Archives for May, 2011

Nadia El-Awady, who you’ll recall as a science writer in Egypt who helped chronicle the revolution from Tahrir Square (she’s also organizing this year’s World Conference of Science Journalists in Doha), tried an experiment: I experimented last week. I took off my hijab – the headscarf many Muslim women wear to cover their hair. I…

The importance of being median

Peter Freed wants to you to know that Jonah Lehrer is Not a Neuroscientist. Lehrer doesn’t claim to be, of course. He’s a journalist and science writer who covers developments in neuroscience, and a good one at that. Freed is concerned about how Lehrer handled a recent study on “the wisdom of crowds” in a…

Zack Kopplin Rocks

In the video above, you can see my creation/evolution hero of the last school year. Zack Kopplin is a Louisiana high school senior (heading to Rice University next fall) who decided to fight the misnamed Louisiana Science Education Act. That bill, passed in 2008, opens the door to creationist materials in science classrooms. It is…

Ugh

Having a cold isn’t as much fun as you’d think. Back to regular blogging shortly. If you haven’t registered for SkeptiCal ’11 yet, there’s still time before Sunday.

Biopunks and cultural change

Razib Khan has a good response to my post yesterday about biopunks, including this: I obviously support this movement and its intents (I’ve met a few of the people who are prominent in it). But we need to keep perspective here. This will probably be analogous to the free or open source software movement; the…

On DNA Day, 23 and Me had a sale on their personal genomics service. They’d do their standard scan of your genome for free, as long as you paid for a year’s worth of their online subscription service. A much smaller version of that same genome survey would have cost you a thousand dollars or…

Scientists and Spirituality

Reviewing Elaine Howard Ecklund’s Science vs. Religion for the Washington Post last May, I noted: Rice University sociologist Elaine Ecklund offers a fresh perspective on this debate in “Science vs. Religion.” Rather than offering another polemic, she builds on a detailed survey of almost 1,700 scientists at elite American research universities — the most comprehensive…

Sexism survived the rapture

I mentioned before that last weekend I was going to a post-Rapture party/conference thrown by local atheists, and I did, and it had its definite moments. I wasn’t there on Rapture day itself (I was at Maker Faire then), but the crowd the following Sunday was undiminished, and the talks were generally good (a low…

Kinetic Steam at Work

Caroline Crocker taught creationism in some DC-area colleges, and the colleges didn’t renew her contract, so she was put on wingnut welfare with a gig at the ID creationist IDEA center. There, she tells us, she helped create “safe houses” and fake identities so students could secretly come “out of the closet.”