Science Process

Category archives for Science Process

Science in Government Policy

In last week’s editorial in Science, Bruce Alberts starts with a point that I think few here would disagree with: decisions in government need to be data-driven, and based on the best science available. This point has been made before, and it’s certainly crucial, but the more crucial point is why the government currently doesn’t…

Biological manufacturing

Sometimes, when I take a step back and look at the ways that we can manipulate life, I’m astounded. We can breed mice that lack any gene we want. We can also insert new genes, and have them only express in certain types of cells or only at certain times. This is routine. We can…

The “Science and the Public” story of the year might just be Arsenic using bacteria. Certainly, Alex’s critique has been the most popular post on this blog since we started and has received quite a bit of attention from other bloggers as well as in conventional media. This might be a teachable moment in science…

What is knowledge?

Sorry for the radio silence on my part lately. My house got broken into… again… and I’m dealing with the fallout. I’m thinking about a post on knowledge, where it comes from, what it’s good for and if it matters. But before I write it, I’d like to get your input. What do you think…

If you read Alex Bradley’s guest post calling into question the claims of the recent Science paper stating the existence of microbes that can substitute arsenic for phosphorus in their DNA you might be wondering what to take away from it all, if the scientists can’t even agree on whether the study is valid or…

Bioluminescince is amazing. I have seen it first hand barely noticeably in the wake of a ship at night, from a laboratory culture in a large flask, filling a Puerto Rican bay such that every fish darting or rain drop falling glows blue, and most recently in a 2 hour light show viewed through the…

On Definitions: They Matter

Most of my favorite long-standing discussions with friends and family tend to resolve around definitions. My good friend Paul and I have had hours upon hours of discussion about the nature of the universe – he calls his perception of the order of the universe “god,” and I call myself an atheist (interestingly, that picture…

On Stress in Biomedical Research

When a paper in Molecular Cell starts with Science, this very creative human endeavor to understand the nature of the reality that exists independently of ourselves, is impossible. By “impossible,” I am not saying “very, very difficult,” although it is that, as well. you just know you’re in for a treat.

Thanks for making my point, Nature

[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com] Back in July I wrote about an editorial published in Nature about the future of science communication and what place blogs had in that future. Though I agreed with them that blogs are a great resource, I also thought that they were being a bit disingenuous about their…

Should Scientists Blog?

[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com] Considering the forum, you can probably guess my answer, but it seems the editors at Nature agree… sort of: Institutions need to recognize and to encourage such outreach explicitly — not just as a matter of routine, but specifically highlighting and promoting it at times of relevant public…