Articles

The kilogram is getting a makeover

The way we define a kilogram (and pounds too) is basically a high-tech refinement of a medieval technology. That’s about to change as the most influential bar in Paris is shutting down.

A Stradivarius Recovered

A beautiful story on NPR from legal correspondent Nina Totenberg about her late father’s stolen Stradivarius violin.

Cheryl’s Birthday Problem and Information Filtering

I love seeing teasers about math and logic gain popular appeal! Here’s the math (specifically, logic) problem that the internet is talking about today: You can get the full problem nicely presented on either The Guardian or The New York Times websites. A number of other sites are talking about it today, too. Just Google “Cheryl …

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How much do you need to make in LA to afford the average apartment?

Answer: $33/hour, at least And a home? According to a new report from KPCC: The median home price in Los Angeles is $570,500, according to the real estate website, Trulia.com. But consider that the median income in Los Angeles is about half that: $49,497, according to census numbers from 2009-2013. So it’s no surprise that Los Angeles …

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Meet Zequals, a mental math tool

Can some simple rounding help us be more accurate and confident with mental math? The man behind this symbol proposes just that: And it turns out it’s fairly accurate: Basically, using some simplification of numbers we can do mental multiplication more accurately (generally). Confused by the squiggles and colors? Don’t be intimidated. Read more: Zequals: the new …

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What does the Equinox look like from space?

The Vernal Equinox. It’s not the longest day of the year. It’s not the shortest. It’s the…well…what is it? Check out this visual representation using satellite data: Then read a further explanation from NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day Blog: >> APOD: 2014 March 19 – Equinox on a Spinning Earth. Happy Spring Equinox!

NIMH to move away from DSM

Don’t understand the acronyms? This has to do with federal research of mental health. It raises questions about the ways mental disorders are diagnosed. But moreover, it challenges they way medical professionals think about mental disorders. Unlike our definitions of ischemic heart disease, lymphoma, or AIDS, the DSM diagnoses are based on a consensus about …

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