Category Archive: science

Jan 10 2012

Problem-solving, Einsteinian-style

95% definition, 5% solution. From


Einstein’s Secret to Amazing Problem Solving (and 10 Specific Ways You Can Use It)

Einstein's Secret to Jaw-Dropping Problem Solving

Einstein is quoted as having said that if he had one hour to save the world he would spend fifty-five minutes defining the problem and only five minutes finding the solution.

This quote does illustrate an important point: before jumping right into solving a problem, we should step back and invest time and effort to improve our understanding of it. Here are 10 strategies you can use to see problems from many different perspectives and master what is the most important step in problem solving: clearly defining the problem in the first place!


The Problem Is To Know What the Problem Is

The definition of the problem will be the focal point of all your problem-solving efforts. As such, it makes sense to devote as much attention and dedication to problem definition as possible. What usually happens is that as soon as we have a problem to work on we’re so eager to get to solutions that we neglect spending any time refining it.

What most of us don’t realize — and what supposedly Einstein might have been alluding to — is that the quality of the solutions we come up with will be in direct proportion to the quality of the description of the problem we’re trying to solve. Not only will your solutions be more abundant and of higher quality, but they’ll be achieved much, much more easily. Most importantly, you’ll have the confidence to be tackling a worthwhile problem.

Read the rest of this entry »

Jan 01 2012

The utility of mathematics

An interesting paper on why and how “pure” mathematics diverged from the natural sciences, and what it means.

Jan 01 2012

Bayes rules

A once-neglected statistical technique may help to explain how the mind works.

Jan 01 2012

How to read mathematics

What are the common mistakes people make in trying to read mathematics? How can these mistakes be corrected?

Jan 01 2012

13 things that don’t make sense

A mind-spinning article from the New Scientist.

If you travel out to the far edge of the solar system, into the frigid wastes beyond Pluto, you’ll see something strange. Suddenly, after passing through the Kuiper belt, a region of space teeming with icy rocks, there’s nothing.

Astronomers call this boundary the Kuiper cliff, because the density of space rocks drops off so steeply. What caused it? The only answer seems to be a 10th planet. We’re not talking about Quaoar or Sedna: this is a massive object, as big as Earth or Mars, that has swept the area clean of debris.

via 13 things that do not make sense

Jan 01 2012

Googling the Moon

Jan 01 2012

The best of Hubble

All the very best images from the Hubble Space Telescope. Well worth it.

Galactic wreckage in Stephan's Quintet

Dec 31 2011

Hubble Confirms New Moons of Pluto

Anxiously awaited follow-up observations with NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have confirmed the presence of two new moons around the distant planet Pluto.

Hubble Confirms New Moons of Pluto

via Hubble Confirms New Moons of Pluto

Dec 31 2011

Unintelligent Design

A monstrous discovery suggests that viruses, long regarded as lowly evolutionary latecomers, may have been the precursors of all life on Earth.

Dec 21 2011

Hubble spots complex carbon compounds, possibly organic, on Pluto’s surface

The Hubble Space Telescope has sniffed out evidence of complex carbon molecules, the building blocks of life in this corner of the cosmos, lying on the frozen surface of Pluto.

Dec 05 2011

NASA finds ‘merging tsunami’ doubled Japan destruction

A one in a million observation from radar satellites confirm a long-suspected hypothesis that tsunamis can merge together to form monster waves.

Nov 09 2011

Surfer breaks world record riding 90 foot wave

Garrett McNamara Sets Record: Surfer Rides 90 Foot Wave

Or does he?

Is this wave a world record?

Nov 03 2011

‘Invisible’ stars & amazingly bright pulsar

NASA Telescope’s Big Haul: ‘Invisible’ Stars & Amazingly Bright Pulsar

Oct 24 2011

Telescopes solve 2,000-year-old stellar mystery

Why there is that huge ring in the sky.


Oct 20 2011

Old American theory is ‘speared’

An ancient bone with a projectile point lodged within it appears to up-end – once and for all – a long-held idea of how the Americas were first populated.

Oct 20 2011

Global warming confirmed by independent study

The Earth’s surface really is getting warmer, a new analysis by a US scientific group set up in the wake of the “Climategate” affair has concluded.

Aug 24 2011

Researchers detail how a distant black hole devoured a star

NASA’s Swift satellite first alerted astronomers to intense and unusual high-energy flares from the new source in the constellation Draco…

Astronomers soon realized the source, known as Swift J1644+57, was the result of a truly extraordinary event — the awakening of a distant galaxy’s dormant black hole as it shredded and consumed a star. The galaxy is so far away, it took the light from the event approximately 3.9 billion years to reach Earth.

via NASA – Researchers Detail How A Distant Black Hole Devoured A Star

Jul 24 2011

Human-animal hybrids

Scientists have created more than 150 human-animal hybrid embryos in British laboratories.

via Embryos involving the genes of animals mixed with humans have been produced secretively for the past three years

Jun 12 2011

Human cell becomes living laser

Scientists have for the first time created laser light using living biological material: a single human cell and some jellyfish protein.

laser cellvia Human cell becomes living laser : Nature News

May 15 2011

Snake oil? Scientific evidence for popular diet supplements

Eh, not everything is good for you.

Page 3 of 712345...Last »