July year-round

The blog about the ph-word and about doing research under weird conditions is back. Apparently, the weirdest conditions that ever held it back from being punctual were having a job as a university lecturer… But July is the second start of great things in a year, and this inspires us people, even when the month is actually irrelevant because you find yourself living in a place where it is July year-round.

Greetings from Kuala Lumpur.

If you’re here for the physics news, here they are, three months bundled together and June on its own. If you’re here for the constructive procrastination, here is a post about the tech scene in Serbia, and thoughts on the books I’ve read recently (incidentally, the 100th post of the blog). But if you really are here for the procrastination, read on for personal news.

The highlight of teaching astronomy and astrophysics was arguably taking everyone for a star observation at a village in the jungle. The sky didn’t indulge us a lot that night, but my bleak sense of humour insists that the trip was a success since nobody ended up in hospital nor the organizers in jail.

The sky did look better on long exposure though. [by mingkang29]
Beautiful Malacca.

The highlight of extracurriculum activities probably was being back to bollywood dancing, after a few years’ hiatus, taking part in a small amateur show. Other things that managed to creep into my inhumane schedule were a small trip to beautiful Malacca, a great trip at Bangkok, and much sufi meditation. Plus, I discovered that the best role to have in a drinking party is neither that of the host nor of the guest, but that of the neighbour of the host (think about it for a minute).

Glimpses from a sufi’s house.

On the writing front, somewhere at the beginning of the blogging hiatus, a piece of mine appeared on Physics Today. I had the joy of writing about what I consider the most promising ph-news of last year: the James Webb space telescope is seeing very old galaxies that are larger and more well-shaped that they should. The news attracted much attention, but as far as I can tell there hadn’t been any news article about why these are surprising and even exhilarating, so I set out to write one.

Sending you my cheers from my evening window, a bright pixel in the galaxy of the cityscape — till next month.

Schrodinger’s cat in Bangkok.

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