October 24, 2014

12:56 PM | Protein folding probably requires the assistance of Frigg
The Discovery Institute doesn’t understand the protein folding problem. I mean that literally: they don’t understand the problem. Scientists don’t know the answer, but they have a clear understanding of the problem. PNAS published a “Perspective” article, “The Nature of Protein Folding Pathways,” by S. Walter Englander and Leland Mayne. Unsurprisingly, they try to approach…
11:22 AM | Friday Cephalopod: Alien beauty
No summary available for this post.

October 23, 2014

4:00 PM | Was ein Mensch glaubt, beeinflusst, was er tut
Manchen wird diese Überschrift vielleicht trivial vorkommen, andere wiederum, gerade, wenn von „glauben“ im religiösen Sinne die Rede ist, werden diese Behauptung vehement bestreiten. Die These, daß das Verhalten eines Menschen davon beeinflusst wird, was er glaubt, also für wahr hält (und nicht nur für wahrscheinlich, möglich, plausibel oder wünschenswert!), steht auch im Zentrum allen…
12:20 PM | A scientific visualization of the importance of race
The image below is a phylogram, illustrating the degree of variation in a sequence of mitochondrial DNA. The concept is fairly simple: if two DNA samples are from individuals that are evolutionarily distant from one another, they’ll have accumulated more differences in their mitochondrial DNA, and will be drawn farther apart from one another. If…
9:28 AM | Islamofobie & Microaggressie – Komt een moslimvrouw bij…
Stelt u zich even voor. U bent moslim. En u belandt in de volgende situaties.

October 22, 2014

9:47 PM | Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 – what really happened?
Three months after the loss of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over Ukraine the world is no wiser about what, and who, caused this crash. Well, we have the preliminary report but this only confirmed the bleeding obvious (“the aircraft was penetrated by a … Continue reading →
2:14 PM | Luz blanca
Por Martín Bonfil OliveraDirección General de Divulgación de la Ciencia, UNAMPublicado en Milenio Diario, 22 de octubre  de 2014En una hoguera, una antorcha o una vela, la combustión del los compuestos de carbono e hidrógeno (celulosa de la madera, parafina) libera energía en forma de calor, principalmente, y también de luz: fotones. Es una forma de obtener iluminación, pero de forma muy ineficiente, y con humo y […]
1:45 AM | Fluoridation – a racist conspiracy?
Political activists campaigning on health issues often resort to scaremongering. This can be dangerous – especially when their stories have no real basis but rely on selective and distorted information. Paul Connett’s Fluoride Action Network (FAN) often resorts to this sort of scaremongering. Now … Continue reading →

October 21, 2014

7:31 PM | Death at sea: Syrian migrants film their perilous voyage to Europe
Read and watch the stories behind the statistics on the site of The Guardian: Moaaz, Majd, Rasha, Kinan and Khalid – who fled war-torn Syria to embark on a perilous trip to reach Europe.
4:59 PM | Stem cell treatment of spinal cord injuries
I have to admit that my first response to these reports out of Britain that stem cells had been successfully used to repair a complete spinal cord transection was skepticism — incredulity even. They’re reporting that a man with a completely severed spinal cord at level T10-T11 is able to walk again! The Guardian gushes!…
3:57 AM | Curiosity’s historic comet photo
Photo Credit: Curiosity on Mars – NASA Rover Opportunity Views Comet Near Mars. According to NASA: NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity captured images of a comet passing much closer to Mars than any previous known comet flyby of Earth or Mars. … Continue reading →
1:50 AM | Mary’s Monday Metazoan: Zombies!
Browse this list of images…all of them of real, live, genuine zombified organisms. Just in time for Halloween!

October 20, 2014

8:53 PM | Religion matters more than education when it comes to creationist beliefs
The USA is a conundrum when it comes to creationist beliefs. While the US comes about average in high-school science education results, staggering numbers of American adults are not only creationists but young earth creationists - believing that the earth is a mere 6,000 years old.Now, there's quite a lot of research to suggest that this is due to widespread fundamentalist Christian beliefs. But quite how that manifests is unclear. Are fundamentalists generally ignorant of science - or is it […]
6:44 PM | What, this is a thing?
A paper that made extravagant weight loss claims for green coffee beans has been retracted. This study had been touted by Dr Oz, of course — no fraud is to ludicrous for him — and rebutted by Scott Gavura, and I’m generally suspicious of any dietary supplement that promises weight loss without reducing calories or…
5:11 PM | #TrueStoryASA Social Experiment: Exposing racial profiling
A revealing social experiment on racial profiling.
4:00 PM | Demnächst: Science Slams in Wuppertal, Bonn und Bochum
1. Kommenden Donnerstag, am 23.10., trete ich auf bei einem Science Slam in der Färberei in Wuppertal. Ort: Färberei in Wuppertal, Peter-Hansen-Platz 1,  42275 Wuppertal. Beginn: 20:15 Uhr. Hier ein Link mit den Details.   2. Nächste Woche Dienstag, am 28.10,  trete ich auf bei einem Science Slam im Pantheon Theater in Bonn. Ort: Pantheon Theater, Bundeskanzlerplatz 2-10,…

October 19, 2014

12:42 AM | When science deniers turn to science
Cartoon by Joe Heller, Readers no doubt recognise this situation. It’s a pretty blatant form of science denial. Division of science and into pro and anti forms –  such as pro-fluoridation and anti-fluoridation science –  is just another form of … Continue reading →

October 17, 2014

1:02 PM | Friday Cephalopod: UNFOLLOW
I just learned that the Blogess has “giant squid phobia”. Several people are aware of my severe giant squid phobia and lovingly (?) sent me this video of a giant squid attacking a Greenpeace submarine, and that’s unsettling enough, but WHY IS THERE ANOTHER SQUID BEHIND IT SPITTING OUT FIRE?  Is that a real thing?  Because I…

October 16, 2014

7:00 PM | WTF Forensik – Zahnseide bei der Aufklärung von Sexualdelikten
 Warnung: in dieser Reihe stelle ich schräge, drastische, extreme oder auf andere Weise merkwürdige Studien und Fallberichte vor, die die Forensischen Wissenschaften in ihrer ganzen Breite und Vielseitigkeit portraitieren sollen, die aber in ihrer Thematik und/oder den beigefügten Abbildungen nicht für alle LeserInnen geeignet sind und obgleich ich mich stets bemühen werde, nicht ins Sensationalistische…
2:21 PM | NISIS Autumn School |The religious/secular divide in the Muslim world
From Tuesday 21 until Friday 24 October 2014, NISIS organises its fifth Autumn School. This year's theme is: "The religious/secular divide in the Muslim world."

October 15, 2014

9:30 PM | Fluoride debate: Second response to Rita Barnett-Rose – Daniel Ryan
Here is Daniel Ryan’s second response to Rita Barnett-Rose’s defence of here unpublished paper “Compulsory water fluoridation: Justifiable public health benefit or human experimental research without informed consent“. That defence was posted yesterday at Fluoride debate: Response to Daniel Ryan’s critique – … Continue reading →
9:16 PM | El microscopio químico
Por Martín Bonfil OliveraDirección General de Divulgación de la Ciencia, UNAMPublicado en Milenio Diario, 15 de octubre  de 2014Betzig, Moerner y HellPermítame, estimado lector (o lectora), continuar con el tema de los premios Nobel de este año.La semana pasada mi querido amigo Yonathan Amador, con quien colaboro semanalmente hablando de ciencia en su programa de radio Ecléctico (CódigoCDMX, radio por internet) me hizo una […]

October 14, 2014

9:30 PM | Are religious pictures more powerful than words?
Subliminal priming is a classic way to study how religion might affect attitudes and behaviour. But previous studies have had mixed results - sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. In the last post, I described a study which found that using words to prime Muslims had little effect, but subtly playing the call to prayer did. Maybe Muslims are different from Christians? Or maybe there is something fundamental being revealed here.Take a look at some studies done recently by Sarah Cavrak & […]
9:15 PM | Fluoride debate: Response to Daniel Ryan’s critique – Rita Bartlett-Rose
Rita Barnett-Rose, author of “Compulsory water fluoridation: Justifiable public health benefit or human experimental research without informed consent” has replied to Daniel Ryan’s critique of her paper. Daniel’s critique was posted yesterday at Fluoride debate: A response to Rita Barnett-Rose – Daniel Ryan. … Continue reading →
10:29 AM | The Trail of the Yezidis
Guest Author: Eszter Spat   Already before the recent war in Iraq and Syria there appeared to be an increased interest in Yezidis in the last decades and one wonders how that is related...

October 13, 2014

9:00 PM | Fluoride debate: A response to Rita Barnett-Rose – Daniel Ryan
Daniel Ryan President of the Making Sense of Fluoride group responded to the scientific claims made in Rita Barnett-Rose’s unpublished paper “Compulsory water fluoridation: Justifiable public health benefit or human experimental research without informed consent“. That section of Rita’s paper was … Continue reading →
4:54 PM | Mary’s Monday Metazoan: Sexy frog
I would be irresistible to the ladies if only I had bright blue inflatable throat sacs, like Hoplobatrachus tigerinus.

October 12, 2014

9:07 PM | Fluoride debate: The scientific evidence against fluoridation – Rita F. Barnett
Recently an unpublished paper by Rita F. Barnett, an associated professor of Legal Research and Writing at Chapman University, was heavily promoted by Paul Connett’s Fluoride Action Network and associated social media groups. Although basically a legal paper it did have … Continue reading →
2:19 PM | Go away, cold fusion
A guy named Andrea Rossi has been promoting this device call the E-Cat that produces huge amounts of energy by nuclear fusion: specifically, that it fuses hydrogen and nickel to produce copper and energy. And now there is a claim that this amazing result has been verified, in a remarkably gushing and credulous review. I…

October 10, 2014

3:59 PM | Another cancer quack
That atavistic cancer hypothesis is actually fueling the work of quacks: Orac has been getting threats from a Frank Arguello, who runs a crank cancer mill called “Atavistic Chemotherapy”. It’s amazing stuff. It goes on and on about how cancer represents a reversion to the old cell types of single-celled organisms, and how modern chemotherapy…
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