If You Care About The Organic Revolution, Disavow Mike Adams

Revolutions are messy business, they require participation by a type of personality that is not...

Mitochondria And Antioxidants: A Tale Of Two Scientists

There is a little miracle of science happening in your body right now. As you read this, a minuscule...

Vegan Cheese - No Milk, Human DNA Instead

At a secret enclave in the San Francisco metropolitan area, synthetic biologists and DIYBio tinkerers...

Environmental Accountability: What America Gets Wrong, Canada And India Get Right

In America, radical environmental groups get something of a cultural free pass. It's understandable...

User picture.
picture for Luis Gonzalez-Mestrespicture for Tommaso Dorigopicture for Robert H Olleypicture for Josh Bloompicture for Norm Bensonpicture for Camilo Tabinas y Apita
Hank CampbellRSS Feed of this column.

I'm the founder of Science 2.0®.

A wise man once said Darwin had the greatest idea anyone ever had. Others may prefer Newton or Archimedes. Probably no one ever said the WWW or Science... Read More »

Our offices are in a building in sunny Folsom, California, a town made most famous when Johnny Cash had a concert at the nearby prison (*).   It's one of those full service places where they have the phones and the furniture and a kitchen in the middle.   It's obviously more expensive than a regular office lease but the riverboat gambler in me doesn't like long-term leases and I am convinced I could work from my house if my wife didn't say things like, "You can't work from the house."

On Thursday I was walking toward the kitchen to get my 11th coffee of the day when I passed two fellows talking in the hallway.   "No, the cost to run it is $3 million a day," says one.   "That's ..."

I kept walking.

"That's ..."
Tangential Science: it's not necessarily science, but it's still funny.

1.  Greek fire ain't what it used to be.  If you're a student of history, you know that Greek fire  (πῦρ θαλάσσιον) was popularized by the Byzantines, mostly against Arab navies.   We don't know what it consisted of because the recipe was lost to antiquity but it made enough of an impression that various other cultures copied it.   Naptha?   Saltpeter?  No one can be sure.

Greek fire was not an ingredient but instead an entire system.   It required special processing to make and was compressed so that the liquid shot out.  Thus it required expert handling as well. 

Do guys like Bernie Madoff do what they do because of greed ... or ego?    A Florida State professor says it's the latter.    It makes some sense because it takes a certain drive to become CEO of a large company and that takes a certain self-confidence.  

But is it more than just determination and grit and confidence?   Narcissism is the claim Wayne Hochwarter, the Jim Moran Professor of Management in the Florida State University College of Business, is trying to make.

As you might imagine, I get a lot of press releases.  As I have said here before, I like getting them because it's difficult for me to know all the good things happening out there, especially if an organization lacks the budget to hire an expensive PR firm.  A little proactive work helps get your message out.
There's this little company you may have heard of called GE.   Yeah, it's the one Edison started and I don't know where you come down in the whole Westinghouse/Edison fight but one of those guys screwed Tesla and one did not, so I am inclined to like Westinghouse more than Edison even though GE stock obviously did much better.

Hey, I can stick with my principles and still make some money.

But GE has earned my respect, not because of Jack Welch (though he earned my respect, mostly by making the stock a gold mine and despite being a part of that annoying Six Sigma crap that has been foisted off on MBAs since the 1990s) but because they made smart grids seem kind of cool.

What are smart grids?
Tangential Science: it's not necessarily science, but it's still funny.