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Man-versus-machine: the case of chess

A fascinating piece on chess computers versus people by Gary Kasparov in The New York Review of Books. With the defeat of humans by compiuters – Kasparov claims that these days Grand Masters would be challenged by many $50 programs – chess is now a new game. Broader issues of strategy matter […]

Silly remarks on climate change by John Carroll

I sent this to The Age a few days ago but they neither published it nor responded to its submission.



Another retrieved post – thanks Christina.


Car speed & death

Again a retrieved post – thanks Christina.


Australia getting hotter & in the SE drier

“Data collected by the Bureau of Meteorology indicate that Australia’s annual mean temperature for 2009 was 0.90°C above the 1961-90 average, making it the nation’s second warmest year since high-quality records began in 1910. High temperatures were especially notable in the southeast during the second half of the year, with Australia, Victoria, […]

2010 the hottest year?

Another retrieved post – thanks Christina.


Google in China

Another hacked post recovered – it is a bit dated and was posted a couple of weeks ago. Thanks Christina.

Google was apparently subject to a cyber attack by people living in China – the inference was that these people were agents of the Chinese Government.

The attack was directed at Chinese human rights […]

Industry views on road user charges

Another retrieved post-hacking post. A letter published in AFR on January 16.


Consumerism & the global environment

Another retrieved post after the nasty hacking attack.


Unchained Goddess/Hemo the Magnificent

Another retrieved post from hacking attack:

I mentioned in an earlier post that the animated film Unchained Goddess unambiguously forecast anthropogenic climate change in 1958. I’d only seen a clip and couldn’t find the complete film in local video stores so bought a copy from Amazon. It is an outstanding, partly animated, […]


One of the posts lost in the recent hack attack concerned Lord Monkton’s visit to Australia. Conservatives around Australia (Albrechtsen and even Barnaby Joyce)* are seeking to distance themselves from this silly toff. I liked the following summary of the great Lord Monkton from DeSmogBlog. The mad Lord Monkton repeats the usual […]

Attack on

Posts from January 6-25 have vanished after a hacking attack last night. I am seeking to beef up security and would appreciate advice.

Update: Things are still not working quite right now. Posts disappear as do comments. It was a frantic morning as I sought to restore things – eventually a phone call did it. […]

Environmental movies

The extreme political right are showing their hatred for the movie (that I reviewed recently) Avatar presumably because of its pro-environmental and anti-military themes. It is hard for me to appreciate the viewpoint of those who see something positive in environmental destruction and in killing people but that seems to be where these kooks end […]

Global warming & the issue-attention cycle

The Pew Climate Centre have shown that over the last year or so a decreased proportion of US citizens believe climate change is a serious public policy issue and a reduced number believe there is solid evidence that anthropogenic warming is occurring. Climate change delusionists might be credited with inducing these changed opinions but the […]

Tiger Woods & Enron

I have admiration for Tiger Woods the sportsman and really couldn’t care less if his sexual drives lead him to have partners other than his wife. But something is lost in my admiration for the guy because of a stench of hypocrisy. Woods’ configured public image as the ‘perfect family guy’ turns out to be […]

Hot decades

It is the start of a new decade and the occasion to review a simple fact. The decade to 2010 was in terms of global mean surface temperatures the hottest in recorded history – that is, over about 160 years. It was 0.2 degrees C hotter than the 1990s which were, in turn, the previous […]