clappamungus: (Lil' Johnny)

Nighty night! Hope you all sleep well after watching...that.
clappamungus: (Default)
This mentions disturbing stuff. )
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
I really enjoyed being on this one. Partly because my screwups were a bit better covered, but mostly because our guest was awesome - Dr. Mick Vagg, a pain specialist who's smart as a tack, interesting, and who talked about RANGAS! And I might have mentioned Scrubs. Twice.

Direct link to the mp3 file, 50:02

Apart from Scrubs,we talked about using synthetic cannabinoids as analgesics in cancer patients, prehistoric hawk-sized insects, mosquitoes are bastards who are not defeated by water, the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and its effect on microbial communities, using fruit flies to study insulin resistance and human diabetes, and the genetic sequencing (however imperfectly done) on an unborn foetus without invasive procedures.
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
Night shift struck again, so my dulcet tones were not donated to this episode. My amateurish attempts will be there for al to hear in the next one. This one had Pen, Lucas, and the return of Jo Benhamu.

Direct link to the mp3 file; 1:02:14...and haven't listened to this one yet either...

But apparently it was damn good (they spoke for over a fucking hour, after all...) - smelly old people, giving paralysed rats some movement back through robotics, a genetic link to restless legs syndrome, Mars meteorites that DON'T show life (nice change from the usual astrobiological bullcrap), vision loss in astronauts, creepy people (again), the new (114th and 116th) elements, the Mediterranean diet and how it can apparently bolster mental and physical health, and a mathematical model that predicts a new level of AI.


And for something completely random and non-scientific: the first season trailer to one of the most intriguing shows ever made, Carnivàle.

Eva and I first saw this show a few years ago when it was being shown on channel 2, but for some reason we never saw the second season (THAT'S RIGHT I HAVEN'T SEEN IT SO IF ANY OF YOU BUGGERS SPOIL IT FOR ME I'LL EVISCERATE YOU). We both loved it, but promptly forgot it. And then, a couple of days ago we saw both seasons on sale for a steal - NABBED. And now I have to stop myself from watching them obsessively. Two episodes in and I'm remembering just how compelling it was. It's such a shame that they cancelled it after two seasons.
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
Yet another late profile of the last few SoT episodes, up 'til the end of May and at the start of June.

Under the cut )
clappamungus: (King Diamond)
In fact, as a hangover of my old Socialist days, I despise nationalism/parochialism.

But if anything were to turn me into a chest-beating proclaimer of Aussie awesome, it'd be this song:

Actually, this band in general.

Yes, I know. How untrve... ;)
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
This last SoT just passed, Ed and I interviewed someone rather than crap on about science news. It was a nice change, and it was very informative!

Direct link to mp3 file, around half an hour (can't remember and Ed didn't put up the time).

The interviewee was Dr. Rob Morrison, who's a bit of an Aussie science legend - he was one of the hosts of The Curiosity Show which introduced a whole generation of kids to science and, I think, was instrumental as a precursor to critical thinking for a lot of people. He's also the co-founder of Friends of Science in Medicine, a group which since its recent inception has been pushing hard to get "alternative medicine" courses out of Australian Universities, at least in their current incarnation, where they're being taught as viable alternatives along with orthodox medicince. We had a very interesting chat about these issues, and it's well worth a listen. I was worried it would become a polemic, but I thought, after the interview, that FSM are handling the issue very well.

(Oh my god. They have the same acronym as the Flying Spaghetti Monster. That is FREAKING BRILLIANT...)
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
Yeah, again, I suck at updating my Science on Top entries. So here are the last three:

clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
Another one I missed out on which looked awesome. I haven't listened to it yet, but I plan to.


Pen and Ed were joined by Dr. Maia Sauren, who recently completed a PhD looking at the effect of mobile phones on your braaaain.

They talked about James Cameron and his mad dash to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the saving of the Australian Synchrotron, Australian megafauna and its collapse, how some crazy kids flew a ginormous paper airplane, a new peanut intolerance test that might not give the potential sufferer anaphylaxis, quantam interference (not going into much detail here because I'm a bit flummoxed!), and the satisfaction one gets from telling a scorching lie.


And this is sort of, very tangentially, related to science...I'm going to pimp a band my mate Ben is a member of called High Tea, who play spacey sort of instrumental...well, shoegaze, I suppose you'd call it. They're actually strongly influenced by the cosmos and Carl Sagan, which somes across more in their studio stuff which you can listen to or download here on their Bandcamp page. As far as this sort of music goes, they're excellent, and far outshine their contemporaries in the local hipster scene who have the chops but not the delivery.

I saw them perform at a local pub on Friday night, and they utterly killed.

Ben's the long-haired stoner looking dude with the guitar. The drummer was in a previous band of his called Baseball on vocals and violin (yes, I wrote that correctly) and they played sort of amped-up Pixies-influenced hard rock with Middle Eastern tones. Yes, they have eclectic tastes...
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
This episode was a week late, as fate and events outside our control forced us to abandon recording last week. But we soldiered on this last Thursday just passed, sansLucas, who'll be taking an extended break from the show. The old crew one again!


We talked about male fruit flies turning to booze in the face of sexual rejection (yes, it actually happens), a pre-Cambrian fossil found with a skeleton, how the Russians want to dominate space (again), astronauts going blind, a new salt-tolerant strain of wheat, and why giant squids likely have such bloody enormous eyes.


clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
The latest SoT was another sausage fest - Me, Lucas Randall and the inimitable host, Ed Brown.


We talked about the "woman in the red dress" study (and I use the term "study" loosely...), bacteriophages (viruses that attack bacteria), the frozen Copper Age man and his various maladies, fatarses in offices, CO2-capture and bacteria, daydreaming and social skills, how testosterone messes up teamwork (as if there were ever any doubt), stem cells in human ovarian tissue, and the solar flare that hadn't hit at the time we were recording, but has by now, and as far as I'm aware, didn't actually do anything bad...

And for something completely random and unrelated, have a youtube link of the lead track Rise, Vulcan Spectre, the best thrash album of the year (yes I'm making that call now) by Norway's Nekromantheon. This album's even better than their brilliant 2010 effort Divinity of Death. You can keep your modern thrash, both the revivalists and the old bastards trying to remain relevant - this band tears your goddamn face off and then pisses in the gaping wound with acid. I especially like throwing this on when I need to wake the hell up before going to work at an ungodly hour.
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
I missed this episode due to work. And, as usual, I don't actually think it suffered from my absence. Quite the opposite, in fact.

Download here.

This week, the gang were joined by Sumen Rai, a former science communicator and now an industry analyst for defence and aerospace.

The subjects discussed were: meat grown in the lab, atom-sized transistors, seismic activity on the moon, robot fish and water worlds. I especially loved the discussion about lab-grown meat, the ethical questions that were raised, as well as the ecological and "humanist" issues. Good stuff.


And because I care, have this picture:
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
Holy crap, I've been meaning to do this since....well, September last year. And obviously I've been negligent in my duties of obsessively documenting every Science on Top podcast that's been released, but I'm going to make up for it from now on!

So, for newbies to my Elgay, I'm involved in a weekly podcast called Science On Top (named after Prez Obama's declaration that we should put "science back on top of the agenda"), where we discuss the latest in science news that strikes our fancy. I'm not on every podcast due to night shift some weeks, but the stalwart is the Ed Brown, he of the Deep Radio Voice and the guy who conceived the show idea, and holds the whole thing together, so massive Sciencey Props to him (he took a couple of weeks off for the episodes early on in this update, so Lucas Randall, another stalwart, amateur astronomer and lover of all things space chaired those ones. Large Science Props to him, too!)

Anyway, the list! I won't be writing these up in as much detail as I used to, as I think that's what stopped me from posting them in the first place. Laziness is a virtue, damn it.

If you're interested, click the square with our ugly mugs to listen to the episode, check out the links accompanying the topics, and leave abuse constructive criticism in the comments section or write a review on iTunes etc etc.

The Episodes )

....yes, I'm bored at work, why do you ask?
clappamungus: (Stewie dance)
[ profile] xraytheenforcer directed me to this a while ago:

(how, as an Aussie, I missed this and was informed by an American of its existence bemuses me, but anyway)

So, I now present you with this:

I wanted to make it into a user icon, but my old port-of-call for this sort of thing has been taken off the intertwats, and I can't be bothered looking up another one...


Jan. 16th, 2012 10:53 am
clappamungus: (Headbangin' skeleton)
"But I got ten dif'rent kinds of diseases..."

Fuck I love this band.
clappamungus: (Douse)
Today I did something I said I would never do - I signed up to

Why? Well, I was bored. Honestly, I was at work and as it's the start of the year, there is absolutely no content coming in off newswires, so by midday I was almost ready to flash the office to break up the monotony. For everyone's sake, I signed up to this blasted site instead.

More online presence. If I were a paranoid man, I could get worried that I'll end up on some list somewhere. You know, where they know all my habits - the music I listen to, my political affiliations, which way I dress...

But seriously, I have Faecesbook, this LJ, a rather defunct MySpace, a beer blog on Tumblr of all things, a science podcast and now a freaking For someone who's trying to get off social media, I appear to be doing a piss-poor job.

Oh well. I'll take the bastards down with me...
clappamungus: (King Diamond)
I already did this in Faecesbook because, well, I'm lazy, and it was easier. But damn it, I keep saying I'm going to stay off that shitty enabling social network of doom, and I'll be damned if I don't at least half get that right. So here we are, with album art and a youtube clip for each (well, if I can find one - I'm not going through all the fucktardry of actually uploading tracks myself if they're not there).

This is by no means all the releases I listened to, and there were some that didn't make the lists but were close (as evidenced by the "almost-rans"). And yes, they were all metal. Because I'm a narrow-minded, elitist wanktard that way, obviously. (In all seriousness, I did listen to non-metal this year but not enough to make as comprehensive a list as the one below).

The list )

Well, that post took way too long for something that only a few people will even bother reading... ;P
clappamungus: (Jeebus!)
Reply to this post and I will pick five of your icons; then make a post (including the meme info) and talk about the icons I chose.

[ profile] fvck picked: Clickinate )
clappamungus: (Hug?)
For some reason that godforsaken social media site of doom won't let me post this video, so I've fallen back on good ol' reliable LJ.

Anyway, as proof that I don't just listen to metal, here's the video of an old Melbourne band who are missed greatly. They put on a pretty good show.

They were always much more than your average plug-in-n'-play-n'-hope-for-the-best Melbourne indie act. This was one of their more straightforward rockers but they did some really interesting stuff with weird timings and unconventional song structures without being unnecessarily proggish. And the singer, Sianna Lee, had one hell of a set of pipes.

Speaking of Faecesbook, those of you on mine might have seen my beer n' vinyl photo project. It's being discontinued there as I'm really starting to get the shits with FB, and it'll be resurrected here, on a new tumblr site ( Yes, I realise using tumblr as a replacement for Faecesbook is akin to cutting my testicles off to spite my future spawn, but I was convinced by someone who knows better that it's one of the easier blogging sites to use.

Oh, and no, this is not the blog I've set up to use as a writing aid, even though there;s a long rambly entry on it! That one's still....a work in progress. And by by "work in progress" I mean "sweet bugger all".
clappamungus: (Lab Rats)
So, I've sucked at writing up the last few Science on Top episodes. Mostly because I missed episode 19 and, because I wasn't actually in it, just forgot about writing it up. And then each episode just kept piling up and it became a know how it is. "I'll do it! Really I will! I'll...ah bugger it. Mañana. And obviously, mañana turned into many mañanas. Yes, I'm aware that that's not the plural form of mañana.

Anyway, update dump:

Science on Top 19 - Piece By Piece )

Science on Top 20 - Smooshed )

Science on Top 21 - Don Who )

Science on Top 22 - Some Wrongness In There )

Science on Top 23: Open-Cut Mines are Scenic )

PHEW! Remind me to never delay writing up SoT again...


clappamungus: (Default)

March 2013

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