By justinkahn

Justin Kahn puts stuff on his blog, conceptofirony.blogspot.com

HOW I GOT OUT OF WRITING AN ESSAY ON H.G. WELL’S THE TIME MACHINE.

– FROM THE ARCHIVES – January 17, 2005 I received the syllabus for my Humanities course. A humanities course should not be required for my B.Sc degree in Physics. To add insult to injury, we are supposed to do an analysis of Well’s The Time Machine. We are to focus on the historical context when the topic is time travel? Who reads a book on a time machine for social insights? I would do anything to get out of this essay. At dinner, my friends complained about this assignment. I tell them a way out: I will build a time…

HOW I GOT OUT OF WRITING AN ESSAY ON H.G. WELL’S THE TIME MACHINE.

(Because it’s also the International Year of Astronomy, over the next few weeks, we are happy to present a few reprinted funny pieces that relate to this business of space – Enjoy!) January 17, 2005 I received the syllabus for my Humanities course. A humanities course should not be required for my B.Sc degree in Physics. To add insult to injury, we are supposed to do an analysis of Well’s The Time Machine. We are to focus on the historical context when the topic is time travel? Who reads a book on a time machine for social insights? I would…

WHAT’S NEW IN SCANTRON TECHNOLOGIES

The Scantron 8950 (A.K.A. “Lil’ Helper”). Attention, teachers! How many times have you arrived at the scantron machine with your stack of answer sheets and realized that you forgot to fill out the answer key? And where is your pencil? Hang on, because help is on the way. The 8900 may not help you remember to fill out your answer keys, but with its elegant pencil holder and built in pencil sharpener, you’ll be able to remedy that in no time. The Scantron 9000 (A.K.A. “The Compassionate One.”). Attention, teachers! How many times have you looked out at your tired,…

HOW I GOT OUT OF WRITING AN ESSAY ON H.G. WELL’S THE TIME MACHINE.

January 17, 2005 I received the syllabus for my Humanities course. A humanities course should not be required for my B.Sc degree in Physics. To add insult to injury, we are supposed to do an analysis of Well’s The Time Machine. We are to focus on the historical context when the topic is time travel? Who reads a book on a time machine for social insights? I would do anything to get out of this essay. At dinner, my friends complained about this assignment. I tell them a way out: I will build a time machine. They mocked me, but…

A REVIEW OF “MOLECULAR REGULATION OF 23A2 SKELETAL MYOBLAST DIFFERENTIATION AND APOPTOSIS” BY DR. MARGOT FREER

(In the interest of full disclosure, it is worth saying that Justin has known the author for several years. Further, the author has often provided Justin with home cooked meals and emotional support following his frequent, painful breakups and other various frequent personal tragedies. Finally, it is the present reviewer’s opinion that as he received an “A” in biology his superior scientific mind will not be influenced by his relationship with the author.) This is the greatest book ever. Now, I should say that I’m not a real big reader of scientific literature, but I could not put this thing…

AN INTRODUCTION TO OCKHAM’S RAZOR

– FROM THE ARCHIVE – “Pluralitas non est ponenda sine necessitate” Ockham’s razor, states that the simplest explanation tends to be the right one. While the definition is straightforward, application of Ockham’s Razor requires some development. In this paper we are going to investigate the question, “How is simplicity to be determined?” Some philosophers and scientists have suggested that simplicity is determined by a certain kind of elegance or in other cases a level of coherence combined with explanatory power. We suggest that such models are nonsense. We will start off by taking examples from the fields of Psychology and…

A DIALOG ON NUCLEAR WARFARE: CHARLES SHAW, HERMAN KAHN AND ME

– FROM THE ARCHIVE – The Participants Charles Shaw: A brand of wine, widely known as “two buck chucks” for its affordability (although in Ohio, one can’t seem to find it for no less than $3.33). An acquaintance of both participants in this dialog. Herman Kahn—Arguably the most celebrated and controversial nuclear strategist of his time. Often said what was on everyone’s mind, was Director of the Hudson “think tank” and wrote “On Thermonuclear War.” Also a rather large man. Me– Pacifist. Has the last name Kahn, but is probably unrelated to Herman Kahn and related to Justin Kahn only…

THE ETHICS OF CLONING: A DEBATE BETWEEN ME AND MY TWIN BROTHER

– FROM THE ARCHIVE – Participants Me: Against Cloning My Younger Twin Brother: For Cloning The Moderator Introduction MODERATOR: Tonight’s debate is on a topic meriting serious discussion: the ethics of cloning. Our participants are two outspoken proponents of opposing positions. Because it is a question for all of society, we have decided to include all and not simply the ‘academic elite.’ Justin, you are going to argue that Cloning should be abandoned in any civil society? ME: That’s correct. MODERATOR: And your brother is going to argue that cloning is a scientific option worth exploring? MY TWIN BROTHER: That’s…