“Education is all about changing your mind.”

This is a quotation from Kathy Bader, one of the PhD students involved in the Ordered Universe Project. It sums up an almost self-evident truth, and nonetheless it’s something one can sometimes forget when it comes to thinking about choosing between courses or jobs or generally between things to which one could devote one’s time and effort. Continue reading

Ordered Universe goes west


Macrobian map
A Macrobian map of the inhabitable world (source: cartographic-images.net)

Robert Grosseteste, following the most authoritative texts at his disposal, was convinced that the only land mass of the earth that was actually inhabitable was the part we would now say is bounded by the Atlantic on the west side, and by the Saharan desert to the south. Some representatives of the Ordered Universe group are about to put that view to the test, boldly boarding transatlantic flights to seek out parts of the world not even mentioned by Macrobius, Ovid, and Ptolemy. Continue reading

Journey to Kalamazoo

So, I’m in the History Department, not the Geography Department, and it didn’t seem all that far to get from Boston to Kalamazoo, and, the Durham IMEMS contingent has often travelled from Toronto to Kalamazoo which involves an interesting stay at the Port Huron/Sarnia Screenshot 2014-06-13 13.58.41crossing between Canada and the US. Travelling only in the US would bring the total travelling time down, surely, even if, on checking, the milage was a slightly eye-watering 900 miles. Continue reading