Gene Expression

Archives for November, 2006

Brighter than Isaac Newton?

In his presentation for Beyond Belief 2006 Neil deGrasse Tyson offered Isaac Newton as his candidate for the most brilliant intellectual ever. Because he is trained as a physicist Tyson can be accused of some bias, but the impact on him personally was pretty obvious, he was emotionally moved just comprehending Newton’s genius. Myself, I…

Radical Muslims are similar to moderates

Foreign Policy has a interesting selection of charts. They show that “radicals” and “moderates” in the Muslim world are not that different. Below the fold is a chart which offers two facts 1) Radical Muslims are, on average, more educated than non-radical Muslims 2) Radical Muslims are, on average, more affluent than non-radical Muslims Should…

God or tongue?

Over at Michael Brendan Dougherty’s place a debate broke out over the relative importance of language vs. religion in the Irish identity. This could perhaps be abstracted and extrapolated to many peoples and nations. In the comments Daniel Larison offered: But then I also think that Catholicism in Ireland predates the 19th century and has…

My “dialect”

I grew up in the Northeast (almost New England) and the Pacific Northwest. Here is a map of American English dialects. Via Shaitan. You can take the quiz here.

Neandertal teeth

Science Daily summarizes findings that Neandertal teeth grew at the same rate as modern humans. John Hawks applies the skeptical eye of a scientist. N matters….

Orac has a rather thorough post on eugenics, and what Richard Dawkins has recently had to say on it. Here is the dictionary.com definition of eugenics: …the study of or belief in the possibility of improving the qualities of the human species or a human population, esp. by such means as discouraging reproduction by persons…

Scientism, huh?

Update: Chris has a follow up post. Chris leaves nothing unsaid. A sample: In that talk Dawkins sounds, at times, like a 5-year old with the vocabulary and factual knowledge of a world-renowned scientist…. I find it hypocritcal and, as an atheist, more than a little embarrassing that these fundamentalist, Dawkinsian, scientistic, self-styled free thinking…

Viva proportional representation!

Interesting article which surveys the confusion in Europe right now as countries whose electoral systems are based on proportional representation are seeing a tendency by the populace to vote for parties of the far Right and far Left. This has resulted in unwieldly and unstable coalitions drawn from the ever shrinking center. Many Americans (and…

Heritability of religiosity

Below I made a reference to the heritability of religiosity. In a chat with Christer Chris that the heritability for religiosity was 0.5, and he was surprised at the result. I decided to double-check, and here is the latest paper: Estimates of the degree of genetic and environmental influences on religiousness have varied widely. This…

Kat

Samuel 17:36 – Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.