Category Archives: physics

Papers of the day

From the Machine Learning and Computational Modeling Lab, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran: A. Ahmadian, K. Fouladi, B. N. Araabi, “Writer identification using a probabilistic model of handwritten digits and Approximate Bayesian Computation,” International … Continue reading

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Statistical Association, approximate Bayesian computation, Bayesian, civilization, computation, denial, education, engineering, evidence, free flow of labor, physics, science, science education, statistics | Leave a comment

Yes, I will be marching for Science in Boston

Like many, including Eli Rabett, I will be marching for Science in April, on Earth Day. My march will be part of the Boston march. Why? Because Science has been and is my life, and it always has been, and … Continue reading

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Meteorological Association, American Statistical Association, AMETSOC, astronomy, astrophysics, Carl Sagan, climate, Climate Lab Book, ecology, Eli Rabett, engineering, fluid dynamics, geophysics, hydrology, marine biology, meteorology, physics, population biology, Principles of Planetary Climate, reason, science, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, theoretical physics, thermodynamics, WHOI, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, XKCD | Leave a comment

“Oh no, not again” (from ATTP)

Response to a paper by Hermann Harde, from Ken Rice at … And Then There’s Physics. Dr Rice cites two other responses as well: One by Gavin Schmidt at RealClimate. One from 2011 by Gavin Cawley from the University of … Continue reading

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Meteorological Association, American Statistical Association, AMETSOC, atmosphere, being carbon dioxide, Carbon Cycle, carbon dioxide, chemistry, climate, climate disruption, climate education, Climate Lab Book, David Archer, diffusion, diffusion processes, fossil fuels, geophysics, Global Carbon Project, greenhouse gases, ignorance, physics, Principles of Planetary Climate, Ray Pierrehumbert, science, science education | Leave a comment

Why scientific measurements need to be adjusted

There is an excellent piece in Ars Technica about why scientific measurements need to be adjusted, and the implications of this for climate data. It is written by Scott K Johnson and is called “Thorough, not thoroughly fabricated: The truth … Continue reading

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Meteorological Association, American Statistical Association, AMETSOC, Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project, Canettes Blues Band, citizen data, climate data, data science, environment, evidence, geophysics, GISTEMP, HadCRUT4, mathematics education, meteorological models, obfuscating data, open data, physics, science, spatial statistics, Tamino, the right to know, the tragedy of our present civilization, Variable Variability | Leave a comment

`Moving forward on climate change and sustainability`

From WGBH, and hat tip to Environmental Justice TV, includes Dr Gavin Schmidt speaking, who I was especially interested in, and whose talk begins here: Interesting that Dr Schmidt has some gentle criticism of the PBS program NOVA. Whole talk … Continue reading

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Meteorological Association, AMETSOC, Anthropocene, bridge to nowhere, Buckminster Fuller, carbon dioxide, climate, climate change, climate data, climate disruption, Ecology Action, environment, Equiterre, fossil fuel divestment, Gavin Schmidt, geophysics, greenhouse gases, Hyper Anthropocene, investment in wind and solar energy, Kevin Anderson, moral leadership, NASA, physics, science, Spaceship Earth, sustainability, the tragedy of our present civilization, the value of financial assets, zero carbon | Leave a comment

Happy Newtonmas!

When knowledge conquered fear … And, what better way to celebrate than watching the National Geographic Cosmos episode, When knowledge conquered fear, hosted by the great Dr Neil deGrasse Tyson, Director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York City.

Posted in abstraction, astronomy, astrophysics, atheism, Bill Maher, Bill Nye, Boston Ethical Society, Buckminster Fuller, Carl Sagan, Cosmos, geophysics, Isaac Newton, mathematics, Neill deGrasse Tyson, physics, science, science education, the show | Leave a comment

Getting back to 350 ppm CO2: You can’t go home again

(Major update of this piece included below.) You can’t. It’ll cost much more than 23 times 40 times the Gross World Product to do it. And, in any case, you need to go to where you need to be to … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Anthropocene, atmosphere, bollocks, bridge to nowhere, Carbon Cycle, carbon dioxide, carbon dioxide capture, carbon dioxide sequestration, Carbon Worshipers, chemistry, clear air capture of carbon dioxide, climate, climate change, climate disruption, climate economics, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, David Archer, diffusion, diffusion processes, ecological services, ecology, economics, engineering, environment, environmental law, fossil fuels, geoengineering, global warming, greenhouse gases, Hyper Anthropocene, leaving fossil fuels in the ground, methane, Our Children's Trust, physics, rationality, reason, reasonableness, science, Spaceship Earth, the right to be and act stupid, Wally Broecker, zero carbon | 5 Comments

On the rise of the Trumpistas …

Just a couple of things to write about The Obvious. I have written a couple of longer thoughts as Comments, here and here, at … And Then There’s Physics. I reiterate that I don’t believe any voter was hoodwinked, that … Continue reading

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What’s going on in the ocean off the Northeast United States

Hint: Climate change has somethin’ to do with it. Schematic diagram illustrating the component parts of the AMOC and the 26◦ N observing system. Black arrows represent the Ekman transport (predominantly northward). Red arrows illustrate the circulation of warm waters … Continue reading

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Meteorological Association, AMETSOC, anomaly detection, Anthropocene, bifurcations, climate, climate change, climate disruption, coastal communities, critical slowing down, dynamical systems, ecology, environment, fluid dynamics, geophysics, global warming, Hyper Anthropocene, John Marshall, meteorology, oceanic eddies, oceanography, physics, regime shifts, science, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, sea level rise, the right to be and act stupid, the right to know, thermohaline circulation, WHOI, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution | Leave a comment

On failing to learn important lessons

As previously posted here, people along coasts and their governments, are failing to learn the lessons of both climate-induced sea level rise, and storms like Extratropical Sandy. Now, it’s startlingly clear how ignorant people are of these necessary lessons. The … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, American Meteorological Association, American Statistical Association, bollocks, case law, citizenship, civilization, climate change, climate disruption, climate economics, coastal communities, coasts, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, ecological services, economics, environment, environmental law, evidence, flooding, forecasting, global warming, greenhouse gases, hydrology, Hyper Anthropocene, John Englander, liberal climate deniers, living shorelines, meteorological models, meteorology, nor'easters, oceanography, physics, planning, politics, rationality, reason, reasonableness, Robert Young, science, science denier, sea level rise, seawalls, shorelines, sustainability, the right to be and act stupid, the tragedy of our present civilization, the value of financial assets, water, zero carbon | 1 Comment

“All models are wrong. Some models are useful.” — George Box

(Image courtesy of the Damien Garcia.) As a statistician and quant, I’ve thought hard about that oft-cited Boxism. I’m not sure I agree. It’s not that there is such a thing as a perfect model, or correct model, whatever in … Continue reading

Posted in abstraction, American Association for the Advancement of Science, astronomy, astrophysics, mathematics, model-free forecasting, numerics, perceptions, physical materialism, physics, rationality, reason, reasonableness, science, spatial statistics, splines, statistics, the right to know, theoretical physics, time series | Leave a comment

Our uncontrolled experiment with Earth as an Astrophysics problem set

Hat tip to And then there’s Physics …: On climate change and Astrobiology , by Adam Frank.

Posted in adaptation, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Anthropocene, astrophysics, bacteria, bollocks, Carl Sagan, civilization, climate, climate disruption, conservation, consumption, cynicism, Daniel Kahneman, David Archer, David Suzuki, denial, destructive economic development, Eaarth, ecology, environment, environmental law, Equiterre, fossil fuels, games of chance, geophysics, global warming, greenhouse gases, Hyper Anthropocene, James Hansen, leaving fossil fuels in the ground, mass extinctions, meteorology, NASA, Neill deGrasse Tyson, oceanography, Our Children's Trust, physics, Principles of Planetary Climate, quantitative ecology, random walks, Ray Pierrehumbert, risk, Robert Young, science, sustainability | Leave a comment

“Predicting annual temperatures a year ahead” (Dr Gavin Schmidt at REALCLIMATE)

Dr Schmidt is essentially betting that the trend, seen as a random variable, will regress towards the smooth mean. I have a post at Nate Silver’s 538 site on how we can predict annual surface temperature anomalies based on El … Continue reading

Posted in American Meteorological Association, American Statistical Association, AMETSOC, anomaly detection, Anthropocene, changepoint detection, climate change, climate data, climate disruption, climate education, climate models, ecology, environment, forecasting, geophysics, global warming, Hyper Anthropocene, meteorology, oceanography, physics, regression toward the mean, science, statistics, time series | Leave a comment

`Hermine Unique among Storms’

Originally posted on Climate Denial Crock of the Week:
Hermine still developing. Predictions are for it to hold in place off the East Coast for several days, due to a blocking pattern known as a “Rex Block”.  This and many…

Posted in American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Meteorological Association, anomaly detection, Anthropocene, bifurcations, changepoint detection, climate disruption, coastal communities, Dan Satterfield, ecology, environment, global warming, hurricanes, Hyper Anthropocene, meteorological models, meteorology, nor'easters, oceanic eddies, oceanography, physics, Principles of Planetary Climate, science, the right to be and act stupid, the tragedy of our present civilization, the value of financial assets, thermodynamics | Leave a comment

Carbon Sinks in Crisis — It Looks Like the World’s Largest Rainforest is Starting to Bleed Greenhouse Gasses

Originally posted on robertscribbler:
Back in 2005, and again in 2010, the vast Amazon rainforest, which has been aptly described as the world’s lungs, briefly lost its ability to take in atmospheric carbon dioxide. Its drought-stressed trees were not growing…

Posted in bifurcations, carbon dioxide, carbon dioxide sequestration, changepoint detection, climate, climate change, climate disruption, disruption, dynamical systems, environment, exponential growth, fossil fuels, geophysics, global warming, IPCC, Lévy flights, Lorenz, Minsky moment, model-free forecasting, physics, population biology, population dynamics, Principles of Planetary Climate, quantitative biology, quantitative ecology, random walk processes, Ray Pierrehumbert, reason, reasonableness, regime shifts, risk, Stefan Rahmstorf, the right to be and act stupid, the tragedy of our present civilization, UU Humanists | 2 Comments

Repaired R code for Markov spatial simulation of hurricane tracks from historical trajectories

I’m currently studying random walk and diffusion processes and their connections with random fields. I’m interested in this because at the core of dynamic linear models, Kalman filters, and state-space methods there is a random walk in a parameter space. … Continue reading

Posted in American Meteorological Association, American Statistical Association, AMETSOC, Arthur Charpentier, atmosphere, diffusion, diffusion processes, dynamic linear models, dynamical systems, environment, geophysics, hurricanes, Kalman filter, Kerry Emanuel, Lévy flights, Lorenz, Markov chain random fields, mathematics, mathematics education, maths, MCMC, mesh models, meteorological models, meteorology, model-free forecasting, Monte Carlo Statistical Methods, numerical analysis, numerical software, oceanography, open data, open source scientific software, physics, random walk processes, random walks, science, spatial statistics, state-space models, statistical dependence, statistics, stochastic algorithms, stochastics, time series | Leave a comment

“Full-depth Ocean Heat Content” reblog

This is a re-blog of an excellent post at And Then There’s Physics, titled Full-depth OHC or, expanded, “full-depth ocean heat content”. Since my holiday is now over, I thought I might briefly comment on a recent paper by Cheng … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropocene, climate, climate change, climate data, climate disruption, climate models, computation, differential equations, ensembles, environment, fluid dynamics, forecasting, geophysics, global warming, greenhouse gases, Hyper Anthropocene, Lorenz, Mathematics and Climate Research Network, model comparison, NOAA, oceanography, physics, science, statistics, theoretical physics, thermodynamics, time series | Leave a comment

“Stochastic Parameterization: Towards a new view of weather and climate models”

Judith Berner, Ulrich Achatz, Lauriane Batté, Lisa Bengtsson, Alvaro De La Cámara, Hannah M. Christensen, Matteo Colangeli, Danielle R. B. Coleman, Daan Crommelin, Stamen I. Dolaptchiev, Christian L.E. Franzke, Petra Friederichs, Peter Imkeller, Heikki Järvinen, Stephan Juricke, Vassili Kitsios, François … Continue reading

Posted in biology, climate models, complex systems, convergent cross-mapping, data science, dynamical systems, ecology, Ethan Deyle, Floris Takens, George Sughihara, Hao Ye, likelihood-free, Lorenz, mathematics, meteorological models, model-free forecasting, physics, population biology, population dynamics, quantitative biology, quantitative ecology, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, state-space models, statistical dependence, statistics, stochastic algorithms, stochastic search, stochastics, Takens embedding theorem, time series, Victor Brovkin | 4 Comments

“I need to wake up”

Now, more than ever. (The above was published in September 2015.)

Posted in adaptation, Antarctica, Anthropocene, Arctic, carbon dioxide, citizenship, civilization, climate, climate change, climate disruption, decentralized electric power generation, decentralized energy, denial, destructive economic development, disruption, distributed generation, ecology, Ecology Action, economics, environment, evidence, feed-in tariff, fossil fuel divestment, fossil fuels, gas pipeline leaks, geophysics, global warming, greenhouse gases, grid defection, Hyper Anthropocene, investment in wind and solar energy, James Hansen, leaving fossil fuels in the ground, meteorology, oceanography, physics, pipelines, politics, Principles of Planetary Climate, rationality, reasonableness, science, sea level rise, solar domination, solar energy, solar power, SolarPV.tv, Spaceship Earth, Stefan Rahmstorf, Tamino, temporal myopia, the energy of the people, the green century, the problem of evil, the right to be and act stupid, the right to know, the stack of lies, the tragedy of our present civilization, Unitarian Universalism, utility company death spiral, UU Humanists, WAIS, Wally Broecker, wind energy, wind power, zero carbon | 1 Comment

“Catching long tail distribution” (Ted Dunning)

One of the best presentations on what can happen if someone takes a naive approach to network data. It also highlights what is, to my mind, the greatly underappreciated t-distribution, which is typically only used in connection with frequentist Student … Continue reading

Posted in Cauchy distribution, complex systems, data science, Lévy flights, leptokurtic, mathematics, maths, networks, physics, population biology, population dynamics, regime shifts, sampling, statistics, Student t distribution, time series | Leave a comment

Absorption of long wave, or thermal radiation by CO2 at 667 per cm

From time to time, I engage with science deniers on the Web, typically in Comment sections, and primarily regarding aspects of climate science or physics. Some think this to be a waste of time, but, as I enjoy debating (have … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropocene, astrophysics, atmosphere, Bill Nye, carbon dioxide, chemistry, citizen science, climate, climate change, climate data, climate disruption, climate education, denial, evidence, geophysics, global warming, Hyper Anthropocene, ignorance, physics, rationality, reasonableness, science, science denier, science education, spectra, SuperCorrector1, Svante Arrhenius | Leave a comment

Mr Buffett bets the farm

From Dr James Hansen’s blog, of today. So, Mr. Buffett, I am heartened by the words in your last annual report, where you conclude that continued inaction on climate change “is foolhardy.” You wrote: “Call this Noah’s Law: If an … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, Anthropocene, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, BNEF, climate change, climate disruption, climate justice, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, environment, extended supply chains, games of chance, geophysics, global warming, greenhouse gases, hurricanes, Hyper Anthropocene, insurance, investing, James Hansen, liberal climate deniers, meteorology, oceanography, physics, rate of return regulation, rationality, reasonableness, science, statistical dependence, statistics, sustainability, the right to be and act stupid, the tragedy of our present civilization, the value of financial assets, Wally Broecker, Warren Buffett, zero carbon | Leave a comment

Boston, are you ready?

Yeah, how about warming up the seas a bit more by building pipelines, buying into more explosive methane (*), and encouraging fracked gas people to export? What could it hurt? There are many alternatives, most sketched here on this blog. … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, AMETSOC, Anthropocene, bollocks, Boston, bridge to nowhere, carbon dioxide, Carbon Worshipers, climate change, climate disruption, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, corruption, disingenuity, ecology, evidence, false advertising, floods, Florida, fossil fuel divestment, fossil fuels, fracking, geophysics, global warming, greenwashing, Hyper Anthropocene, MA, Massachusetts, methane, mitigation, natural gas, NOAA, nor'easters, physics, pipelines, prediction, rate of return regulation, rationality, reasonableness, regulatory capture, science, sea level rise, sustainability, the right to be and act stupid, the right to know, the tragedy of our present civilization, utility company death spiral | 1 Comment

This Earth Day: The Data

(Amendments on 25the April 2016.) Sorry, folks, it’s It’s not just El Niño. El Niño’s have gotten bigger over the years. (Click on image for a larger picture. Use your browser Back Button to return to blog.) (Click on image … Continue reading

Posted in American Petroleum Institute, Antarctica, Anthropocene, Arctic, Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project, BEST, Bill Nye, carbon dioxide, Carbon Worshipers, Chevron, citizenship, civilization, climate, climate change, climate disruption, climate education, climate justice, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, corruption, Dan Satterfield, ecology, El Nina, El Nino, ENSO, environment, evidence, Exxon, false advertising, fear uncertainty and doubt, fossil fuels, fracking, geophysics, glaciers, glaciology, global warming, greenhouse gases, Gulf Oil, Hyper Anthropocene, ice sheet dynamics, icesheets, ignorance, James Hansen, John Cook, La Nina, meteorology, NASA, NCAR, NOAA, oceanography, open data, organizational failures, physics, rationality, reasonableness, regulatory capture, science, science education, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, sea level rise, selfishness, Spaceship Earth, statistics, sustainability, Texaco, the problem of evil, the right to know, the tragedy of our present civilization, UU Humanists, WAIS, WHOI, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, zero carbon | Leave a comment

Remember 2012?

“Welcome to the rest of our lives …” Peter Sinclair speculates 2016 will be as bad and possibly worse than 2012.

Posted in adaptation, Anthropocene, Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project, Carbon Worshipers, climate, climate change, climate data, climate disruption, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, denial, environment, Exxon, FEMA, forecasting, forest fires, fossil fuels, fracking, games of chance, geophysics, George Sughihara, global warming, greenhouse gases, Hermann Scheer, Hyper Anthropocene, ignorance, liberal climate deniers, Mathematics and Climate Research Network, meteorology, physics, rationality, reasonableness, regime shifts, science, the right to be and act stupid, the right to know, the tragedy of our present civilization, the value of financial assets | Leave a comment

“Number density, not mixing ratio”, from Eli

From this post: There is a cute little number called Loschmidt, the number of molecules in a cubic meter of air at 1 atm and 0° C, 2.6867774(47) x 1025 molecules/m3 … Eli Rabett provides a neat way to see … Continue reading

Posted in astrophysics, Boltzmann, carbon dioxide, chemistry, climate, climate change, climate disruption, climate education, Eli Rabett, environment, evidence, geophysics, global warming, Loschmidt, meteorology, methane, physics, Principles of Planetary Climate, science, theoretical physics, thermodynamics | Leave a comment

“Things going fast”: Summary of a class on climate disruption taught by Professor Ricky Rood

Dr Ricky Rood is a professor at the University of Michigan, both a meteorologist and climate scientist, and a regular contributor to the climate and weather blogs at Weather Underground. In a post from April 6th (titled “No Way to … Continue reading

Posted in AMETSOC, Antarctica, Arctic, bridge to nowhere, carbon dioxide, Carbon Worshipers, climate, climate change, climate disruption, climate justice, corporate litigation on damage from fossil fuel emissions, environment, evidence, fossil fuels, geophysics, glaciers, glaciology, global warming, Hyper Anthropocene, James Hansen, liberal climate deniers, MA, marine biology, Massachusetts, meteorology, methane, MIchael Mann, natural gas, New England, physics, quantitative biology, quantitative ecology, rationality, reasonableness, Ricky Rood, science, sea level rise, sustainability, the right to be and act stupid, the right to know, the tragedy of our present civilization, zero carbon | 1 Comment

Of my favorite things …

(Clarifying language added 4 Apr 2016, 12:26 EDT.) I just watched an episode from the last season of Star Trek: The Next Generation entitled “Force of Nature.” As anyone who pays the least attention to this blog knows, opposing human … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropocene, bridge to somewhere, bucket list, Buckminster Fuller, Carl Sagan, climate, climate change, climate disruption, climate education, compassion, data science, Earle Wilson, ecology, Ecology Action, environment, evolution, geophysics, George Sughihara, global warming, Hyper Anthropocene, life purpose, mathematics, mathematics education, maths, numerical analysis, optimization, philosophy, physical materialism, physics, population biology, population dynamics, proud dad, quantitative biology, quantitative ecology, rationality, reasonableness, science, sociology, statistics, stochastic algorithms | 5 Comments

Bill Nye’s “Global Meltdown”: Climate grief in 5 steps

Postscript, 2nd April 2016 I’ve been asked offline whether I buy McPherson’s catastrophic warming scenario. I don’t, or at least I wouldn’t bet on it. Each of the components of Professor McPherson’s scenario are based upon solid science. But in … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, AMETSOC, Anthropocene, Arnold Schwarzennegger, Bill Nye, bridge to nowhere, Carbon Cycle, Carbon Worshipers, climate, climate change, climate disruption, denial, Eaarth, Earle Wilson, energy, environment, Florida, fossil fuels, geophysics, global warming, greenhouse gases, Hyper Anthropocene, physics, planning, rationality, reasonableness, science, selfishness, zero carbon | 4 Comments

It’s hotter than you think

Posted in adaptation, Anthropocene, atheism, Bill Nye, bridge to nowhere, carbon dioxide, Carbon Worshipers, civilization, climate change, climate disruption, environment, fossil fuels, geophysics, global warming, greenhouse gases, greenwashing, Guy McPherson, Hyper Anthropocene, ignorance, James Hansen, Kevin Anderson, meteorology, methane, mitigation, physics, rationality, reasonableness, science, sustainability, zero carbon | Leave a comment