Archive for the Uncategorized Category

A Brain Teaser from SWALEC

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on September 8, 2014 by telescoper

As I wend my way Brightonwards after a week in Wales, I thought I’d request your assistance in deciphering part of a letter I received from SWALEC, the company that supplies gas and electricity to my Cardiff residence.

If anyone out there can explain the logic that leads from a credit of £163.54 to an increase in my monthly payment – other than the obvious one that SWALEC are trying it on – I’d be most grateful!

Pallas’s Cat

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on August 29, 2014 by telescoper

Too busy for a proper post today as I’ve got a lot to do before going off for a spot of annual leave. I’m therefore resorting to a standard ploy in such situation, posting a video of a cat. The short clip below features no ordinary cat, however. It’s an example of Pallas’s Cat, Otocolobus manul, a wonderful – but sadly endangered – creature which lives wild in the steppes of Central Asia. Here’s a fine specimen captured in a still photograph:


Although it appears very stocky because of its long fur, it’s actually no bigger than an average domestic cat.

The clip is a valuable reminder to us all that even the coolest and most dignified animals on Earth  can be hilarious when placed in an unfamiliar situation. This one has clearly just spotted a camera outside its lair….



Posted in Uncategorized on August 22, 2014 by telescoper


As an “intellectual poseur” I couldn’t resist reblogging this piece …

Originally posted on The Dreamheron Chronicles:

Just this summer, Professor Amber Miller of Columbia University (appearing at the World Science Festival panel discussion on BICEP2), stated emphatically (and it seems, not required by the context of the discussion) that the cosmic blackbody is intact. Her taxpayer-funded high-tech research in the high frontier is riding on this assumption. (Watch the video from 1:07 to 1:09).

A video released last month by the learned society SPIE and filmed at NASA Goddard pointedly avers that the blackbody is fully intact, with 50 ppm accuracy.

And today this bit of public education from Professor Peter Coles of the University of Sussex (upon holding many consultations with mainstream colleagues at a conference on this very subject in Denmark) states:

The problem – the Achilles Heel of BICEP, so to speak – is that it operates at a single frequency, 150 GHz. That means that it is not possible for this experiment…

View original 120 more words

How Horses Communicate

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on August 5, 2014 by telescoper

Meanwhile, researchers from the School of Psychology at the University of Sussex have revealed how horses communicate:


Demolition at Didcot

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on July 27, 2014 by telescoper

As someone who has spent his fair share of time traveling backwards and forwards on the First Great Western railway line between Cardiff (or Swindon) and London, it seems appropriate to note that the environs of Didcot Parkway station (which lies on the main line) will look rather different next time I do that journey. In the early hours of this morning, three of the six enormous cooling towers came tumbling down:

I gather the other three are also scheduled for demolition, although I doubt I’ll be able to attend that event in person either!

The Expert

Posted in Uncategorized on July 25, 2014 by telescoper

Brilliant sketch about the difficulty of fitting into the corporate world when you actually know things about stuff:





Posted in Uncategorized on April 16, 2014 by telescoper

I’m taking a  short holiday over the Easter break and probably won’t be blogging until I get back, primarily because I won’t have an internet connection where I’m going. That’s a deliberate decision, by the way. So, as the saying goes, there will now follow a short intermission….




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