Gene Expression

Razib Khan

The luck of the Irish

Henry Louis Gates Jr. is looking for his male Irish forebear using genetics: Well, it turns out that the men sharing that Ui Neill haplotype tended to have certain surnames. If we use those surnames, we narrow the number of possibilities in Allegany and Hampshire counties to 178 men born between 1800 and 1830 bearing…

We be symbolic

The Evolution Of Symbolic Language by Terrence Deacon and Ursula Goodenough. Deacon’s The Symbolic Species: The Co-Evolution of Language and the Brain is a book I liked a great deal, though in hindsight I don’t think I had the background to appreciate it in any depth (nor do I now).

Evolutionary history reversible

At least in this case, Troglomorphism, trichobothriotaxy and typhlochactid phylogeny (Scorpiones, Chactoidea): more evidence that troglobitism is not an evolutionary dead-end: The scorpion family Typhlochactidae Mitchell, 1971 is endemic to eastern Mexico and exclusively troglomorphic. Six of the nine species in the family are hypogean (troglobitic), morphologically specialized for life in the cave environment, whereas…

A few weeks ago I commented on the paper about the origin of the small dog phenotype in the Middle East. Now The New York Times has an article on a newer paper, New Finding Puts Origins Of Dogs in Middle East. Here’s the conclusion: Dog domestication and human settlement occurred at the same time,…

A week ago I observed that commenting was being transformed with the spread of Disqus and Echo. The Big Money has now introduced Echo: The comments themselves are also more interactive. Any of your postings can be shared with your friends on Facebook, followers on Twitter, or any of your connections on the other supported…

South Park

14th season begins tonight. The website. You can usually get the episode a bit earlier at Allabout-SP.net.

A little bit of the Others in Us

Dienekes has reposted some of the abstracts from the meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists. This one caught my eye,

Diversity in the tech world

A few weeks ago I had dinner and drinks with an old friend who works for the firm which invented the x86 series of microprocessors. He’s doing well financially right now, and was very bullish on his firm. More specifically it seems that they’re on a hiring binge (he knows because he’s been on hiring…

You have no privacy

How Privacy Vanishes Online. Pretty banal actually. Social networking has really changed things. As I’ve said before I’m fascinated by the large number of people who, even those who want to be anonymous, enter in their real email addresses when leaving a comment. There seems a default “trust unless you shouldn’t trust” setting, so we…

Over the past week I’ve been asked via email and on message boards about about David Shenk’s new book, The Genius in All of Us: Why Everything You’ve Been Told About Genetics, Talent, and IQ Is Wrong. Since I haven’t read the book I can’t really comment, but I did finally listen to Will Wilkinson’s…