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Understanding The Voynich Manuscript #4

Understanding The Voynich Manuscript #4 If not Latin, then what? Please see the links at...

Understanding the Voynich Manuscript #3

Understanding the Voynich Manuscript #3 Plants and the moon. For thousands of years, people...

Understanding the Voynich Manuscript #2

Understanding the Voynich Manuscript #2 An i for an i ? Not nymphs: women! There are...

Understanding The Voynich Manuscript #1

Understanding the Voynich Manuscript #1 Tom, Dick and Harry explain a statistical method. ...

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Patrick LockerbyRSS Feed of this column.

Retired engineer, 73 years young. Computer builder and programmer. Linguist specialising in language acquisition and computational linguistics. Interested in every human endeavour except the scrooge... Read More »

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New Guide on Climate Literacy

A guide is now available to help individuals of all ages understand how climate influences them -- and how they influence climate. A product of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program, it was compiled by an interagency group led by NOAA.

"This guide is a first step for people who want to know more about the essential principles of our climate system, how to better discern scientifically credible information about climate, and how to identify problems related to understanding climate and climate change."
Are we living in an age of stupidity?

From the dawn of written history we have evidence of the development of the scientific method as a way of thinking. I believe the method has its origins in legal process. Perhaps early thinkers saw some form of 'good sense' underlying some of human law and wondered if nature obeyed laws of some kind.

The development of rules for speech such as grammar, dialectic, rhetoric and logic was, I believe, a response to the desire for quality of discourse in the assemblies where laws were made and lawbreakers were tried.
This blog is not about music, unless it be the 'music of the spheres'.


It is a sad fact that, throughout recorded history, many books have been irretrievably lost. In many cases, had these books survived, they may have given some insight into the life and character of their authors. Such is the case with all but one of the books of the geometer Hipparchus.

If people think of ancient geometers at all, they usually think of Euclid or Pythagorus. If they think of ancient astronomers at all, they usually think of Plato or Ptolemy. Poor Hipparchus! What did he ever do to deserve such obscurity?

The climate change skeptic asks - 'Given that the climate changes over millenia due to powerful natural forces, how could humans possibly contribute any significant effect to climate change, given our brief existence in geological time?'

I shall try to answer that question with examples from engineering which show how short-term pulse events can significantly affect long-term cyclic events.

The Influence of Short-Term Events on Long-Term Events.
Random Noise

Random Noise

Mar 13 2009 | comment(s)

Tinfoil News A British government spokespersonality has today issued an official denial of the government's intention to ban the wearing of tinfoil hats. This was in response to rumours following the announcement of a new brain-scanning method. Samba Effect on Global Climate Change Reportage Today, biased imperialist capitalist distortions in the media affected the perceptions of millions of readers as to the realities of global climate change and the need for urgent action. Compare XinhuaNet with
Scientific Hedging

A favourite theme in disaster movies is the political figure who tries to keep the local population from being alerted to some impending catastrophe.  Usually, the political figure tries to impede the publication of findings by one or more scientists.  In real life, it is more commonly the scientists themselves who create a barrier that stands between them and non-scientists. That barrier, the 'hedge' is a linguistic device.