Beneficial bird deaths? Clap for the man. No wait for weight. Disco astronomy.

This week’s Feedback column (that I write) in New Scientist magazine has four segments. Here are bits of each of them: Best interests at heart? — Feedback is fascinated by the final eight words in this statement: “Disadvantages include the competitive element associated with racing, which creates a strong incentive to kill birds where this is not in […]

Attenborough Can Make Anything More Dramatic

Sir David Attenborough’s sonorous tones add a measure of gravitas to any nature documentary. In this video from BBC One’s Graham Norton Show, Sir Attenborough lends the power of his voice to narrate a video of a retifistic tortoise’s unsuccessful advances toward a shoe. (HT to Jerry Coyne for sharing this via his blog) Bonus: […]

A Swiss sock boosted (and over-booted?) by Kiwi research

A product called The Swiss Protection Sock appears to extend the principle that was honored by the 2010 Ig Nobel Prize in public health. That prize was awarded to Lianne Parkin, Sheila Williams, and Patricia Priest of the University of Otago, New Zealand, for demonstrating that, on icy footpaths in wintertime, people slip and fall less often if […]