Archive for February, 2009

“Gemüse ziehen und forschen”

Das ist die Antwort von Marius Reiser auf die Frage, was seine Zukunftspläne seien, nachdem er seine Professur an der Uni Mainz aus Protest gegen die Bologna-Reform niedergelegt hat. “Il faut cultiver notre jardin” hat schon Voltaire gefordert. Mir scheint nicht, dass er damit das Gemüseziehen gemeint hat.


16/02/2009 at 09:46 Leave a comment

Geology Can Be Fun

Hilarious video explaining why creationists are completely wrong about the history of the earth. Not only funny but also educational.


11/02/2009 at 18:25 Leave a comment

Some Sad Scientists

in this documentary. (25min.) Five people living on top of a mountain in Armenia doing research on cosmic radiation in a huge, almost abandoned and run-down facility. Document of a collapsed Russian Empire and the ensuing sadness.


10/02/2009 at 17:46 Leave a comment

Korrupte Medizin

Dass die Kommerzialisierung der Wissenschaft und insbesondere der Medizin in den letzten zwanzig Jahren bedenkliche Konsequenzen gezeitigt hat, ist in der Wissenschaftsforschung ein offenes Geheimnis. So langsam stösst das Thema auch zu einem breiteren Publikum vor: siehe das Interview mit Hans Weiss zu seinem Buch “Korrupte Medizin” auf Telepolis.

04/02/2009 at 12:26 Leave a comment

Art as Instinct

Another recommendable Science Saturday over at Denis Dutton discusses his book “The Art Instinct: Beauty, Pleasure, and Human Evolution“. He argues that there are constant aspects through all cultures regarding the things we humans find enjoyable about art. He even provides cluster criteria that define art independent of culture:

1. direct pleasure
2. style (stylized)
3. individuality (“there is a mind behind the work”)
4. creativity and novelty
5. surrounding atmosphere and criticism
6. intellectual challenge (using the whole brain simultaneously)
7. institution (though not important)
8. representation
9. skill, virtuosity
10. special focus (special occasions)
11. emotional saturation
12. imaginative experience (“where music happens? in your brain”)

I enjoyed listening to this discussion (well, it’s more like an interview) because Dutton provides a rather relaxed and sophisticated rendition of arguments and themes around the “nature/nurture divide”. It also fits well with the Darwin-year, that seems to be everywhere.

02/02/2009 at 18:30 Leave a comment