Adventures in Ethics and Science

Archives for April, 2006

Over at Evolgen, RPM links to an article that lists ten “basic questions” to which ten different scientists think high school graduates should know the answers. (It was one question from each scientist, so it’s unclear whether all ten would agree that they are the ten most important questions, or even that all ten of…

My favorite T-shirt says “I [heart] irony. It’s a great shirt, because no one can be absolutely sure that I love irony. Maybe I’m ambivalent about irony and I’m wearing the shirt … ironically. Despite what the Ethan Hawke character in Reality Bites may have said, irony is not as straightforward as meaning the opposite…

Poetry by Marianne Moore I, too, dislike it: there are things that are important beyond all this fiddle. Reading it, however, with a perfect contempt for it, one discovers in it after all, a place for the genuine.

Today at Inside Higher Education, an article identifies “The Real Science Ethics Issues”. Which means, I suppose, you don’t have to keep taking my word about what’s an issue and what is not. The focus of the article is not on the flashier instances of fraud, but on more mundane stuff that may rot the…

Joining my cell-mates.

Seen at Afarensis and Evolgen. Yeah, it’s another internet quiz, but it’s science-y and the graphics are really cool.

Over at Crooked Timber, John Quiggin lays into climate scientist Richard Lindzen. His post begins with reasons one might be inclined to take Lindzen’s views seriously: Unlike nearly all “sceptics”, he’s a real climate scientist who has done significant research on climate change, and, also unlike most of them, there’s no evidence that he has…

101 Movies meme.

I saw it at Julie’s. Below the fold is a list of 101 movies that the movie-intelligensia think you should have seen in order to have an intelligent discussion about film. I have bolded the movies I have seen. As well (though I’m adding this part), I’m italicizing movies I have officially “seen” but know…

Dr. Free-Ride: Hey, did you learn any more science today? Younger offspring: Yes! More dinosaur stuff. Dr. Free-Ride: What kinds of dinosaur stuff? Younger offspring: Stuff about dinosaurs with sharp, pointy teeth. Dr. Free-Ride: Is there another song? Younger offspring: Yeah, but I’m not ready to teach it to you yet.

Hierarchies of misconduct.

In response to some interesting discussions with my students, I’m gearing up for a longish post on plagiarism’s place in the pantheon of scientific misconduct. To the extent that scientists can provide a clear definition of misconduct, it’s usually FFP: fabrication, falsification, and plagiarism. So, plagiarism is in there, but there’s frequently a sense that…

You may recall that a couple months ago the New York Times ran this piece on the habits of students who email their professors. Today, there’s something of a follow-up at Inside Higher Ed. The upshot seems to be that being polite, and especially not assuming an overly-familiar tone towards one’s professor simply because one…