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Posts

April 14, 2014

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5:09 PM | Buckle Your Seatbelt or Grab Your Parachute? Turbulent Times Make “Something Else” the New Majority Career Choice in Bioscience
It isn't your imagination. The recent ups and downs in biomedical research funding have made for turbulent times in academic laboratories across the US. Jennifer Couzin-Frankel points out in her overview article to an imaginatively reported "News Focus" section last week in Science on the work force and funding crisis in biomedical science that the NIH budget doubled between 1998 and 2003 from around $14 billion to $27 billion but remained essentially flat for the next five years. The […]
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4:38 PM | Building a better cup of coffee The brave new world of coffee?...
Building a better cup of coffee The brave new world of coffee? Think genetics. UC Davis geneticist Juan Medrano is known for his research on the genetics of milk (and the effect it has on humans), but recently has turned his research efforts towards coffee. The goal is to understand the variability of coffee genes at the DNA level. This would allow Medrano and others to accurately identify genetic forces that contribute to certain flavors as well as the crucial factor of disease resistance. The […]
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3:36 PM | Mendeley for iOS7
Today we’re very pleased to announce the latest update to Mendeley for iOS.  This release brings a refined user interface, that is designed to feel at home on iOS7 and above, but still retains the familiarity and usability of the previous design.  It’s currently rolling out slowly on the app store, but should be available […]
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3:02 PM | Crowdfunding for New Stem Cell Research into MS Treatment
  On the Mendeley blog we’ve often talked about ways that crowdfunding is helping to finance some important research projects. This month’s guest post features a campaign which already surpassed its goal of raising $300,000 to enable a study into a treatment for Multiple Sclerosis, using stem cells to potentially repair the damage caused by […]
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2:34 PM | The cool professor
When I started my lab I had a very distinct idea of the type of PI I wanted to be. I had experienced some different styles and observed many others. I knew what my needs were as a graduate student and a postdoc and recognized gaps in what my mentors had provided for me. Above […]
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1:00 PM | Once upon a time – guest blog by Sue Malcolm
Making data widely available doesn’t always mean that it can be widely understood. In this guest blog post, Sue Malcolm considers the vast information we have about different species’ genomes, compared to how very few people know how to interpret this information. Malcolm is Faculty Member for F1000Prime, and Emeritus Professor of Molecular [...]
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12:30 PM | Is requiring replication statistical machismo?
A recent post of mine about why Biosphere 2 was a success stirred mixed reactions. But one of the most common negative reactions was that there was no replication in Biosphere 2, which of course EVERYBODY knows is a hallmark of good … Continue reading →
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12:00 PM | The first days of a new tenure-track faculty job
This is the season when some lucky ones preparing for new jobs in the fall. A few people have asked me what to expect, so I imagine even more are wondering. I’m writing from my own experience (starting 2.5 new faculty jobs), and yours have been different, so please do comment. What can you expect from […]
Editor's Pick
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11:34 AM | Not Good Enough.
Ed Yong is one of the English language’s better science writers. He often weighs in on issues facing academia, in addition to reporting science. One of the biggest issues facing academia right now is the pipeline problem: too many PhDs are graduating compared with the number of professorships that will ever be available for them. […]
Editor's Pick

April 13, 2014

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10:18 PM | Etymology. (Not to be confused with entomology.)
It's time I explained where the name of the blog, "q-bingo", comes from.It started last year at the q-bio conference, which is a conference focused on quantum quixotic quantitative biology. Like all fields, quantitative biology involves a certain amount of jargon and buzzwords, and certain words crop up more often than they would in everyday conversation.And where would you hear those words most often? Conferences, of course. In fact, you might start keeping track of how many times certain […]
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12:14 AM | Letting Time Fly and Remembering...
I haven't blogged for a while, sad to say.  It has been a pretty challenging semester, with my 48 "wild" freshmen, teaching "The Unity of Life" (in other words, introductory cell and molecular biology) here at the University of Puget Sound. My students are smart and capable young women and men, and it's my job to get them thinking like biologists, and to become used to the work ethic and philosophy of science courses---and more specifically, prepare them for the kinds of future courses […]

April 12, 2014

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5:12 PM | "If you wait long enough, everything changes."
“If you wait long enough, everything changes.” - Carl Sagan, Cosmos (via lawngirl)
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8:03 AM | The Stuff of Brains
That migraine I was waiting for finally struck this week. Amazingly it didn’t throw my life into disarray, because it hit me during a week I was supposed to be having ‘off’. Consequently it only spoiled a day of relaxation, … Continue reading →

April 11, 2014

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10:59 PM | Should There Be Gainful Employment for College Athletes?
College athletics, particularly the big-revenue sports of NCAA Division I football and basketball, have been in the news lately for less-than-athletic reasons. The recent push by the Northwestern football team to unionize has led to further discussion of whether college athletes* should be compensated beyond their athletic scholarships. And the University of Connecticut’s national championship team in men’s basketball comes a year after they were banned from the tournament due to […]
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7:02 PM | How's that Cooper Union Tuition Plan Working Out? Not So Well.
Recently Cooper Union, the New York City college that didn't charge tuition, decided after a series of bad financial and real estate decisions over the last decade or so (and constructing flashy buildings like that thing, below), to give up and start charging kids to learn. Founder Peter Cooper said the school should be as “free as air and water” when he helped create the institution back in 1859. Charging tuition is, of course, what almost all colleges in America do, but it […]
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3:42 PM | The Virtue of Laziness
My son, Alexey Radul, is a programmer. He taught me the importance of laziness in programming. One of his rules: Not to write the same line of code in the same program twice. If you need the same line of code in the same program, that means you should either use a loop or outsource [...]
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3:39 PM | Beer Jokes and Hat Puzzles
This is one of my favorite jokes: Three logicians walk into a bar. The waitress asks, “Do you all want beer?” The first logician answers, “I do not know.” The second logician answers, “I do not know.” The third logician answers, “Yes.” This joke reminds me of hat puzzles. In the joke each logician knows whether or [...]
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3:34 PM | How Well Do You Know Your Dice?
Each time I see John Conway he teaches me something new. At the Gathering for Gardner he decided to quiz me on how well I know a regular six-sided die. I said with some pride that the opposite sides sum up to 7. He said, “This is the first level of [...]
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3:15 PM | Weekly Webcrawl: April 11, 2014
Goats are smarter than you thought. I knew there was a reason I refused to cram for tests in college. Just the other day I discovered, through deductive reasoning, that I have a memory from before I turned two. Here’s why it’s only one of a few. Crazy allergy turned into crazy art.  
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12:00 PM | Friday recommended reads #24
“Should I be a bio major?” “What do I get out of a biology degree?” I just printed out this response to hand out when I get asked this question. Heads up: Do not trust Microsoft Excel, whatsoever, with dates. It doesn’t know how to handle them. EO Wilson writes a blog post, about spiders. […]
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11:43 AM | Friday links: Stein’s paradox, non-significant is the new significant, and more
Also this week: why modeling the process that generated the data is the least of your worries, pretty pictures of mammals, and more… From Jeremy: This will blow your mind (unless you’ve heard of it before). Say that you have … Continue reading →
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11:36 AM | This Is What Science Looks Like At NC State: Lynsey Romo
Editor’s note: This is an entry in an ongoing series of posts that we hope will highlight the diversity of researchers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The series is inspired by the This Is What A Scientist Looks Like site. This post focuses on Lynsey Romo, an assistant professor in the Department of Communication.
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9:00 AM | Evaluating knockdown within single cells – Interview
We recently indexed an article by Shin-ichiro Kojima and Gary Borisy, about a method they developed that allows cell biologists to evaluate within single cells whether their RNA interference method is working. One of the current challenges in cell and molecular biology is to determine the biological function of genes, now that we know [...]
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8:02 AM | About Data
I recently did a workshop about data with PhD students. That was great to order my thoughts and put together a lot of good resources. All material used (with lots of links) is available in GitHub: https://github.com/ibartomeus/Data. Topics range from hardcore … Continue reading →
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7:48 AM | Brain Scans: Don’t Throw Out The Baby With The Dead Salmon
Is neuro-skepticism in danger of going too far? Is it time to take a critical look at critiques of neuroscience? Martha Farah of the University of Pennsylvania says yes, in a Hastings Center Report just published: Brain Images, Babies, and Bathwater: Critiquing Critiques of Functional Neuroimaging Farah covers a broad spectrum of criticisms, ranging from […]The post Brain Scans: Don’t Throw Out The Baby With The Dead Salmon appeared first on Neuroskeptic.

Farah MJ (2014). Brain images, babies, and bathwater: critiquing critiques of functional neuroimaging., The Hastings Center report, 44 Suppl 2 30. PMID:

Citation
Editor's Pick
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12:07 AM | Community Colleges Increasingly Adding Bachelor’s Degrees
CLEARWATER, Fla. - In a high-ceilinged classroom, bright sun poking through the blinds and reflecting off the whiteboard, eight students lug heavy textbooks to their desks and prepare for this afternoon’s lesson: proteins. It’s an unusually small group for a bachelor’s degree-level course in biology. At four-year universities, classes like this are often taught in large and impersonal lecture halls, and might have hundreds of students. But this is not a university. There […]

April 10, 2014

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8:32 PM | Despite the National Labor Relations Board Ruling, We Might Never Pay College Athletes
The world’s higher education pundits have recently become very interested in the ruling by the National Labor Relations board that Northwestern University football players could organize to form a union. Does this mean that in the future college athletes will get salaries? Perhaps, but there’s a very easy (and very attractive) tactic for colleges to take to avoid paying their athletes: stop giving them athletic scholarships. The NLRB states that the players can try to form a union […]
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7:47 PM | Building robots to land on Saturn’s moons Landing an unmanned...
Building robots to land on Saturn’s moons Landing an unmanned robot on another planet can be quite a feat and can end up being quite a complex process.  Scientists want to make this process easier but also allow us to explore worlds that are currently too difficult to land on. UC Berkeley professor Alice Agogino is working with doctoral students to build what are known as tensegrity robots.  Essentially, these are robots built with a series of rods and tension wires that protect […]
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7:14 PM | Cerebrovascular physiology – article alert #73
Brain injury 360- Relationship of Vascular Wall Tension and Autoregulation Following Traumatic Brain Injury – Varsos et al. Exercise and the brain 361- Cerebral blood flow and neurovascular coupling during static exercise – Yamaguchi et al. Anesthesia and the brain 362- Impact of sevoflurane anesthesia on brain oxygenation in children younger than 2 years – […]
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6:10 PM | Three Things That Will Make a School Bad
Conventional wisdom has it that schools with high concentrations of poverty are bad. But when a team of researchers from University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education (Penn GSE) studied every third grader in the Philadelphia public schools, they found strong student achievement in some schools with high concentrations of poverty. The low-achieving schools were ones with high concentrations of homelessness and child abuse. Not only did the performance of the students […]
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