Monthly Archives: November 2012

Invisibility tech is advancing, but not seeing is believing

What do Casper the Friendly Ghost, Harry Potter and H.G Wells\’ Griffin all have in common? The answer, of course, is “the ability to become invisible”. And these three characters weren’t the first to have such an ability – they were predated by several millennia by a range of mythological characters from the ancient world, […] … learn more→

Doha is worthwhile, but real decisions are elsewhere

The irony of the world’s climate change negotiators meeting in Doha this week cannot be lost on anyone taking an interest in climate change. Qatar is hardly a model of the low carbon economy. With annual per capita carbon emissions of more than 50 tonnes, it has the highest footprint of any nation. The country’s […] … learn more→

Outsourcing memory: the internet has changed how we remember

When Nicholas Carr’s article “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” hit newsstands in the July/August 2008 edition of The Atlantic, the reaction was predictably vociferous. The essay itself – a 4,175 word editorial monolith of the kind The Atlantic does so well – was a thoughtful exploration of the fear that heavy reliance upon the internet […] … learn more→

Do chimpanzees and orangutans really have midlife crises?

Knowing that chimpanzees and orangutans have personalities, feel emotions and are “almost human” comes as no surprise to most people. However, linking the term “midlife crisis” to chimpanzees and orangutans seems to be somewhat shocking and controversial as we’ve seen from the flurry of interest produced by a paper published this week. The other great […] … learn more→

Who do you think you are?

Jiten was 13 years old when his mother told him that he had been conceived with donor sperm. The man Jiten had always thought was his father, and had lived with Jiten and his mother until he was five, was not his genetic father. He says: “I remember running downstairs to talk to my step-dad. […] … learn more→

Gracefully decline a job offer

It sounds too good to be true. One highly touted job seeker was hit with a perfect financial services storm: job offers from Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase and Blackrock — all at the same time. This was the situation facing one client of career coach Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio, a partner at SixFigureStart and former head […] … learn more→

China’s divisive role in the East Asia Forum

The recently concluded East Asia Forum (EAF) has highlighted the contentious role of a growing China in regional affairs. For an event that was intended primarily to lay the foundation for a huge Free Trade Agreement (FTA), the EAF has been at least as notable for a profound, perhaps fatal, rift in the Association of […] … learn more→

Ocean currents play a role in predicting extent of Arctic sea ice – Research

Each winter, wide swaths of the Arctic Ocean freeze to form sheets of sea ice that spread over millions of square miles. This ice acts as a massive sun visor for the Earth, reflecting solar radiation and shielding the planet from excessive warming. The Arctic ice cover reaches its peak each year in mid-March, before […] … learn more→

The post fieldwork blues

I have just returned from fieldwork in the wonderful, scary, full-on adventure that is Papua New Guinea, a small nation in the South Pacific with the overused but apt byline, ‘The Land of the Unexpected’. A 1.5 hour flight from my home town of Cairns, Australia transports me to this amazing country with over 800 […] … learn more→

Content discovery demystified

Scholarly publishing consultants Tracy Gardner and Simon Inger recently concluded a large-scale study of how researchers navigate the flood of digitized scholarly content. Renew Training, the British company they run, will sell you the complete data set for a mere £1000 (that\’s $1,592), or the same information in a deluxe Excel spreadsheet, outfitted with specially […] … learn more→