of physics degrees. If you have such a degree, and none of your lecturers ever told you the joke, please […]

Ireland’s particle accelerators: Out of sight, out of mind

On September 26, 2014

I am the exception in my family: I’m a scientist. There have been many professions within my family but none in the sciences. Nevertheless, many of them are fascinated by science and it was my father’s enthrallment with the sciences that began my passion into the world of discovery. As a result, I am used […]

Perplexed by Pauli

On August 15, 2014

A rather pervasive meme claiming that nothing ever really touches anything else has been circulating on the internet for a number of years. I think, although I’m not entirely certain, that it may well have its origins in an explanation by a certain Michio Kaku. This type of explanation later formed the basis of a […]