The Corpus Callosum

Archives for November, 2007

Sun in a Coal Mine

Sun Microsystems is planning to put a data center in an old coal mine.  The idea is to save on energy costs.  In fact, they expect nine million dollars per year on electricity.  This is because much of the electrical operating cost is for cooling. This leads me to think we should do the same…

Flickr Pic(kr) 8

The Golden Retriever is the finest breed of dog in the world.  These dogs are smart, and noble.   I don’t have any dogs right now, but if I do get a dog, it will be a Golden Retriever. The photo was taken by POHAN.

The cost of health insurance has been increasing, typically at double-digit annual rates.   With the expansion of information technology, particularly electronic claims processing, one would expect that the insurance companies would be operating much more efficiently now that they were ten years ago. Perhaps they are.  Some would insist that they certainly are more…

Increasing Serotonin Without Drugs

Simon N. Young, PhD, the Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, has written an editorial: How To Increase Serotonin In The Human Brain Without Drugs.  In is published in this month’s edition of the Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience. The Journal is an open-access journal, so anyone can read it.  The PDF is here.…

Freudian Slippers

The term “Freudian Slip” has been the subject of innumerable puns.  This one is new to me: It’s the perfect holiday gift for shrinks in cold climates. HT: Mental Floss

The Inevitable Decline of Science

According to Google, we are heading into a bad season for Science: This is from Google Trends.  Every December, there is a steep drop in the number of searches conducted for “science.”  Plus, there has been a year-to-year decline.  What could it possibly mean?  

Stop the Catalogs

The environmental consequences of shopping catalogs have been well documented.  For example, over eight million tons of trees are consumed each year in the production of paper catalogs. Now there is a website where you can go to opt out of them: catalogchoice.org. (Note the .org, not .com) They’ve been up for about a month,…

Errors in Texas Textbooks

The San Antonio Express-News reports that “Reviewers have found 109,263 errors in sample copies of math textbooks to be used next fall in Texas.” One second-grade math book, for example, has 4 plus 7 equaling 10. OK, anybody can make a mistake.  But at least own up to it.  Their explanation: Many of the math…

Legislation Regarding Generic Drugs

In 1984, the Hatch-Waxman Drug Price Competition and Patent Restoration Act was passed.  This was an important development that changed forever the economics of the pharmaceutical industry.   NEJM has a nice, short, open-access article on the history and consequences of the Act.   The author, Richard G. Frank, Ph.D., points out some interesting facts:…

Try Before You Tat

Carl Zimmer has been documenting the results of various scientist’s impulses to have themselves inked with images related to science.  The phenomenon is something of an oddity, though, since scientists tend to be more on the contemplative side, as opposed to being impulsive.  Now, for those who would like to test their hypotheses before putting…