A Blog Around The Clock

Archives for September, 2006

How to win an argument when you’re wrong.

More on blogospheric rhetoric, via Newsvine.

Skeptic’s Circle

The 44th Skeptics’ Circle is now up on Salto sobrius.

You’re ugly, but I like your kids anyway

Mother Birds Give A Nutritional Leg Up To Chicks With Unattractive Fathers: Mother birds deposit variable amounts of antioxidants into egg yolks, and it has long been theorized that females invest more in offspring sired by better quality males. However, a study from the November/December 2006 issue of Physiological and Biochemical Zoology shows that even…

Scientists Fight Back

Scientists Fight Back! Announcing Scientists and Engineers for America: Concerned about the ideological and partisan manipulation of science, compromising of scientific integrity and harassment of scientists by the Bush Administration and Congress, leaders in the scientific and engineering communities announced the launch of a new organization on Wednesday, September 27th. The group, called Scientists and…

What is expertise?

Burglars found to be as skilled as pilots: Bur­glars are so good at rob­bing hous­es, they should be re­garded as ex­perts in their field on a pa­r with pi­lots, new re­search con­cludes. Psy­chol­o­gists Claire Nee and Amy Meenaghan of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Ports­mouth, U.K. found that bur­glars’ speed and ef­fi­cien­cy puts them on a lev­el…

Development of Spots on Buterfly Wings

A really cool new study: DailyScience: How Butterflies Got Their Spots: A ‘Supergene’ Controls Wing Pattern Diversity: To explore the genetic backgrounds of each of these species, the authors crossed different races of each species and genotyped the offspring in order to identify genes responsible for the color patterns. Thus, they were able to map…

Lions’ manes

I saw this ScienceDaily report earlier today and thought: “What’s new?” I recall a study with similar conclusions from just a couple of months ago, and even that was not that new – I used the example in teaching about 5-6 years ago (then dropped the example as the literature got more and more contentious).…

An interesting paper came out about nine months ago about a proposed new universal law of biology, so I blogged about it on January 17, 2006 and updated on February 20, 2006.

Just Like “Dred Scott”…

Agonist (via Melissa and Amanda) reports that “comma” is a dog-whistle code word that Bush used to signal to the Fundies: The phrase is: “Never put a period where God has put a comma.” Which is to say – it ain’t over yet, and God may well make it better. So Iraq’s bad, but if…

Opinions are split. Matt Nisbett think it is bad here, here and here. Sara Robinson thinks it was good here and here. Although I have no great love for Bill Clinton, I am siding with Sara here (read her posts to see why), just on gut feeling. But also, check out this AOL poll (never…