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April 16, 2012
So here's a modest proposal for film rental / streaming companies like LoveFilm and Netflix: why don't you have shareable playlists like Spotify? You see, I was reading Time Out's 100 Best Horror Films and I thought, there must be loads of these lists out there, on all kinds of criteria, for all…
April 16, 2012
As part of a workshop on Creative Commons, I'm doing a short presentation on Open Data and The Panton Principles this week to various members of our staff. I thought I'd share some of the resources I've consulted during my preparations. I'm using textmining of journal articles as a example so I'm…
April 4, 2012
Portland artist Eric Franklin spent over 1,000 hours sweating over hot glass and noble gasses to produce Embodiment, a glass skeleton filled with glowing krypton. Speaking about the process, Eric says: Every glass seal has to be perfect, and this piece contains hundreds. Everywhere one tube joins…
April 1, 2012
I am so looking forward to the talks tomorrow. Linda Buck! Sharon Long! Mary-Claire King! and more... Frontiers in the Life Sciences: a Symposium Celebrating Excellence
March 20, 2012
There is only one truly kosher sport when it comes to the Olympics: athletics. All those ancient Greeks did was run around in the dirt butt naked. It took over fifty years for them to add a second sport: more running, but in a wild twist, a race over twice the distance as before. Over the years…
March 10, 2012
The New Earth Archive is a resource network of powerful, inspiring books on climate change, sustainability, social justice, and human nature.The students ask you to vote for up to 15 of your favorite books. So pleased, Tomorrow's Table made the list! http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/808430/…
February 26, 2012
A cross posting from my Posterous space - a short imagining some implications of lab-grown meat. He was a huge man, thick forearms dotted with burns and pale scars. He spoke in a dull monotone about the unique difficulties in preparing synthetic meat. Roscoe wondered how much he weighed, and…
February 1, 2012
Dear scientists, Why do you study, the thing that you study? What is it, and why did you choose to study it over all the other possible things you could have studied? Best Frank
January 31, 2012
Applause for Plant Physiologist Helen Stafford who left the Reed College Biology Department $1M. As a woman scientist in the 1950s, Stafford was ineligible for many jobs. Reed College, not deterred by her sex, offered her a position. She went on to establish a successful career and inspired many…
January 15, 2012
Toward the end of last year, being in possession of two novelties - a girlfriend and a steady job - I decided to spend my free evenings crafting a very special piece of jewellery. I was inspired by a visit to Barometer World in the late summer, where I discovered the curious material known as storm…
November 20, 2011
Last week I had a visit from a friend of mine, who was on something of a farewell tour. After several years of planning, he'd packed in his dependable but much-begrudged corporate job, and was setting sail for Asia, to see more of the world. He's already seen much more of the world than most…
November 9, 2011
Today I'll be writing a series of blogposts from the Falling Walls conference in Berlin. Each speaker is invited to discuss the ideas, inventions, and discoveries they believe will break down walls in their field. Robert E. Horn: How Visual Language Supports Decision Making About Wicked Problems…
September 10, 2011
The Neighborhood Project is written for the full spectrum of readers, from inquisitive high school students to my professorial colleagues. I look forward to reading the reviews by the experts, which I expect to reveal the diversity of opinion that I already know exists among the cognoscenti. So far…
September 6, 2011
Photo of Vermont highway courtesy of Kyle Cornell Last week, I had my long-awaited vacation semi-ruined when, thanks to Hurricane Irene, my flight back from the West Coast was cancelled. I had to rent a car and drive across the country in a rush - not my favorite way to spend three and a half days…
August 26, 2011
Gold Cortex 16 x 20, 2010Greg Dunn I used to have a beautiful gold Japanese folding screen, which was purchased by my great-grandmother's feisty sister on a trip in the 1920s. I loved the gold patina and the surprisingly modern impact it had on my wall. At the moment, it's loaned to a friend, but…
August 19, 2011
I've opted to move this blog to my own domain at http://www.isisthescientist.com. I look forward to seeing some of you there. My sincerest thanks and best wishes to ScienceBlogs. And now, onward...
June 18, 2011
Working backwards through our four reasons to ignore evolution, we have shown that smart people don't necessary converge on the facts of the matter from different starting positions (4) and that reasoning on the basis of design benefits from knowledge about the designing process (3). Here is our…
June 4, 2011
I've been hanging out with AronRa and DPR Jones, and it looks like I might be drafted to appear on The Magic Sandwich Show on Sunday, at 8pm GMT. Tune in! That's the conference venue here in Dublin, appearing briefly in the video.
March 14, 2011
The Art of Science Learning is an NSF-funded exploration of how the arts can strengthen STEM skills and spark creativity in the 21st-Century American workforce. The project will be launched this spring with conferences in Washington, DC (at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History,…
January 11, 2011
Software company 5AM Solutions has just launched a neat little FireFox plug-in for customers of consumer genomics company 23andMe.  The idea is very simple: Download your raw data from 23andMe (or use one of the files from me or my colleagues at Genomes Unzipped); Install the plug-in from here…
January 7, 2011
As part of his Gene Week celebration over at Forbes, Matthew Herper has a provocative post titled "Why you can't have your $1000 genome". In this post I'll explain why, while Herper's pessimism is absolutely justified for genomes produced in a medical setting, I'm confident that I'll be obtaining…
December 15, 2010
Late last week I stumbled across a press release with an attention-grabbing headline ("The Causes of Common Diseases are Not Genetic Concludes a New Analysis") linking to a lengthy blog post at the Bioscience Resource Project, a website devoted to food and agriculture. The post, written by two…
December 3, 2010
A reminder to anyone who reads my other blog Genomes Unzipped that we have a reader survey underway there now, which includes some questions about genetic testing experiences and attitudes towards genetics. We're closing the survey to responses this weekend, so if you're an Unzipped reader but…
November 24, 2010
Update 30/11/10: 23andMe has extended their 80% discount until Christmas, without a need for a discount code. Personal genomics company 23andMe has made some fairly major announcements this week: a brand new chip, a new product strategy (including a monthly subscription fee), and yet another…
October 21, 2010
From the White House, to an Expo hosted by Lockheed Martin and put together by 850 leading science organizations, to over 50 satellite events across the nation, everyone from pre-schoolers to grandparents will be celebrating science this weekend at the USA Science and Engineering Expo --October 23-…
October 12, 2010
Back in June I launched a new blog, Genomes Unzipped, together with a group of colleagues and friends with expertise in various areas of genetics. At the time I made a rather cryptic comment about "planning much bigger things for the site over the next few months". Today I announced what I meant…
August 11, 2010
Let's briefly compare the Exxon and BP spills. Exxon oil estimated to have spilled into Prince William Sound: 11 million gallons BP oil estimated to have spilled into the Gulf of Mexico: 172 million gallons So when we talk about how BP's Oil Spill Bill Could Dwarf Exxon's Valdez Tab we should…
August 9, 2010
Read an interview I did with Mongabay about the Gulf Oil spill more than a week ago (apologies for the lag time). Also watch for a comparison of the Exxon Valdez and Gulf oil spills coming soon...
August 2, 2010
I'm also leaving ScienceBlogs, but it's not for the reasons some others have given. I don't think Pepsi's blog will hurt my real life reputation and besides, it's been pulled, there have been apologies - it's time to forgive. July was the first month I've gotten enough hits to get a paycheck - and…