Biology

Adventures in Ethics and Science

Category archives for Biology

Younger offspring: Hey, look what I grew! Dr. Free-Ride: Wow, those are tall. Younger offspring: It’s a bean plant.

Here are some of the thoughts and questions that stayed with me from this session. (Here are my tweets from the session and the session’s wiki page.) Among other things, this panel took up the article panelist Lindsey Hoshaw wrote about the garbage patch for the New York Times and some of the reaction to…

Session description: Debris in the North Pacific Gyre received unprecedented attention in 2009 with voyages from the Algalita Marine Research Foundation, Project Kaisei, and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Each voyage integrated online outreach into its mission, but emphasized very different aspects of the problem. What are the challenges of creating a major outreach effort…

Yeah, sure that plush Borrelia burgdorferi (the bacterium that causes Lyme disease) is playfully cuddling the plush penicillin now. But can their friendship last?

The new piece by Natalie Angier at the New York Times may make things a little more ticklish for people who pick their food on the basis of the characteristics it has or lacks as an organism:

Dr. Free-Ride: Any ideas for tomorrow’s sprog blog? Younger offspring: I wanted to do how photosynthesis works. Dr. Free-Ride: Did you do any research on that since last week? Younger offspring: I don’t do research.

The Free-Ride offspring try to explain what it means for an organism to be adapted to its environment, and why it matters: Dr. Free-Ride: OK, so you’ve been learning in school about? Younger offspring: Different adaptations. Dr. Free-Ride: Can you explain what an adaptation is? Younger offspring: Well, I forgot.

Actually, it might be a philosophical question. Younger offspring: One of my classmates told me that you fart every second.

Thursday, October 8, at 8 pm, the Firebird Ensemble will be performing The Origin Cycle, eight selections from Charles Darwin’s work Origin of Species set to music. The performance will be at Stanford University’s Campbell Recital Hall, and tickets are free, but you’ll want to reserve your seats online ahead of the performance. Here’s a…

I don’t usually go looking for a fight, but there are some cases where I’ll make an exception. You know, of course that I’m a big fan of DonorsChoose. And you’ll recall that PETA’s tactics make them a problematic organization as far as I’m concerned regardless of what your views on animal welfare or animal…