evolgen

Archives for August, 2006

5 Random Quotes

Janet tagged everyone with the Random Quotes meme. The rules: “Go here and look through random quotes until you find 5 that you think reflect who you are or what you believe.”

Phylogeny Friday – 18 August 2006

Phylogeny Friday is back, bitches! Katherine’s gotta add me to her list ASAP. In the glorious return of PhyFridays, I give you the root of the tree of life. In the upcoming editions we’ll zoom in on a few parts of the tree to illustrate the diversity of certain taxa of interest. It’ll be kind…

Euphemisms for Penis in the Backfield

Is it possible to have a news item about college football, with people whose names remind you of musical legends, washed up rockers, and supporting actors in a Peter North movie? Could this be the perfect intersection of sports, pop culture, and dirty jokes? This story reads like a casting call for a John Holmes…

The World’s (Viral) Fair

David at the World’s Fair wants to know what makes a good viral campaign: Essentially, as scientific types who tend to analyse, over-analyse, supra-analyse things, and who like to categorize and follow empirical trends, I’m interesting in hearing what you think it is that sparks these viral outbursts of information outreach? This question (and apologies…

You Got a Fast Gene

David Haussler and colleagues have identified a 118 base pair sequence that has evolved really fast along the human lineage relative to the chimpanzee lineage (Carl Zimmer has a good review). In fact, this sequence differs by two base pairs out of 118 between chimpanzees and chickens, and 18 out of 118 between chimps and…

Check out this interview with Penn State football coach Joe Paterno: On the fragility of life: “I do a lot of walking, and every once in a while, I step on an ant. And I say to myself, ‘You know, we ain’t nothing but ants.’ “ I wonder if JoePa has ever looked at the…

You happy Braveheart? >

Hawks is, well, Hawkish

You all (or y’all or yins or whatever) know about the article in Science that says Americans are dumber than everyone on Earth except the Turkish (see the concise version from the NYTimes if you don’t have access to Science). It’s because we don’t know jack shit about evolution. And we don’t know jack shit…

The Life and Times of Ernst Mayr

There is a good biography of Ernst Mayr in the upcoming issue of Theoretical Population Biology. The author, Eviatar Nevo, provides both a summary of Mayr’s work and distills his contributions into categories. I especially like how he explains Mayr’s understanding of evolution (which he calls Darwinism, much to my chagrin) into five sub-theories: For…

Indels, Duplications, Disease, and Speciation

Here are three interesting items that I don’t plan on blogging, but are worth linking to: Here is a news release on indel variation in humans. SNPs are so 20th century. Deletions, duplications, and insertions are the molecular polymorphisms of the future. Speaking of deletions and duplications, Nobel Intent has a good review of three…