Monthly Archives: August 2012

Education\’s guide to eco-friendly improvements

Environmental sustainability is a topic on many minds these days. It seems like you see the words “green” and “eco-friendly” everywhere you turn. People are realizing that if action is not taken immediately our big-blue planet is undoubtedly going to suffer — It\’s sad. Luckily, everyone seems to be doing their part to make sure […] … learn more→

Climate Commission: global climate action gathers momentum

Ninety countries representing 90% of the global economy are committed to reducing their greenhouse emissions and are taking action to do so. This is one of the take-home messages from the Climate Commission’s report “The Critical Decade: International Action on Climate Change”, released today. The report is based on a comprehensive survey of what is […] … learn more→

Objects in the mirror may be closer than they appear

I suspect it’s annoying to be my friend if you are doing your PhD. While you think you are having a casual conversation with me over coffee and a muffin, I am writing a blog post about you in my head. Some of my friends at RMIT have started a thread on Twitter called #tabit […] … learn more→

Made to measure? Why university rankings are flawed

An unwritten law has emerged in both the sciences and social sciences – that it is better to measure than not to measure. Perhaps our affinity to measurement is attributable to Galileo who is purported to have said count what is countable, measure what is measurable and, what is not measurable, make measurable. In a […] … learn more→

Marital separations an alternative to divorce for poor couples

Married couples who undergo long-term separations appear to be those who can’t afford to divorce, a new nationwide study suggests. Researchers found that about 80 percent of all respondents who went through a marital separation ultimately divorced, most within three years. About 5 percent attempted to reconcile. But 15 percent of separations didn’t lead to […] … learn more→

New design tool nixes mouse; users create shapes with hands only

Researchers have developed a design tool that enables people to create three-dimensional objects with their bare hands by using a depth-sensing camera and advanced software algorithms to interpret hand movements and gestures. \”It allows people to express their ideas rapidly and quickly using hand motions alone,\” said Karthik Ramani, Purdue University\’s Donald W. Feddersen Professor […] … learn more→

Scholars, spies, and global studies

No one doubts that globalization is one of the most important trends of our day. Nor does anyone question that it affects what we study, how we teach, and whom we seek to reach. Beyond that, however, there is little consensus. As American universities expand their global footprint with branch campuses in Singapore, Abu Dhabi, […] … learn more→

How offshore wind turbines could be more efficient

As wind farms are increasingly sited offshore rather than on land, and installed at water depths of up to 40 metres, a Cambridge University engineer is urging the wind power industry to look again at the design of the heavy supporting towers and foundations used out at sea in order to improve the energy payback […] … learn more→

3 ways to hack your class with Google+

It is no secret that I am a Google+ fan. This is mainly because Google Hangouts is hands down my favorite multi-party video chat client. This past summer I integrated Google+ into the hybrid online course for which I was a teaching assistant. While I was teaching mostly online, Google+ could be a nice support […] … learn more→