I have been waiting for a while to write this post; mainly because I have been trying to choose the most appropriate time. It almost came a few weeks ago, when we all received the fantastic news that ISIS has finally been kicked out of Palmyra.
One of the most notable events this week has been something that has reminded me of my first ever post on this blog. This has of course been the computer program AlphaGo’s victory at the ancient Chinese boardgame of Wei-qi (as a proud Sinophile who has lived in Taiwan for two years, I’ve spent most of the week being frustrated to the point of rage by everyone describing it as a Japanese game, even though the only differences between Go and Wei-qi are flat bottomed stones versus rounded ones, a slightly different scoring system and a more easily pronounced name) over Lee Sedol; the second highest ranked human player in the world. Continue reading
One of my long time armchair interests is astronomy, a subject I’ve kept a foot in for a long time. I’ve always enjoyed the myths and legends associated with the stars, planets and constellations and the rules and logic of astrology; which (even when you don’t believe in them) are rich sources of writing inspiration, and I know both my Roman and Chinese star signs (Scorpio and Tiger). I don’t read New Scientist regularly anymore, but I keep an eye out for interesting new theories and discoveries. The most recent one that has gripped my imagination is the exo-planet Gliese 436 b.