Wednesday, May 17, 2017

New laws to allow questioning school science

SciAm complains:
State and local legislatures in the United States are experimenting with new ways to target the topics taught in science classes, and it seems to be paying dividends. Florida’s legislature approved a bill on May 5 that would enable residents to challenge what educators teach students. And two other states have already approved non-binding legislation this year urging teachers to embrace ‘academic freedom’ and present the full spectrum of views on evolution and climate change. This would give educators license to treat evolution and intelligent design as equally valid theories, or to present climate change as scientifically contentious. ...

The Florida legislation, for example, does not try to change state or district education standards. Instead, it enables any tax-paying resident of a given county to file complaints about the curriculum of the schools in their district. A complaint would trigger a public hearing to determine if the material in question is “accurate, balanced, noninflammatory, current, free of pornography … and suited to students’ needs”, according to the legislation. ...

Already this year, Indiana and Alabama have both passed non-binding legislation urging teachers to embrace academic freedom.
All of our elite professors will be against these bills, and they know what science is good for students better than mere taxpayers.

But check out the current SciAm cover story:
Can Quantum Mechanics Save the Cosmic Multiverse?

A surprising connection between cosmology and quantum mechanics could unveil the secrets of space and time

By Yasunori Nomura

Many cosmologists now accept the extraordinary idea that what seems to be the entire universe may actually be only a tiny part of a much larger structure called the multiverse. In this picture, multiple universes exist, and the rules we once assumed were basic laws of nature take different forms in each; for example, the types and properties of elementary particles may differ from one universe to another.
Peter Woit writes:
I’ve seen some fairly bizarre stories about fundamental physics in Scientific American over the years, but this one sets a new standard for outrageous nonsense, ... At the time I wrote about this “I’m having trouble making sense of any of these papers” and quoted Lubos’s evaluation: “They’re on crack”.
Science is not what it used to be. We cannot trust our leading scientists to tell us the straight truth.


  1. See

    This is very good. They might be able to do 50 qubits, but certainly not 100 qubits.

    1. But they aren't really qubits, so what good will it do? The funny thing is that many of the algorithms run on a "quantum" computer can be out-computed with FPGAs.

      "Fujitsu has teamed up with the University of Toronto to concoct a new computing architecture which is thousands of times faster than a conventional machine, and offers benefits over and above a quantum computer in terms of swiftly solving real-world problems which require heavyweight analysis.

      The new architecture sticks with conventional semiconductor tech and is built on a ‘basic optimisation circuit’ that uses FPGAs, and it offers flexible circuit configurations, with these basic circuits able to be implemented in parallel at high densities."

    2. How do you know they aren't really qubits? The article says they are qubits.

  2. I can see Yahoo!, your blog, but shame, I cannot save my own post from my own (free) blog at WordPress.