Reviews for The Science of Shakespeare: A New Look at the Playwright’s Universe

A "lucid history of early Renaissance science" — The National Post

"...a fascinating and wide-ranging exploration of the astronomical knowledge of the era" — The Chronicle-Herald

"Falk takes the reader on an eventful tour through science in the early modern era...It’s an enjoyable read, and will appeal to non-specialists, but nonetheless is based on a comprehensive engagement with the pertinent academic scholarship. The work is well-informed, enthusiastic, and recommended to anyone seeking a new take on the oft-studied Bard." — Chemistry World

Latest News

100 Years of General Relativity

Posted on Thursday, November 5, 2015

Einstein's masterpiece, 100 years old this year, continues to provoke. My cover story for Cosmos magazine on general relativity's first century -- and where it may still take us.

Episode 9 of BookLab is now out!

Posted on Thursday, October 22, 2015

Episode 9 of BookLab is now out! In this episode, two new science books go head to head. Both books look at the history of our species, the rise of science, and how one puny primate conquered the planet. It's The Upright Thinkers, by Leonard Mlodinow versus Sapiens, by Yuval Noah Harari. (The podcast can also be found on iTunes and SoundCloud.)

A new Canadian eye on the sky: Dragonfly

Posted on Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Can an off-the-shelf telephoto lens be used for cutting-edge astronomy? If you put enough of them together, sure! I report on a new telescope array -- a Canadian-led project called Dragonfly -- in the September/October issue of SkyNews. (The article is available on-line to subscribers.)

The Science of Addiction

Posted on Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The accepted medical wisdom is that addiction is a disease. Neuroscientist and former addict Marc Lewis sees it differently. I review his book "The Biology of Desire" in the Globe & Mail.

Last Hominin Standing

Posted on Monday, June 29, 2015

How likely -- or not -- was the evolution of Homo sapiens? Was the appearance of an upright, intelligent ape predictable, or a mind-boggling stroke of luck? My feature story for Aeon magazine.

Pixels to Sentences

Posted on Monday, June 22, 2015

Canadian computer scientists have developed a neural-network-based program that can tell you what it's looking at (and gets it right, most of the time). My news story for Scientific American.

A New Era of Machine Intelligence

Posted on Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Neural-network based artificial intelligence is about to change everything. My feature story for the University of Toronto Magazine, focusing on the work of machine learning pioneer Geoffrey Hinton.

The Quantum Revolution

Posted on Monday, June 1, 2015

Quantum computing could be a game-changer -- and Canadian researchers in Waterloo's "quantum valley" are leading the way. My feature story for CPA Magazine.

The Allure of the Invisible

Posted on Saturday, April 25, 2015

The idea of invisibility has a long and provocative history. I review Philip Ball's new book, Invisible: The Dangerous Allure of the Unseen, in today's Globe and Mail newspaper.

Reaching out to E.T.

Posted on Monday, March 30, 2015

The search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) is a half-century-old quest -- but as I report in Slate Future Tense, there's a new, and very heated debate these days: Should we make the first move, and reach out to "E.T."?