Gene Expression

Archives for October, 2008

Where is Obama overperforming?

There has been a lot of talk of Barack Obama “expanding the map” this cycle for the Democrats. In mid-September when John McCain was at his polling-peak many were assuming that had just been a pipe-dream, and that the traditional Democratic strategy of winning big blue states was back in play. But with the Obama…

Indian American ethnicity

There was a comment below on Indian American ethnicity in terms of proportion. By “ethnicity,” I mean the dominant language-based groups which serve as the organizing unit of many Indian states. The usual figures I see quoted are that 50% of Indian Americans are Gujarati, 25% Punjabi, with the balance a host of other groups…

Rise of the zombies?

William Saletan has an article out on the tendency for many Americans today to always be “hooked in” to technology through mobile devices (cell phones, iPods, etc.). I recall a woman loudly talking about her boyfriend leaving her, and the consequent emotional devastation, in front of me in the supermarket checkout line once. Only after…

Manjoo on Ubuntu

Linux Is Making Me Insane: Grappling with Ubuntu, the free, open-source operating system. I have Ubuntu on my PC through a dual-boot. I also purchased a USB wireless card which was guaranteed to be compatible with Ubuntu plug-and-play. It does work…80% of the time. The problem is that it “drops” the connection every half hour…

Obviously the most prominent Indian American politician today is Bobby Jindal, the governor of Louisiana. But Jindal is not very representative of Indian Americans: …Additionally, there are also industry-wide Indian American groupings including the Asian American Hotel Owners Association and the Association of American Physicians of Indian Origin. Despite being heavily religious and having the…

Finns as European outliers

Dienekes points to another paper on European population substructure, Genome-Wide Analysis of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms Uncovers Population Structure in Northern Europe: In this study, we analysed almost 250,000 SNPs from a total of 945 samples from Eastern and Western Finland, Sweden, Northern Germany and Great Britain complemented with HapMap data. Small but statistically significant differences…

Religion is adaptive; religion is not

John Wilkins points me to a piece by Pascal Boyer,* Being human: Religion: Bound to believe?: So is religion an adaptation or a by-product of our evolution? Perhaps one day we will find compelling evidence that a capacity for religious thoughts, rather than ‘religion’ in the modern form of socio-political institutions, contributed to fitness in…

David’s penultimate post on Sewall Wright, Notes on Sewall Wright: The Shifting Balance Theory – Part 1: Two catch-phrases indissolubly linked with Sewall Wright are the adaptive landscape, and the shifting balance. In preparing my note on Wright’s concept of the adaptive landscape I was surprised to discover that Wright himself seldom if ever used…

DonorsChoose Update

As you can see to the left Gene Expression hasn’t raised that much money this year. That’s not so hot, but, some of the other ScienceBloggers have raised a bunch, so that’s heartening. I also wanted to add that Seed will be “padding” our contributions this year, but right now the amount that Seed is…

The death of godless Europe?

Most of you know that Europe (like Japan and South Korea) has very low fertility; below replacement even. One of the main explanations is that with the decline in religiosity it naturally follows that fertility will decline (the psychological or sociological proximate models vary). Atheism kills with its pessimism. On first blush I think this…