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"All the really important things come as a big surprise."

An interview with physicist Freeman Dyson in Quanta magazine.
posted by thatwhichfalls on Mar 30, 2014 - 32 comments

Looking for Some Waist Heat

A five-part series on the ultimate limit on technology, and how that limit could help us find other civilizations: 1 2 3 4 5 [via]
posted by cthuljew on Dec 12, 2012 - 16 comments

Wipe your hands on paper towels

An article in Mayo Clinic Proceedings compares twelve different studies to determine which way of drying one's hands is the most sanitary, and concludes that the provision of Paper Towels is more effective than Blow Dryers. (previously: paper towels found to be less environmentally-friendly in paper commissioned by Dyson, inventor of the Airblade)
posted by Greg Nog on Dec 5, 2012 - 74 comments

How We Know

How We Know. An essay about information theory in the New York Review of Books by Freeman Dyson, building off a review of James Gleick's The Information. [more inside]
posted by The Michael The on Feb 26, 2011 - 42 comments

Freeman Dyson's Global Warming Heresy

The Danger of Cosmic Genius. Why is Freeman Dyson now considered "perhaps our most prominent global-warming skeptic?" Previously
posted by zarq on Jan 19, 2011 - 50 comments

Dyson Blue?

The latest advert for Dyson's Air Multiplier fan is great. [SLYT] [more inside]
posted by alby on Jul 18, 2010 - 88 comments

Biggest breakthroughs of the next 50 years

What will be the biggest scientific breakthroughs of the next 50 years? As part of their 50th anniversary celebration, the New Scientist asked 70 prominent minds for ideas on the subject. You can read the thoughts of scientists like Freeman Dyson, Benoit Mandelbrot and Jane Goodall individually, or browse by topic. For example, eight thinkers have something to say about alien life. The links to browse by topic can be found at the beginning of the main link. Also, compare with this thread about similar predictions from 1950.
posted by jeffmshaw on Nov 19, 2006 - 89 comments

...almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

"...the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything is..." "Yes? Yes!?" "...42."
via Dyson, Montgomery, Princeton, a cup of tea - as presented by Seed Magazine.
posted by loquacious on Mar 28, 2006 - 41 comments

Dyson On The Paranormal or Expect A Miracle

Expect a miracle? Freeman Dyson on Littlewood's Law of Miracles: "...the total number of events that happen to us is about thirty thousand per day, or about a million per month. ...The chance of a miracle is about one per million events. Therefore we should expect about one miracle to happen, on the average, every month." From his review of book debunking the paranormal (whose views he isn't entirely willing to accept). Via Marginal Revolution
posted by Jos Bleau on Jul 14, 2004 - 33 comments

Push. No, pull!

Dyson telescope game. Fiendishly addictive. Don't ask me what it has to do with industrial vacuum cleaners. (Via Bifurcated Rivets)
posted by gottabefunky on Sep 25, 2003 - 29 comments

Smarter than the average water feature

GardeningFilter! James Dyson's Wrong Garden - water going uphill in a perpetual-motional Escher-like fashion; how is it done...?
posted by klaatu on May 21, 2003 - 9 comments

If the Jetsons had a vacuum cleaner, this would be it.
posted by mathowie on Feb 21, 2000 - 4 comments

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