Saturday, February 06, 2010

one step behind

A busy week filled with the likes of Mozart and Mahler, Lin, Lunin and Maldacena, a touch of hanzi, some couchsurfing, plenty of mathematica, pondering over entropy and density matrices, causality and Greens functions, a little genetics from MIT (an incredible online course that I would recommend to anybody who wants to know the fundamentals of modern genetics and more besides - Eric Lander is an inspiring lecturer!), organising conferences, postdoctoral seminar groups and journal clubs, and a little more besides. Consequently as I continue with an admixture of the above today I shall leave you with a link to an article I wrote for a Taiwanese online magazine after a former couchsurfer asked if I could contribute something related to new results on planetary formation models. Given that I'm no expert on this subject I figured it best to discuss only the basics of the result and to focus on what generalities can be drawn about the scientific approach as a whole. The article can be found here.

P.S. A public acknowledgment of a linguistic weakness: I'm finally up to 1000 individual Chinese characters (that's taken me around a year's serious study with three previous years studying passivly). This so far adds up to around 2000-3000 composite words, but there are still a few similar characters that in simplified Chinese are so close I keep tripping up on these basics. Today I've been struggling withand . (cheng (completed), huo (maybe), xian (salty)). These three along with 同,间,向,何,问,珂 are my current personal Chinese demons.


toomanytribbles said...

i'm puzzled how you can possibly confuse such obviously different symbols!

Jonathan Shock said...

As I had hoped, simply taking the move to write them in the blog has helped and I think I'm on top of all these (including the xiang, tong, wen, he, ke etc.) characters now!

Ghazala Khan said...

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Ghazala Khan
The Pakistani Spectator