Sign up for news and updates!

Enter word seen below
Visually impaired? Click here to have an audio challenge played.  You will then need to enter the code that is spelled out.
Change image

Please leave this field empty

Login Form

JREF Swift Blog
Swift, named for Jonathan Swift, is the JREF's daily blog, featuring content from James Randi, the JREF staff, and other featured authors.

WOO IN REVIEW: CSI - One to Go PDF Print E-mail
Written by Alison Smith   


I have held off on berating CSI: Crime Scene Investigation for quite some time, mostly because it, at the very least, promotes science and the evidence obtained from scientific practices as the best way to solve crimes. Whether or not they were totally accurate in their views on science was inconsequential – the CSI writers went forth armed with fingerprintingcsiopentitle kits and computer displays that for some reason show an image of every single fingerprint in the entire database when matching a comparison, running the CPU so hard that the computer itself would, quite possibly, burst into flames, leading the CSIs to wonder if they had a case of arson on their hands and take fingerprints and feed them into a computer and... well, you see what I'm saying here. It's weird that every computer in CSI has not already been reduced to charred rubble.

And CSI has taken a few hard hits in the past couple of seasons. Sara Sidle, my least favorite character, did not die horribly at the hands of The Miniature Killer, who turned out to be incredibly lame. Gary Dourdan, who played Warrick Brown, was caught with a veritable pharmacy of illegal drugs leading to his character's untimely death. They introduced the character Riley Adams to re-up the annoyance gap that Sara Sidle's departure left. 

Obama's "New Energy" Crisis PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Wagg   

obamaforceSwift reader and Amaz!ng Adventure 2 traveller Chas. Hogue brings this item from Debra Duneier, President of Living Home By Debra to our attention. It seems President Obama has another "energy" crisis on his hands:

New President, New Energy

Feng Shui Recommendations for the White House in 2009

We have entered into a season in our history of much needed change. The year 2009 may be the time to consider changes that are obvious to us and those that are esoteric.  In the Western world our way of life is based on accumulating and qualifying data and then analyzing this information to find trends, norms and averages. These are generally studied as a series of unconnected phenomena. Feng Shui and energy practices, have been main stream (sic) in Eastern cultures for thousands of years. The Eastern philosophy is based on the perception that nature is an unending  and a continuous stream of movements that are connected to one another.

News Flash From Woo-Woo Land PDF Print E-mail
Written by James Randi   

smokenotAt you'll see the startling statement that 57 thousand people stopped smoking after seeing Uri on TV in Germany! Wow! And, I mean, wow! Because how they determined that figure - that alone - is just incredible! Did all those folks write in, or telephone, e-mail, or send ESP signals? And if they didn't wait a couple of months, how could they possibly know whether they'd really quit? Did they take up nail-biting, crying uncontrollably, stammering, making contributions to Nigerian scammers, or heavy face-twitching, to replace the nicotine?  Inquiring minds want to know...

UFOs Learn a New Trick: Ice Circles PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Wagg   

icecircleWe're all familiar and bored with crop circles now that they've been explained as being easily created by a couple of pieces of rope and a board. However, those who cling to the UFO theory of their generation have latched on to something new... water or ice circles. This phenomenon has been observed in cold waterways in the United States and elswhere, but one was recently spotted in the UK, home to the most famous crop circles.

The UFO crowd assumes the term "unexplained" to be synonymous with "unexplainable," so of course aliens must have made them. From the Times Online article:

The cause of the rare phenomenon is unclear, with very little scientific evidence available to explain the formation of the discs. UFO-enthusiasts claim that, like crop circles, the perfect discs are created by visiting aliens, but scientists believe the extreme cold weather combined with an unusual current is the more likely reason.

Some Minor Science News PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Wagg   

Today, we learn that IBM has a new product. It's no big deal... just an MRI that has 100 million times the resolution of the ones we use today. Wait... let me type that out completley... 100,000,000 times the resolution. That a 4 nanometer resolution, which is more than enough to see a single virus particle.

The IBM MRFM uses a magnetic sensor tip which picks up on the minute magnetic forces of hydrogen atoms in the sample, called a resonant slice. The slice sits beneath a tiny silicon cantilever which vibrates in the presence of minute magnetic fields. Vibrations are tracked by a laser interferometer, recording 3D details of whatever's at that location. Image courtesy of IBM.

<< Start < Prev 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 Next > End >>

Page 281 of 320