Happy Pi Day!

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It’s Pi Day today (3/14 as a US-style date). Oxford Connect is running some interesting events in association with the day, including a large-scale collaborative effort to determine pi using Buffon’s needle (like this):

Why not join in, or follow the Oxford lecture on YouTube?

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Habemus Papam

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The Pope (left) and the Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope or “Pope Scope” (right)

The world has a new Pope, Francis. What does that mean for science? Well, some past papal scientific milestones are these:

The Jesuit order, from which Francis comes, has a tradition of being involved with science, although Teilhard de Chardin was a step too far for them. And Pope Francis does in fact have a scientific background: he studied chemistry before becoming a priest.