Findings, a video: Something New

For a Monday-morning break from the weight of the world, check out a photo-music feature by English singer-songwriter Tom Fletcher, who serenades his wife Giovanna Falcone through her pregnancy to the birth of their baby, Buzz Michelangelo Fletcher.  The song is called

Facts and Opinions this Week

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South Africa’s solidarity unravelling

South Africa’s unlikely alliance, of forces drawn together by opposition to apartheid, was always expected to unravel, notes international affairs analyst Jonathan Manthorpe. That is now happening because, with public disgust at corruption and incompetence within the African National Congress (ANC) government

Mandela’s heritage tainted by President Zuma’s graft

JONATHAN MANTHORPEMarch 21, 2014 It was always foreseeable that after the death of Nelson Mandela the unlikely alliance of forces drawn together by opposition to apartheid in South Africa would unravel. Even before Mandela’s death early in December there was plenty of

Global contrapment, Rube Goldberg style

I had a crazy game called Mouse Trap when I was a kid. It involved an elaborate chain of mechanisms meant to trap a plastic mouse in a cage. When I read Chris Wood’s new Natural Security column I remembered that game

Our Rube Goldberg World

CHRIS WOOD: NATURAL SECURITYPublished March 21, 2014 Rube Goldberg is long dead, but the figurative machine to which he gave his name lives on. It’s that whimsical confection where a rolling marble tips a lever that sends a toy plane whizzing down

Do corporate funds trump publicly-funded science?

Researchers surprised even themselves when they set about measuring the impact of corporate versus public or government-funded research — and found that corporate funding had widespread benefits. They issued strong cautions: theirs is just one case study, more research is needed, oversight

Putin’s playbook, Taiwan protests, and China’s ambition

Beijing claims to own Taiwan and its 23 million people, writes international affairs analyst Jonathan Manthorpe. Amid the student occupation of Taiwan’s parliament, it takes little imagination to construct a chain of events in which the students’ action cascades to a point

Taiwan’s People Power protest is Beijing’s Crimea moment

JONATHAN MANTHORPEMarch 19, 2014 In the heat of the moment, the hundreds of students who have occupied Taiwan’s parliament in defence of their country’s independence are probably not wondering how their actions will be viewed in Western capitals. But perhaps they should.

Findings, Science. The Beginning of Everything we Know

Have scientists solved one of astronomy’s most elusive and enduring mysteries? Has an American team finally nailed the evidence to back the Big Bang ideas that scientists have discussed since Albert Einstein proposed them? Though it was suspected gravitational waves swept throughout