bioephemera

Archives for June, 2009

. . . at least according to a Japanese researcher, who trained them to differentiate “bad” and “good” children’s art. According to New Scientist, This isn’t Watanabe’s first efforts to teach art appreciation to pigeons. In 1995, he and two colleagues published a paper showing that pigeons could learn to discriminate Picasso paintings from Monets…

a ten year old rape victim from the Congo photo by Endre Vestvik Almost a month ago, a number of bloggers launched Silence is the Enemy, a blog initiative against sexual violence. Since then, we’ve seen a number of thoughtful and provocative conversations throughout the blogosphere, trying to pinpoint the factors, like war, that can…

This may be the best BBC story EVER. Seriously: Australian wallabies are eating opium poppies and creating crop circles as they hop around “as high as a kite”, a government official has said. “We have a problem with wallabies entering poppy fields, getting as high as a kite and going around in circles,” Lara Giddings…

Nature has gone science journalism crazy, with no less than six new articles on the subject! My favorite is “Science Journalism: Toppling the Priesthood,” by Toby Murcott, who argues that coverage of peer review is a necessary component of truly investigative, accurate science journalism.

The “gastronomical cocktail” called “sex on a drip” is just one reason to hop a plane to Singapore and visit The Clinic, a theme restaurant that’s probably not for the squeamish. Their website boasts, “Clinic’s unique alfresco is easily identified by its hospital whites, colourful pills, syringes, drips, test-tubes, and paraphernalia in all manner of…

According to Boing Boing, two homeless men got in a brawl over quantum physics, which ended with a skateboard to the face: At the time, Fava was chatting with an acquaintance, who is also homeless, about “quantum physics and the splitting of atoms,” according to prosecutors. Keller joined in the conversation and, for reasons unknown,…

“Assessing the Impact of Science Funding,” by Julia Lane, from the June 5 Science, ends with a gratifying shout-out to visualization as an essential part of the scientific process: A related intellectual investment is to advance understanding of how to convey complex answers about the impact of science investments to the public. Emerging visualization techniques…

Roomba x Alarm Clock = Clocky

Clocky sounds like R2D2 and looks kind of like an ATV’s single-axled, pastel cub. In other words, it’s really, really cute. Which is why when Clocky wakes you with its piercing warbles, crashes to your floor and rolls under your bed, you won’t want to smash its little display with your fist. At least, we…

I’m here in DC at the Newseum for the State of Innovation Summit, a collaboration between SEED and the Council on Competitiveness. The crowd is pretty awesome – right now Adam Bly, SEED’s CEO, is sitting a few rows from me with E.O. Wilson. Earlier, Wayne Clough, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, talked about a…

Red Line crash, June 22, 2009, between Takoma Park and Fort Totten stations Photo from Fox5 News, via DCist As many of you already know, DC’s Red Line suffered a fatal crash this evening during rush hour. One train had stopped. A second train behind it failed to stop, overtook the first train, and ran…