coronavirus particles
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Are the Covidiots Screwing Us All Over?

Image by Erika Varga from Pixabay  COVID sucks. Restrictions suck. But does it have to be this bad? Sure, the virus is quite contagious, and can make people very sick, but would it be different if it weren't for the covidiots? I'm inclined to think that it would be. There will always be people who choose to break… Continue reading Are the Covidiots Screwing Us All Over?

nurse administering intramuscular injection
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

COVID-19 and Vaccine Hesitancy

Ever since COVID-19 swept across the planet earlier this year, the race has been on to develop a vaccine. Now there are two vaccines that are just about ready to go, but there seems to be quite a bit of reluctance when it comes to the prospect of actually getting it. So let's talk about… Continue reading COVID-19 and Vaccine Hesitancy

Benford's law: graphic showing integers of different sizes
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Benford’s Law and the Weird & Wacky Ways Our World Works

What the heck is Benford's law and why should anyone care? I was oblivious until I recently saw an episode of the series Connected on Netflix on the topic, but it turns out, the distribution of numbers in our world is a lot less random than you might think. Physicist Frank Benford was actually the… Continue reading Benford’s Law and the Weird & Wacky Ways Our World Works

Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

The Use and Misuse of Jargon

Many fields have their own jargon, which Wikipedia describes as "specialized terminology associated with a particular field or area of activity" that often isn't well understand by people outside of that particular field. While jargon can help people within a field communicate precisely, that doesn't necessarily translate well outside of the field. It can be… Continue reading The Use and Misuse of Jargon

search engine logos
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

How Do You Search for Information?

This post is an only mildly coherent hodgepodge of things related to how we search for information. I like looking stuff up. I'm curious about the world, and I want to know more, so I spend a lot of time searching. Reading other people's blog posts often sends me over to Google or Wikipedia to… Continue reading How Do You Search for Information?

modified johari window of knowledge
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

The Importance of What We Don’t Know We Don’t Know

There's a lot of knowledge out there in the world. We've all accumulated some of it, whether that's by formal schooling, work, or life in general. There are several different ways in which we relate to the potential knowledge that's out there in the world, as shown in the modified Johari window above: what we… Continue reading The Importance of What We Don’t Know We Don’t Know

the word vote displayed across a blue and red background
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

What Political Polls Mean – And What They Don’t

With an election looming, lots of figures from politicals are getting tossed around all the time. But what do those figures actually mean, if anything? To understand that, it's important to look at how polling works. Sample The sample is the people that the pollers gather opinions from. The goal is to get a sample… Continue reading What Political Polls Mean – And What They Don’t

free against a sun background
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

The “Free” Things Online Are Never Actually Free

su This came to mind recently because of a comment I saw on someone's blog to do with a news site requiring a subscription to read article. With the explosion of the internet in recent years and the vast amount of content that's available, we've come to expect things to be free. Except none of… Continue reading The “Free” Things Online Are Never Actually Free

Influenza virus diagram showing surface proteins
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Why You Should Get the Flu Vaccine in 2020

The flu vaccine might seem insignificant with the COVID-19 pandemic raging on, but it's actually more important now then ever. Does the flu vaccine offer protection against COVID? No. Vaccines are very specific. Flu vaccines are made to trigger an antibody response in the body to particular surface proteins on the influenza virus capsule. The… Continue reading Why You Should Get the Flu Vaccine in 2020

The science corner: What exactly is the placebo effect?
Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

What Exactly Is the Placebo Effect?

We've probably all heard of the placebo effect, but what is it, and how does it work? For something that happens regularly, it's not all that well understood. A placebo is any substance that's not intended or expected to have any therapeutic effect. Ethically, it generally wouldn't be considered acceptable to give a patient a… Continue reading What Exactly Is the Placebo Effect?