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Tag Archives: History of Science

Two physics books try to make sense of quantum weirdness

quantum wave function

Quantum physics has earned a reputation as a realm of science beyond human comprehension. It describes a microworld of perplexing, paradoxical phenomena. Its equations imply a multiplicity of possible realities; an observation seems to select one of those possibilities for accessibility to human perception. The rest either disappear, remain hidden …

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50 years ago, a flu pandemic spurred vaccine research

1968 Hong Kong pandemic flu strain

Girding against a new strain Flu comes in many kinds, and the current vaccine … has little effect against a newcomer that has afflicted at least 400,000 persons in Hong Kong. The Asian city was the source of the 1957 epidemic in the United States. Fears that it may provide …

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‘Accessory to War’ probes the uneasy alliance between space science and the military

an illustration of a satellite orbiting the Earth

Accessory to WarNeil deGrasse Tyson and Avis LangW.W. Norton & Co., $30 Late-night comedians skewered Vice President Mike Pence in August when he announced preliminary plans for a new branch of the U.S. military dubbed the “Space Force.” Jimmy Kimmel likened the idea to a Michael Bay action movie, while …

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5 decades after his death, George Gamow’s contributions to science survive

George Gamow

Half a century ago, if you asked any teenage science fan to name the best popular science writers, you’d get two names: Isaac Asimov and George Gamow. Asimov was prominent not only for his nonfiction science books, but also for his science fiction. Gamow was known not only for writing …

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