Category Archives: Science

Robert Koch, Disease Detective

Koch’s Postulates: It seems simple enough today to be able to say that a disease will have a cause, usually an organism; that it will be possible to grow that organism in a laboratory; that the laboratory culture will then … Continue reading

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Caroline Herschel, star woman

  “However long we live, life is short, so I work. And however important man becomes, he is nothing compared to the stars. There are secrets, dear sister, and it is for us to reveal them.” ~ Caroline Herschel (In … Continue reading

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Flipping the bird, four centuries on

Four hundred years ago today, a man was asked to either defend his scientific ideas or surrender them. He was said to have sinned against the Bible, a book that had no single author and very little historical accuracy. His … Continue reading

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Today’s Google Doodle: Dimitri Mendeleev

In the first volume of Principles of Chemistry Mendeleev discussed only eight of the then known sixty-three elements. He finished with the halogens, including chlorine and iodine. When he began the second volume he found that he needed to organise … Continue reading

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Galileo:4, Kepler:Won

“Jupiter is much blamed by the poets on account of his irregular loves. Three maidens are especially mentioned as having been clandestinely courted by Jupiter with success. Io, daughter of the River, Inachus, Callisto of Lycaon, Europa of Agenor. Then … Continue reading

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Spider wasp vs. spider: Garden epic

Yesterday I went outside to the patio to be greeted by a very large spider apparently struck dead while doing yoga. Now, this is not a normal event even by my very strange and relaxed standards, but I can swear … Continue reading

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The man who never was – at Piltdown.

(The Piltdown Gang) From being dubbed the ‘Earliest Englishman’ to being used as a tool to mock women agitating for equal voting rights, the skull of Piltdown Man saw many uses. But despite the best efforts of Charles Dawson who … Continue reading

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The Elephant Clock

This page comes from an A.D 1315 treatise on fantastic devices invented by the author Badi al-Zaman al-Razzaz al‑Jazari (1136-1206). His elephant clock was especially intricate: every half hour, the bird on the dome whistled; the man below dropped a … Continue reading

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John Dalton, observer extraordinaire!

John Dalton, 6 September 1766 – 1844. As a man John Dalton may have been a little on the boring side with the rather odd hobby of keeping daily weather records from 1787 when he was 21, till his death … Continue reading

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Through a window, happily.

I now have a new addition to my room, next to the floor length window – a little desk. I have my laptop there, a jar of paper beads, sheets of paper, three pairs of scissors, a fine brush, some … Continue reading

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