Humanity is in Trouble

Just about everyone nowadays realizes that humanity faces multiple crises, but a new article makes the point that even experts underestimate just how bad things are now and how precipitously our situation is likely to deteriorate. The short article is Underestimating the Challenges of Avoiding a Ghastly Future, by Bradshaw et al and it is … Read more

Mathematical Flaw In Caplan’s Exhortation To Have More Kids

I heard a radio interview this morning with Bryan Caplan (a professor of economics at George Mason University), who argues in his recent book Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids (which I have not read) that the average person ought to have more children. The book is apparently based on one of Caplan’s 2005 blog … Read more

The Probability of Precipitation: What Does it Mean? Part 2, A New Resource

A while back I posted on this topic, starting with my father-in-law’s quirky (but charming) interpretation of probabilities quoted in weather reports, and continuing to discuss the meaning of probability in the context of weather forecasts. I suggested that someone ought to check on the accuracy of such reports, and listed a few resources. There … Read more

Peering Into An Eagle’s Nest: Raptor Resource Project

I found out about this today, and have been watching the Decorah Eagle Cam here. It’s pleasant to hear baby birds chirping in the background while working, and checking in with them now and then. It’s not for the squeamish, though, as the parent eagle has been ripping at a carcass that its spouse brought … Read more

The Probability of Precipitation: What Does it Mean?

My father-in-law runs a fruit farm, and made an interesting observation one day about weather prediction: If the weather report says 40% chance of rain, it never rains. If it says 50%, then maybe it rains, maybe not. But if it says 70%, then it rains for sure. This may seem self-contradictory, but it raises … Read more