Monthly Archives: August 2011

Significant Figures

Measurement and Uncertainty Smackdown. With America being ruled by the Innumerati of all political persuasions anything that helps simple quantitative reasoning is worthwhile.

The basics of this I learned in High School Chemistry (Thank you, Mr. Wheeler) and my first two years at Carleton. Of course, back then (1967-70),

….there is no reason that students in introductory courses couldn’t do the monte
carlo method.

was not quite so obvious.

Blast from the past

I was cleaning out a closet this afternoon and came across the center pages of the program for Minicon 12, which I attended back in 1977. At 2:30 PM, on Saturday, April 9, there was this event:

Debate: “Resolved: Science Fiction Should Get Out of the Classroom and Back into the Gutter Where It Belongs” with Lester del Rey and Ivor Rogers

I must have been there, but I do not remember anything about it. It is an old issue and not to be taken too seriously,

Firefox on Ubuntu

Generally I am quite happy with Ubuntu Linux, but there are some annoyances. One is that the official Ubuntu repositories are not keeping up with the major releases from Mozilla (why?). I was running Firefox 3.6.20 on this box using Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) while Mozilla is now at Firefox 6.0. Fortunately the fix is very simple:

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:mozillateam/firefox-stable
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install firefox

So I am now running 6.0. Since I have added the repository I should now be able to stay current without any special effort.