Does the future affect the present?

Well, my comment on Naked Short Selling has certainly sparked a bit of discussion (for readers on sci.waikato.ac.nz/physicsstop you’ll need to look at the sciblogs hosting of the blog, http://sciblogs.co.nz/physics-stop/ ).  There’s the reasonable question asked as to whether letting people trade in things they don’t yet possess (basically anticipating the future – letting the future, […]

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Going Naked

I’ve been reading about Naked Short Selling, following Germany’s decision this week to ban it. What the financial world gets up to is rather interesting, to say the least.  For those who don’t wish to read about it themselves, my summary is this:  Short-selling is where you borrow something, then sell it, buy it back […]

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Making sense of those numbers

A couple of weeks ago I had a cholesterol test.  (That involves taking a blood sample, and I was relieved that this time I didn’t faint.)  I collected my results from the doctor’s surgery earlier this week. The nurse handed me a piece of paper, with lots of numbers on, and provided me the reassuring comment […]

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Can you believe this guy?

I stumbled upon this snippet on Yahoo this morning. "Professor proves Germany will win World Cup".  Of course the reference is to the only World Cup that matters, the one in South Africa later this year, not the pretend one happening here in NZ next year. I can only think that something has been lost […]

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Mind games for physicists

Here’s a gem of a paper from Jonathan Tuminaro and Edward Redish. The authors have carried out a detailed analysis of the discussions a group of physics students had when solving a particular problem. They’ve worked hard (the researchers, as well as the students) – the first case study they chose was a conversation 45 […]

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How does a physicist think?

As part of my reading for the Postgraduate Certificate in Tertiary Teaching (henceforth known as the PGCert(TT) )  I’ve come across this article by Gire et al. on how physics students think.   The study looked at how closely the physics-thought-processes of undergraduate and graduate students aligned with the physics-thought-processes of practising physicists.    In other words, do students […]

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I hate maths…

I’ve spent most of the morning grappling with a bit of troublesome mathematics.  I can tell that I’ve had enough, because I’m starting to see greek letters tango with roman ones across the computer screen before raising themselves to inappropriate powers and differentiate themselves into oblivion, and graphs of noisy data that are beginning to […]

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