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July 11, 2003

Let Sail

Several times in the past, I’ve gotten emails from Paul Ginsparg, demanding to know who “X” at UT Austin was, along with a link to a crackpot paper submitted by “X” to the archives. As if I were somehow responsible, not just for my fellow faculty, but for every last graduate student and postdoc at UT.

I suppose it’s only fair to ask, “Who the heck is Thomas Gold?”

Thanks to Sébastien Paquet for pointing out this little gem (by way of Dave Harris).

Dave Harris frets that the reporting on this in New Scientist is a black mark on science journalism. But, much as I respect Dave and others who try to make an honest job of it, my impression is that this is par for the course in science journalism. Most science reporters seem to check their journalistic scepticism at the door. This particular fellow was just extraordinarily unlucky, this time around …

P.S.: The New Scientist article mentions Crooke’s Radiometer. For those unfamiliar with the device, here’s an explanation of how it works.

Posted by distler at July 11, 2003 4:01 PM

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Re: Let Sail

Is this the same Thomas Gold who the “Gold universe” is named after? The idea of a Gold universe is that in a closed universe the arrow of time would reverse in the contraction phase, so that both the Big Bang and the Big Crunch would have similar amounts of entropy…see John Baez’s comments on this in his review of Huw Price’s book on the arrow-of-time problem:

This Week’s Finds in Mathematical Physics (Week 26)

Posted by: Jesse on July 12, 2003 4:14 PM | Permalink | Reply to this

Re: Let Sail

Ha! I was aware that Ginsparg had moved to Cornell but had failed to make the connection. Did you email him to ask?

Posted by: Seb on July 12, 2003 8:53 PM | Permalink | Reply to this

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