Theoretical Novelty = A new move in the opening phase of a game of chess that (usually) improves on the previously played alternatives
Theoretical Novelty = This blog, which is hopefully going to contain a few theories, as well as plenty of novel views, facts and ideas

Greetings one and all and welcome to this blog! I hope these first few typed words are going to be the beginning of something special. My name is Paul Hopwood and I am a keen member of the Skeptic (yes, that is the correct spelling in this instance) community, which aims to promote rational, evidence-based thinking. I am also an extremely big fan of science, both as an academic discipline and as a way of thinking. Furthermore, it is one of my stated aims to help improve the public understanding of science; and so the purpose of this blog is to be able to publicise these interests and my own views on them, as well as hearing the views of others. There will hopefully be some more posts to follow very soon; but for now I intend to use the rest of this opening post to explain in a little more detail the kinds of posts that I hope will be featured in this blog in the future.

Science Articles

Quite simply any articles/research papers/posts by scientists on the web that I find interesting, I will post here; hopefully with a few comments as to why it is of interest to me and may be interesting to a wider audience.

Book Reviews

As an avid reader, it will be a real pleasure to offer some fairly general reviews of the books I have read, as well as providing a motivation to read more!

General Articles

As part of my aim to (hopefully) help improve the public’s understanding of science, from time-to-time, I intend to write an article on a particular topic relating to science or Skepticism that is aimed at the lay-audience.

Public Talks

Having already given two (at the time of writing) talks for the York and Leeds branches of ‘Skeptics in the Pub’, as well as having attended numerous other public lectures; I wish to provide the wider audience with information on talks that may be of interest to them. I will also be indulging in some shameless self-publicity and posting about my own talks as well.


My own area of academic study was in Psychology, particularly Cognitive Psychology; which is the study of how the processes that take place in the brain affect our behaviour. This is my first scientific love; and I wish to have a separate section to discuss matters relating to cognitive performance.

Blogs and Websites

As simple as the title suggests – I intend to provide links to websites that I think are important/would be of interest to a scientific or sceptical audience, along with, once again, a few comments as to why I think they are of interest.

Any Other Business

I’m not exactly sure what this section will include yet, hence the title!

So, that’s pretty much it for now. I, of course, welcome any (sensible) comments and look forward to not only presenting material here, but engaging in any interesting discussions that may develop; as well as enjoying simply continuing to take part in the learning process.

Right! Begin!

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