Terra Sigillata

i-eacaad864bebf326eeb1f2c17dc02a21-tba.jpgThe relatively recent addition to ScienceBlogs, first-year medical resident, Signout, very generously tagged me with recognition as a “Thinking Blogger” on her list of “Five Blogs that Make Me Think.” This meme was started in early February by Ilker Yoldas for peers to recognize content-rich blogs. Signout was all too kind:

A neighbor here at SB, Abel Pharmboy is a pharmacologist who writes critically and eloquently about all manner of issues in drug research and development. He’s consistently both interesting and educational, and handles even conceptually dense issues with a light touch.

I know that it’s very difficult to impress a first-year medical resident so her endorsement carries that much more weight. (More about Signout can be learned from her interview with Dr Nick Genes prior to her hosting Grand Rounds in January)

The challenge, of course, is that one must then cite and tag the five blogs that make them think. Some of my faves, like Retrospectacle, Lab Cat, and Unintelligent Design, have already been tagged.

So, here are the five others that I hereby nominate whose writings qualify them as Thinking Bloggers:

1. Science and Progress by Coracle. This blog is written by a British scientist who is now “away from the bench” and overlaps with me somewhat in content on drugs and alternative therapies. I simply enjoy reading his posts – plus I think it’s cool that he calls me a “chap.”

2. Pharmagossip by Jack Friday/Insider. If you’re interested in Pharma and you want gossip, this is the place to be. The Insider has a biting sense of humor and tells it like it is about his own industry. I respect people who see the evil amongst them and point it out. Since he’s five hours ahead of me, I can always count on Pharmagossip to give me something to think about over my morning coffee.

3. Young Female Scientist by Ms PhD. Men in science tend to think that we’ve addressed the gender disparities in biomedical research but Ms PhD keeps me honest by pointing out the baloney that still goes on. She chronicles the struggle of a postdoc staking out her ground in a blunt, forceful, and introspective fashion and helps me examine how I help develop my own trainees.

4. Open Reading Frame by Dr Bill Hooker. A postdoc in Seattle but native to Australia, Hooker is the only one on the list whom I have met in the meat world and had a beer with. Bill is dedicated to the open-source publishing movement and always has insightful comments on our tribe of science. Bill’s blog has been a little sparse lately since he also blogs at 3QuarksDaily but I always welcome his views.

5. In The Pipeline by Dr Derek Lowe. One of my original inspirations for starting a blog, Derek is a pharmaceutical chemist currently between jobs who gives unique insights on how drugs are developed. Derek stimulates great comment threads, especially when it comes to discussing how academic and industrial scientists view pharmaceutical interventions in human biology.

The guidelines, as stated originally, are:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
3. Optional: Proudly display this ‘Thinking Blogger Award’ graphic (in silver or gold) with a link to the post that you wrote.


  1. #1 coracle
    April 9, 2007

    Honoured, flattered and flabbergasted!

    If you’re ever in the London/Cambridge/Herts regions, drop me a line and I’ll buy you a pint!

  2. #2 anon
    April 9, 2007

    Thanks for the interesting links! Added some to the RSS feeder

  3. #3 Abel Pharmboy
    April 9, 2007

    Coracle, I would’ve recommended you without the promise of a point but rest assured that I will take you up on the offer next time I get overseas!

  4. #4 Signout
    April 10, 2007

    >I know that it’s very difficult to impress a first-year medical resident

    You might be confusing “impress” with “awaken.” Regardless, shug, you make it look easy. Keep doing what you’re doing.

  5. #5 Insider
    April 10, 2007

    Too kind.

  6. #6 Bill
    April 10, 2007

    Too kind, indeed. I will respond en blog, but it will take me a few days — I’m snowed under at the moment.

  7. #7 Bill
    April 13, 2007

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