Posts

October 31, 2014

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3:00 AM | You Are Here: Around the World in 92 Minutes
By Chris Hadfield Synopsis: In You Are Here, astronaut Chris Hadfield creates a surprisingly intimate and compelling visual essay about the planet we live on, choosing the best from the thousands of photos he took on the […]
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12:15 AM | The Best of Australian Science: October 2014
It’s the end of October, 2014 and it our time to review the top highlights for this month. These would be our choice for the previous period. Efficiency and Benefits of Massage Therapy by Maya Edberg The advancements in medicine […]test The post The Best of Australian Science: October 2014 appeared first on Australian Science.
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12:00 AM | Science Book a Day Interviews Jordan D Brown
Special thanks to Jordan D Brown for answering 5 questions about his recently featured book – Crazy Concoctions: A Mad Scientist’s Guide to Messy Mixtures For more than 18 years, Jordan D. Brown has written numerous […]

October 30, 2014

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11:00 PM | #flashbackfriday Science Book a Day Interviews Scott Aaronson
This week’s #flashbackfriday is from January 27, 2014. It is an interview that we did with Scott Aaronson, who answered 5 questions about his featured book – Quantum Computing since Democritus. The book was an exploration about the maths, computer science […]
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6:25 PM | What was behind an oddly-worded dental retraction? The authors stole someone’s thesis
A dentistry journal has retracted a paper after discovering the research was lifted from dissertation work by two people unrelated to the paper authors. Here’s the notice for “Treatment of mandibular angle fracture with a 2 mm, 3-dimensional rectangular grid compression miniplates: A prospective clinical study“: It has been brought to the notice of Editorial […]
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4:03 PM | Funding crisis in basic research
The editorial in our November issue discusses the shortage of funding for basic science in the US and how the ramifications of funding shortfalls on society at large can be measured.  But the US is not alone in facing a much tightened research budget.  Read more
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3:30 PM | Will journal finally retract fraudulent paper 10 months after an official request?
Elsevier journal Chemosphere may finally retract a paper it learned contained fabricated data in January when a member of the author’s institution requested the paper be retracted. The paper has been cited at least once since the lies came to light, as we reported earlier this month. The journal contacted the relevant parties on October 29 with the […]
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2:07 PM | "No one uses IR anymore" !?!
Fellow blogger Derek Lowe normally writes a pretty good post, but on more than one occasion - especially when it is something related to polymers - he falls short. Today he wrote:"...even good old IR, which no one uses much any more..." It's not the first time he has bashed IR. Consider "Fellow chemists, raise your hands: Who's taken an IR spectrum in the last six months?" or "I know, for example, that hardly anyone takes IR spectra any more." or "It still does some things very well...but as […]
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1:30 PM | PubPeer Selections: On an “immodest title;” authors recalculate findings in response to questions
Here’s another installment of PubPeer Selections: “In my opinion, the immodest title of this paper is not supported by its contents,” writes Hilda Bastain at PubMed Commons of “Enhancing dentate gyrus function with dietary flavanols improves cognition in older adults.” A PubPeer commenter links to that and another comment on the paper. “Because of the […]
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3:10 AM | Jenny Martin Reviews Crazy Concoctions: A Mad Scientist’s Guide to Messy Mixtures
Review by Jenny Martin Crazy Concoctions: A Mad Scientist’s Guide to Messy Mixtures By Jordan D. Brown and Dr Viskus von Fickleschmutz. Illustrated by Anthony Owsley Author’s Homepage: http://www.jordandbrown.com Author’s Blog: http://www.jordandbrown.com/blog/ Want to get messy and […]
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3:00 AM | Crazy Concoctions: A Mad Scientist’s Guide to Messy Mixtures
by Jordan D. Brown (Author), Anthony Owsley (Illustrator) Synopsis: Making a mess is generally frowned upon, but if you are learning important scientific principles and creating cool science experiments, then the mess will have to be excused. Within the pages […]
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12:15 AM | A Quick Introduction to Literary Theory: Watch Animated Videos from the Open University
Just what is an author? It might seem like a silly question, and an academic dissection of the term may seem like a needlessly pedantic exercise. But the very variability of the concept means it isn’t a stable, fixed idea […]test The post A Quick Introduction to Literary Theory: Watch Animated Videos from the Open University appeared first on Australian Science.

October 29, 2014

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10:39 PM | Embargo on liberal-conservative disgust paper lifted early after Newsweek break
A message to journalists today from Cell Press, publishers of Current Biology: Cell Press has lifted the embargo on the following press release due to early reporting. The paper is publishing online in the journal Current Biology on Thursday October 30 at 12:00pm NOON EDT. Liberal or Conservative? Reactions to Disgust Are a Dead Giveaway […]
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7:53 PM | Uncovering the tangled roots of plant evolution
Using big data to understand the tree of life New work just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and GigaScience reveals important details about key transitions in the evolution of plant life on our planet, and present a huge cache of computational results, data and tools for plant biologists. In closing the Origin of Species, Darwin described a “tangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds”, and this metaphor is apt for our still tangled […]
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3:31 PM | Comparing Burger Chains and Oil Companies
According to QSRmagazine.com, the top burger chains in the US areMcDonaldsBurger KingWendy'sSonicJack in the BoxDairy QueenHardee'sCarls Jr.WhataburgerSteak and ShakeFive GuysCulver'sCheckers/Rally'sWhite CastleIn-and-OutKrystalI haven't eaten at all these chains as some of them are limited to certain portions of the country. But Krystal? I've never even heard of them.According to Petrostrategies.org, the largest oil and gas companies in the world by reserves areSaudi AramcoNational Iranian Oil […]
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3:30 PM | Structure error sinks NIH-MIT-SNU peptide paper
A mistake in structure identification has sunk a paper by researchers at the NIH, MIT, and Seoul National University in the Cell Press journal Chemistry and Biology. Here’s the notice for “Peptide-Based Inhibitors of Plk1 Polo-box Domain Containing Mono-anionic Phosphothreonine Esters and Their Pivaloyloxymethyl Prodrugs”: This article has been retracted at the request of the authors. […]
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1:30 PM | Not just lack of IRB approval: Boldt’s data were fake in 2009 study, too
We’ve commented before on the fact that we’ve noticed there’s often more to retractions whose stated reason is lack of institutional review board (IRB) approval. We can understand editors’ inclination to act as quickly as possible to issue a retraction, the scientific publishing equivalent of jailing Al Capone for tax evasion. But we appreciate it […]
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3:00 AM | Gould’s Book Of Fish
By Richard Flanagan Synopsis: Once upon a time that was called 1828, before all fishes in the sea and all living things on the land were destroyed, there was a man named William Buelow Gould, a […]
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12:15 AM | Immunology researcher wins $25,000 Young Florey Medal
Professor Carola Vinuesa from the John Curtin School of Medical Research has been awarded the inaugural CSL Young Florey Medal for her research into how the immune system produces antibodies to fight disease. “I’m very honoured and flattered,” said Professor […]test The post Immunology researcher wins $25,000 Young Florey Medal appeared first on Australian Science.
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12:00 AM | Science Book a Day Interviews Edward Dolnick
Special thanks to Edward Dolnick for answering 6 questions about his recently featured book – The Clockwork Universe: Isaac Newton, the Royal Society, and the Birth of the Modern World I grew up in a small […]

October 28, 2014

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3:30 PM | Authors retract two spectroscopy papers when follow-up results don’t match
The authors of two spectroscopy papers in Royal Society of Chemistry journals have retracted them. Here’s the notice for “Determination of silk fibroin secondary structure by terahertz time domain spectroscopy” (free, but requires sign-in) in Analytical Methods, which is almost identical to this notice in Analyst: We, the authors Chao Yan, Bin Yang and Zhicheng Yu, […]
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1:30 PM | Student denied credit, math article retracted
A math paper in the Journal of Inequalities and Applications has been retracted after it was discovered the authors had included a student’s work without acknowledging her. One of the authors, however, told us it was an honest mistake, and that the editor pushed for retraction instead of correction “to protect this journal and its impact factor.” […]
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4:10 AM | 1000 Likes on Science Book a Day!
Woot! The last ‘like’ for The Clockwork Universe: Isaac Newton, the Royal Society, and the Birth of the Modern World by Plant Electrician took us over the line with 1000 likes for the many books and […]
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3:00 AM | The Clockwork Universe: Isaac Newton, the Royal Society, and the Birth of the Modern World
By Edward Dolnick Synopsis: New York Times bestselling author Edward Dolnick brings to light the true story of one of the most pivotal moments in modern intellectual history—when a group of strange, tormented geniuses invented science as […]
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12:15 AM | New research centre set to secure food for the future
A research centre exploring new technologies for improving crop yields to secure food supply has been launched at the Research School of Biology. The Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence (CoE) for Translational Photosynthesis seeks to increase yields of […]test The post New research centre set to secure food for the future appeared first on Australian Science.
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12:00 AM | 2015 Finalists for the AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize in the Children’s Science Book Categories
Last week we featured the 2015 Finalists for the AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize in the Young Adult Category and on Friday the 24th of October, the finalists for the kids categories – Children’s Science Picture Books, Middle Grades […]

October 27, 2014

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3:30 PM | Quantum physics paper pulled for “serious theoretical errors,” notice accidentally paywalled
A paper on photonic quantum walks has been retracted over a theoretical disagreement. The notice is also paywalled, which the editorial director has assured us is a mistake that is being corrected. We sent the COPE guidelines on retraction to the American Physical Society, which publishes Physical Review Letters. Editorial director Dan Kulp told us the […]
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1:30 PM | “Our real intention was to emphasize, not plagiarize”
This one’s not a retraction, but rather a back and forth of letters to the editor concerning accusations of plagiarism. Dentists Bryan and Paul Jacobs, a father and son team, wrote a paper describing a novel surgical technique in March 2013. In October 2013, several Croatian dentists published their own paper using the technique. A […]
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11:20 AM | Guest Blog: The 2014 Ebola Epidemic: Approaches and resources to slow the spread of infection
The Ebola pandemic presents one of the most terrifying world health crises in modern times, with devastating consequences in Western Africa [as this goes to press there are now over 10,000 infections and almost 5,000 deaths]. There is a vast amount of data on this crisis available in rapidly published articles and on the internet (check out PLOS Currents: Outbreaks in particular), including past and current numbers of infected; death and infection rates; predicted outbreak expansion; number of […]
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3:00 AM | Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End
By Atul Gawande Synopsis: In Being Mortal, bestselling author Atul Gawande tackles the hardest challenge of his profession: how medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending Medicine has triumphed in modern […]
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