Time Is What You Measure With a Clock

Last year, Alan Alda posed a challenge to science communicators, to explain a flame in terms that an 11-year old could understand. this drew a lot of responses, and some very good winners. This year’s contest, though still called the “Flame Challenge,” asked for an answer to the question “What Is Time?” This is a […]

How to Teach Relativity to Your Four-Year Old

SCENE: The library at Chateau Steelypips. DADDY is typing on the computer, while THE PIP plays on the floor. Enter STEELYKID. STEELYKID: I’m already four years old. DADDY: Yes, yes you are. THE PIP: Thbbbbbbbpppt! STEELYKID: How old is The Pip? DADDY: Eleven months. Not quite one year. STEELYKID: When The Pip is four, how […]

Color diagram of the final beamsplitter in an atom interferometer.

The Towering Interferometer: “Testing General Relativity with Atom Interferometry”

In which we look at a slightly crazy-sounding proposal from my former boss, the experimental realization of which is getting close to completion. ———— I spent more or less the entire first day of DAMOP a couple of weeks ago going to precision measurement talks. Most of these were relatively sedate (at least by the […]

How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog in the New York Times

I was going to post something noting that the great WordPress transition will begin at 7pm tonight, and comments after that time will be lost like Roy Batty’s tears. However, I have much happier news: tomorrow’s Science Times (available on the Web already) will include a review of How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog! […]

How to Teach Relativity to Your Bay Area Dog

So, you find yourself living in the San Francisco Bay area, and you maybe have a dog who would like to know something about relativity, or you maybe want to someday have a dog who will want to know something about relativity, or you maybe want to know something more about relativity yourself, in case […]

How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog: A Review Is In

I’m trying not to be Neurotic Author Guy and obsessively check online reviews of How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog every fifteen minutes. I’ve actually been pretty successful at it, so successful that I didn’t notice the first posted review at Amazon until my parents mentioned it to me. It’s a really good one, […]

A Confusing Light OPERA: How Does a Loose Fiber Optic Cable Cause a Signal Delay?

So, the infamous OPERA result for neutrino speeds seems to be conclusively disproven, traced to a problem with a timing signal. Matt Strassler has a very nice explanation of the test that shows that the whole thing can almost certainly be traced to a timing error that cropped up in 2008. This problem is generally […]

Tell My Dog What She Got Wrong: How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog Errata

In comments to yesterday’s post, Andrew G asked: Speaking of writing, is there an errata list somewhere for “How to teach relativity to your dog“? No, but there probably should be. I believe there’s an error in one of Maxwell’s equations (an incorrect sign, though you should’ve seen the first typeset version…), but given the […]

Science Fantastic, Sales by SteelyKid

I had a signing yesterday at the Barnes & Noble in Vestal, NY, which drew a smallish crowd mostly of friends and family. SteelyKid came, of course, and while she spent most of her time bopping about other parts of the store, she came over to the signing area while I was signing books for […]

How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog Publicity Update

A couple of cool items in the promotion of How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog: — A little while back, I spoke to Alan Boyle, who writes the Cosmic Log blog for MSNBC, who posted a very nice story about the book last night. Mainstream media, baby! It also uses this very cool picture […]