Posts

October 10, 2014

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2:52 PM | Whoa…ScienceOnline has gone and died
They announced their decision to shut down the organization and cancel future conferences yesterday. This is sad news — it has always been an innovative, interesting event, but they faced a terrible hit when one of their founders, Bora Zivkovic, was slammed with charges of harassing women, and they’ve been struggling to get donations to…
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12:16 PM | Friday Cephalopod: Always adorable
Watch. It’s very soothing.

October 09, 2014

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3:30 PM | Wie man die Fäulnis einer Leiche mißt
 Es kommt immer wieder vor, daß die Leichen unbemerkt verstorbener Menschen erst einmal eine Weile am Sterbeort liegen, bevor sie entdeckt werden. Gerade in der warmen Jahreszeit zeigen solche Leichen dann häufig mehr oder weniger deutliche Anzeichen von Fäulnis*. Wenn sich die Fäulnisveränderungen bereits auf das Gesicht erstrecken (typischerweise sieht man erste Anzeichen im Unterbauchbereich),…
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9:02 AM | Another legal defeat for NZ anti-fluoridation activists
The NZ High Court has thrown out the appeal from an anti-fluoride group against the decision rejecting their request for a decision against community water fluoridation. The original case claimed that fluoridation violated human rights legislation and was beyond the … Continue reading →
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9:00 AM | Introductie tot Islamitische Staat: Ontstaan, Organisatie en Ideologie
Een introductie op het ontstaan, de structuur en de ideologie van Islamitische Staat.

October 08, 2014

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10:21 PM | La semana Nobel
Por Martín Bonfil OliveraDirección General de Divulgación de la Ciencia, UNAMPublicado en Milenio Diario, 8 de octubre  de 2014Este año la semana Nobel empezó temprano: no amanecía todavía el lunes (en México) y ya se estaba dando el anuncio del premio de fisiología o medicina.La brevedad de este espacio no me permitirá hablar del premio Nobel de física, que ha sido ya anunciado al escribir estas […]
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4:00 PM | Forensische RNA-Analytik auf Luxemburgisch
Ein Leser aus Luxemburg hat mich darauf aufmerksam gemacht, daß auf der Seite von RTL.lu ein Artikel über forensische RNA-Analytik erschienen ist, in dem ich als Experte zitiert werde. Offenbar handelt es sich dabei um eine Adaption des Beitrags aus dem Deutschlandfunk von neulich. Wenn ich das so zu lesen versuche, muß ich zugeben: ich finde…
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4:00 PM | Forensische RNA-Analytik International
Ein Leser aus Luxemburg hat mich darauf aufmerksam gemacht, daß auf der Seite von RTL.lu ein Artikel über forensische RNA-Analytik erschienen ist, in dem ich als Experte zitiert werde. Offenbar handelt es sich dabei um eine Adaption des Beitrags aus dem Deutschlandfunk von neulich. Wenn ich das so zu lesen versuche, muß ich zugeben: ich finde…

October 07, 2014

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10:56 PM | Anti-fluoridation propagandists promoting shonky “review”
The anti-fluoridation internet propaganda machine is currently promoting a shonky paper – partly in their attempts to discredit the Royal Society of NZ Review. The substitute they offer was promoted  by them earlier this years and is being recycled. So I … Continue reading →
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12:29 AM | Mary’s Monday Metazoan: Stridulator
No summary available for this post.

October 06, 2014

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10:11 PM | How to change your Mind – and why it is good for you
It’s funny how we all recognise confirmation bias in others but a loath to see it in ourselves. Yet it is only human – and in fact the desire to fit new evidence into existing models in our mind does … Continue reading →
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1:50 AM | Ojos que no ven… celular que sí
Vamos a ver cómo podemos probar si funciona nuestro control remoto

October 05, 2014

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12:47 AM | The science and politics of climate change
Michael Mann: The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars – TAM 2013. Have a look at this video for an excellent description of the history and science of climate change. It’s presented by one of the central figures. Michael Mann … Continue reading →

October 04, 2014

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2:28 PM | Dang good paper
All right, Larry Moran, why did you post about this paper now? I finished the unit on the origins of life in my cell biology class over a week ago, and this summary of the metabolism first model of abiogenesis would have been very helpful. I first gave them a review of redox reactions in…
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2:08 PM | Ethisch voedsel – Dierendag en Offerfeest
Het is Dierendag én Offerfeest! Die combinatie leefde al enkele weken of zelfs maanden voor de vierde oktober onder moslims met wie ik contact heb. Met een mengeling van humor en ow-wat-gaan-we-nu-weer-krijgen-verzuchtingen werd er...
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1:34 PM | Dembski: Still wrong
William Dembski spoke at the University of Chicago in August, and a video of the talk is available. I tried to watch it, I really did, but I ended up skipping through most of it (one of the advantages of seeing it on youtube!). Here’s my rather stream-of-consciousness monolog as I was flicking like a…

October 03, 2014

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12:48 PM | Friday Cephalopod: Goin’ fishing
Watch the fishing lure action right here — also pay attention to the closeups that reveal how transparent Grimalditeuthis is. It would be so cool to be able to see our own guts like that.

October 02, 2014

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6:00 AM | Kurz notiert: Gamer sind die besseren RNA-Designer
So mancher schätzt den Beitrag, den Gamer, so nennt man Personen, die viel und leidenschaftlich zumeist Video-Spiele spielen, für die Gesellschaft leisten, als eher überschaubar ein und faßt stundenlanges Herumdrücken auf vage bananenförmigen Plastikgriffen und verbissenes Herumschubsen hochgezüchteter Computermäuse als geist- und niveaulose Zeitverschwendung auf. Kürzlich jedoch stellte sich heraus, daß Gamer besser als jeder…
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1:14 AM | Science and belief
As long as it agrees with, or can be interpreted to agree with, one’s beliefs.  
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12:35 AM | Botanical Wednesday: What’s with this peculiar craze?
Allspice, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon — they don’t actually look all that appetizing.

October 01, 2014

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6:38 PM | Pensar el periodismo científico
Por Martín Bonfil OliveraDirección General de Divulgación de la Ciencia, UNAMPublicado en Milenio Diario, 1 de octubre  de 2014Inauguración del SeminarioPocas cosas influyen tanto en las sociedades contemporáneas como la ciencia y la tecnología. Carl Sagan, el famoso astrónomo y divulgador científico, escribió en su libro El mundo y sus demonios: “Hemos organizado una civilización global en la que […]
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4:41 PM | Darwin, sexist asshat
That same bozo who sent me the Hitler quote sent me another image in reply: Fair enough. Darwin got a lot of things wrong. I’m actually going to be lecturing my intro biology students on where Darwin screwed up in a few weeks, focusing mainly on his bad genetics, but I’ll toss that quote into…
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1:42 AM | September ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
PLEASE NOTE: Sitemeter is playing up again making it impossible to automatically get the stats for some blogs – those I list below. Maybe more bloggers will shift to StatCounter or other counter. No stats could be found for these blogs: Works … Continue reading →

September 29, 2014

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12:14 PM | Not a racist or a sexist, no sir, certainly not!
I have been down the rabbit hole. I got sucked down into a prolonged web search on the matter of pre-WWII eugenics, which is more than a little squicky, but was fascinated to discover a thriving community of correspondents which reminded me precisely of the various flavors of blog commenters today — that is, opinionated,…
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10:57 AM | Mary’s Monday Metazoan: Don’t tell the SyFy Channel!
It’s the Kinabalu Giant Red Leech of Borneo! This foot long beast isn’t satisfied with merely sucking blood, it swallows its prey whole.
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4:13 AM | Peer review of an anti-fluoride “peer review”
In  Anti-fluoride activists define kangaroo court as “independent” I promised to review the anti-fluoridationist “International Peer Review.” This is Anti-fluoride  critique of the recent review Health Effects of Water Fluoridation: a Review of the Scientific Evidence produced by the Royal Society of NZ together with the Office … Continue reading →

September 28, 2014

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6:45 PM | The Twitter Creationist Time Machine!
It’s reassuring to know that it’s not just other atheists who hate me, but that I also still piss off the creationists. In addition to the mob of atheist dudebros howling at my door, there has been a recent resurgence of creationist loonietarianism in my email. It seems to have been triggered by a Seventh…
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11:10 AM | ‘Stewards of Creation’ – Religion and the environment
The Prophet Muhammad's love for nature is extended by some Muslim activists to emphasize environmental stewardship as a particular role and responsibility bestowed upon humanity.
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2:00 AM | The information war – The NZ Listener takes up arms
First – have a look at this satirical programme from Germany. It has English captions but is worth watching a few times for the subtleties. I have commented before about the information war going on around the Ukrainian conflict. It … Continue reading →

September 27, 2014

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4:57 PM | Myth: multicellular life arose in the Cambrian
Creationists are much vested in the idea of “suddenly” — they love the idea of inserting the fingersnap of God into every abrupt transition. This is why they are infatuated with the Big Bang and the Cambrian Explosion, and why they flirted with the idea of renaming “Intelligent Design” to “Sudden Origins” theory. If something…
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