Puzzles for July 2022

30 June, 2022

07a

For this month’s skeptical crossword puzzle, we return to a favourite theme of Greek & Roman Mythology, together with the usual Picture Puzzles, Mixed Bag Questions and Logic & Maths Puzzles. They’re all at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE. Scroll down for earlier recent monthly puzzles, or use the ARCHIVE links at the bottom of the page to access puzzles going back to 2010.
Enjoy!


Puzzles for June 2022

5 June, 2022

june puzzlesJune’s Puzzles  are at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE, where you’ll find seven new rebus-type Picture Puzzles, followed by links to twenty Mixed Bag (Triva / General Knowledge); a Crossword puzzle, based on Frauds and Scams.; and a set of ten Logic & Maths Puzzles, with worked solutions provided.
Enjoy!


Puzzles for May 2022

11 May, 2022

Puzzles for the month of May 2022 are at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE.

The Crossword puzzle is themed towards General Skeptical Issues. 

Scroll down the puzzles page to find previous puzzles from May 2021. For earlier puzzles go to the archives links at the bottom of the PUZZLES PAGE..

Read the rest of this entry »


Puzzles for March 2022

28 February, 2022

march puzzlesaPicture Puzzles, Mixed Bag questions, Logic & Maths Questions and Skeptical Crossword for the month of March 2022 have pride of place at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE.

The Crossword puzzle delves  into Cryptids and Mythical Creatures (acknowledging that one person’s cryptid IS another person’s mythical creature).

Scroll down the puzzles page to find all previous puzzles from May 2021. Earlier puzzles going back to 2010 are available from the archives links at the bottom of the PUZZLES PAGE..

Read the rest of this entry »


Darwin Day 2022

10 February, 2022

906px-Charles_Darwin_statue_5661r

Skeptics, Rationalists, Humanists and other like-minded people world-wide have gravitated towards February 12 as an annual opportunity to celebrate the things that unite us. This year, that date marks Charles Darwin’s 213th birthday.

We invite you to visit Darwin-related material already on this website:

Charles Darwin Articles

“About Charles Darwin”

https://vicskeptics.wordpress.com/2007/11/27/about-charles-darwin/

Darwin – A Great Scientist by Rosslyn Ives https://vicskeptics.wordpress.com/events/darwin-a-great-scientist/

Darwin Day 2022 – Musings on the Voyage https://vicskeptics.wordpress.com/2022/02/10/darwin-day-2022-musings-on-the-voyage/ 

For Schools: – The Darwin Day Suite of Classroom Exercises

https://vicskeptics.wordpress.com/2019/01/22/for-schools-darwin-day-february-12-2/

Charles Darwin Crosswords

42 Crossword feb 2014

64 Crossword (Darwin) Dec 2015

116 Crossword (Darwin Special) Feb 2020


Darwin Day 2022 – Musings on The Voyage

10 February, 2022

by Ken Greatorex

Young-Charles-Darwin-statue-by-Anthony-Smith-(Christ's-College-Cambridge)-3

Bronze statue of Charles Darwin as a 22-year-old undergraduate. Christ’s College, Cambridge. Artist: Anthony Smith

As a former teacher of evolutionary biology and subsequent enthusiastic promoter of Darwin Day, it is perhaps surprising that actually reading On the Origin of Species only recently made my bucket list. Read the rest of this entry »


Puzzles for February 2022

31 January, 2022

FEBRUARY puzzlesFebruary’s Picture Puzzles, Mixed Bag questions, Logic & Maths Questions and Skeptical Crossword are at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE.

The Crossword is fairly modest this month, with allusions to Science vs Pseudoscience.

Scroll down the puzzles page to find all previous puzzles from May 2001. Earlier puzzles going back to 2010 are available from the archives links at the bottom of the PUZZLES PAGE..

Read the rest of this entry »


Puzzles for January 2022

31 December, 2021

08We kick off the new year with the usual mix of Picture Puzzles, Mixed Bag questions, Logic & Maths questions and a Skeptical Crossword with Astrology as its theme. They’re at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE.

Lower down the puzzles page you’ll find all 2001 puzzles from May. Earlier puzzles going back to 2010 are available from the archives links at the bottom of the Puzzles page.

Enjoy!


Good News from Belgium

10 December, 2021

Belgian authors, Patrick Vermeren (56) and Bart Van de Ven (37) have won an action in the Appeals Court in Belgium. “Business Coach” Carl Van de Velde had previously unsuccessfully sued them for defamation in the Court of First Instance, but chose to appeal. At that stage the two author’s legal costs already stood at about A$85,000.

The Belgium-based Skeptical society SKEPP stepped in to support the authors and to seek international support for their on-going legal battles.

Patrick and Bart had written an article for SKEPP’s magazine about two highly successful companies that used dubious theories such as NLP (Neurolinguistic Programming) and characterization of people based on their skull (phrenology) and physiognomy (interpretation of outward appearance, in this case of face and hair). One of the companies was the Carl Van de Velde Training Institute. The authors had criticized the content of its pseudo-scientific master classes as well as the marketing strategies it used to attract participants.

Paul De Belder, President of SKEPP writes: “It has taken quite some time but today the Appeals Court in Belgium judged that free speech and well-founded criticism are more important than the perceived wrongs of the commercial organization being criticized.”

Although additional legal defence costs of over A$100,000 have been generated by the Appeal process, SKEPP considers that its own “war chest” together with awarded costs and international support of over A$70,000 should enable it to cover its costs.

Vic Skeptics is proud to have contributed and to have publicised the issue locally. Apparently much of the money raised internationally by SKEPP’s fundraiser came anonymously via PayPal and bank transfer from small organisations and individuals in Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

The last word goes to Paul De Belder:

“Thank you so much for your support. If ever one of your organizations gets in trouble, we will stand by you.”


Puzzles for December 2021

30 November, 2021

december puzzlesA new crop of Picture Puzzles, Mixed Bag questions), themed Crossword and Logic & Maths questions and a Skeptical Crossword are at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE.

This month’s Crossword is appropriately themed “Holidays and Festivals

Scrolling down the puzzles page will get you all this year’s puzzles since May.  Earlier puzzles going back to 2010 are available from the archives links at the bottom of the Puzzles page.

Enjoy!


Puzzles for November 2021

31 October, 2021

novemberNew puzzles for November 2021 are now at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE. They include the usual Picture Puzzles, Mixed Bag set (Trivia / General Knowledge), themed Crossword and Logic & Maths set.

In addition there are some extra “Lockdown” sets (Picture Puzzles, Crossword Clues to test your vocabulary; and Logic & Maths sets).

Our Crossword Puzzle this month returns to the theme of Conspiracy Theories, concentrating on the weird and wonderful notions that have arisen in the last two years.

Previous puzzles may be accessed by scrolling down through the puzzles page. Earlier puzzles are available from the archives links at the bottom of the Puzzles page.

Enjoy!


Vale Martin Hadley

21 October, 2021

Sad news from Australian Skeptics Inc. Martin was a good friend to, and helpful supporter of Australian Skeptics (Victorian Branch).

martin hadley

“It is our sad duty to report the death of Martin Hadley, former president of Australian Skeptics and a stalwart of the skeptical movement.

Martin was a barrister, dealing mainly in commercial disputes. He joined the committee of Australian Skeptics Inc in NSW in 2000, and was president from 2005-2008, after which he became treasurer, a position he held until his death.

He made himself available to offer legal advice on skeptical issues to both ASI and other state committees, as well as on matters impacting on members of the broader skeptical community. As treasurer, he was instrumental in maintaining the funds held by the Australian Skeptics Science and Education Foundation, which was established in the mid-90s following a sizable bequest and which offers financial support and grants to worthy causes.

His approach ranged from stern advice to sly humour, mixed with an interest in languages, religion, wine, and sailing (in particular, the restoration of the 19th century tall ship, the James Craig).

He died of a heart attack on October 18. Funeral arrangements will be announced soon.

He will be greatly missed.”


Skepticon 2021 tickets

6 October, 2021

Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st November.

Tickets are now available.

It has been decided to run Skepticon 2021 as an exclusively on-line event. Skepticon will continue to be a collaboration between Australian Skeptics Inc, operating from Sydney, and NZ Skeptics in Wellington.

Each $40 ticket buys you access for the weekend via one device.


What Sound DOES a Duck Make?

1 October, 2021

by Ken Greatorex

duck headerYou’d probably answer “QUACK!

And indeed, you’d be right some of the time. Some ducks quack. Most don’t. Because I’m a Skeptic in insufferably pedantic mode, I just thought I’d point that out before proceeding.

If you’d like to hear a range of sounds made by different duck species, (including quacks), go here: https://www.soundboard.com/sb/Duck_Sounds_audio

Skeptics use the word “quack” to define a particular kind of person:

a fraudulent or ignorant pretender to medical skill” or “a person who pretends, professionally or publicly, to have skill, knowledge, qualification or credentials they do not possess; a charlatan or snake oil salesman” – Dictionary.com

Read the rest of this entry »


Puzzles for October 2021

30 September, 2021

01October’s Puzzles are now at the top of the  PUZZLES PAGE.

The Crossword Puzzle this month has another look at Weasel Words, with particular attention to “ad-speak”, the sometimes tortuous use of the English language in commercial advertising.

Don’t forget that our Logic Problems now come with solutions as well as answers, and “may” have educational as well as entertainment value. (Now there’s an example of “ad-speak!)

Previous puzzles going back to May 2021 may be accessed by scrolling down through the puzzles page. Hundred of earlier puzzles are available from the archives links at the bottom of the Puzzles page.

Enjoy!