Experimentation and measurement, by W.J. Youden
One of the primary tasks of all explorers – and scientists are
explorers – is to prepare a map of an unknown region. Such a
map will serve as a valuable guide to all subsequent travelers.
The measurements made by countless researchers have been
studied by mathematicians and much of the world of measurements
has been mapped out.


The Passionate Scientist: Emotion in Scientific Cognition, by Paul Thagard
Current research in cognitive science is increasingly challenging the view that emotions and reason are antagonistic to each other.

The new science of Memetics (Chapter 11 from The Selfish Gene) by Richard Dawkins
A new kind of replicator has recently emerged on this very planet. It is staring us in the face. It is still in its infancy, still drifting clumsily about in its primeval soup, but already it is achieving evolutionary change at a rate that leaves the old gene panting far behind.

Finding Feynman, by Alan Alda
Alan Alda's Commencement speech to the Caltech class of 2002, about physicist Richard Feynman.

The Ideological Immune System: Resistance to New Ideas in Science, by Jay Stuart Snelson
The history of the creation and disclosure of scientific ideas shows us that the more important, profound, and revolutionary a new idea, the more likely educated, intelligent, successful adults will resist understanding and accepting those new ideas. (full-text pdf)

The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences, by Eugene Wigner
The enormous usefulness of mathematics in the natural sciences is something bordering on the mysterious and that there is no rational explanation for it.


AusHSI Research Notes
Videos designed to give a quick overview about statistical research techniques used at the Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation.


Yellow Fluff and other Curious Encounters
A grand tour of characters and their stories of love and loss in the name of science.


The Normal Law of Error, W.J. Youden (typesetting by the author)

Einstein, dice and the bell curve

Book descriptions

Beauty and Revolution in Science, by James W. McAllister
The first systematic study of the aesthetic evaluations that scientists pass on their theories.

Chance: The Life of Games & the Game of Life, by Joaquim P. Marques de Sá
The mathematics of chance in a broad variety of contexts.

"Big and Difficult Challenges"
Resources on public policy in the areas of science, engineering, and medicine from National Academies Press, organized around Barack Obama's State of the Union address.

Interactive Websites

Foldit: Solve Puzzles For Science
Knowing the structure of a protein is key to understanding how it works and to targeting it with drugs. Figuring out which of the many, many possible structures is the best one is regarded as one of the hardest problems in biology today and current methods take a lot of money and time, even for computers. Foldit attempts to predict the structure of a protein by taking advantage of humans' puzzle-solving intuitions and having people play competitively to fold the best proteins.


Stochastic methods for modelling, for reducing, and for controlling uncertainty, in contrast to the methods of traditional science.

Scientists talk about what inspired them to pursue the careers they chose and describe some of the most fascinating aspects of their research.