Earlier this month, I wrote an editorial based on the release of a study that revealed stark differences between the general public and scientists on science-related issues. It received a lot of attention, garnering comments and sparking debate. Here are a few of the best comments and reaction to them.
For laboratory professionals, Pittcon is like a delayed Christmas. There is waiting, planning and anxiety in the weeks leading up to the conference, only to culminate in excitement and joy for a few days.
If you are in the market for laboratory equipment or simply looking to see the latest innovations, there is no better venue than the Pittcon exposition. With more than 900 companies from 30 countries, you have a once-a-year opportunity to participate in live product demos, troubleshoot your critical issues with technical experts, attend product seminars and compare and evaluate equipment — all in one place.
This is real life—it’s not a science fiction movie. We’re not living in the highly evolved world of Dr. Dave Bowman and his murderous computer HAL 9000, nor are we living in James Cameron’s version of 2029 with muscular cyborgs and time travel capabilities. We live in the year 2015, where basic to advanced AI has thus far influenced a variety of fields—for the better.
It’s that time of the year again. You probably think I mean Christmas, but as a virologist the sight of glitter, fairy lights and mounting pine trees immediately makes me think of the flu season. And if there’s one thing that can ruin your family’s Christmas, it’s the arrival of that unwanted guest. There are lots of myths around about flu. So, here’s a quick guide to some common knowledge that actually turns out to be wrong.
The media is often accused of being perpetrators of bad news—that is, it takes every opportunity to report negative news. Take your local news channel, for example. I’d bet that on any given night, negative news reports outweigh positive reports by a ratio of 10:1. But, with the year coming to a close, I want to take time to highlight some of the positive strides society, specifically women in science, have made in 2014.
The fear of needles is recognized in medical literature as needle phobia, or trypanophobia. It has also been recognized in the research community recently as an area that needs improvement, with several companies and universities undertaking studies that seemingly portray a "death to needles" attitude.
We’re now at the point where we understand the value of diversity and the potential knowledge we can gain for ourselves by examining the capabilities of those animals who have similar capabilities to us. How can we not work to that end?
GE, Panasonic, Toshiba and Fujitsu—one can easily point out the similarities between these companies. They have long been recognized and heralded for their work in the electronics and semiconductor industry. However, given their recent investments, it’s possible that this editorial written 20 years down the road may reflect on these companies as agricultural powerhouses instead.
There are numerous opposing viewpoints that have led to arguments, conflicts and even wars over the past millennia. Personal opinions on abortion, creationism, global warming, gun control, UFOs, immigration and that giant of all topics—religion—have created a polarized world with armed camps on each side supporting two or more opposing viewpoints. Not the least of these viewpoints is animal research.
While researchers continue to make gains against malaria and its effects with new approaches, including genetically engineered bacteria (at the Johns Hopkins Malaria Research Institute), new challenges limit their overall effectiveness. Multiple approaches, as are being done now, will likely be the continuing way to combat malaria for the foreseeable future.
SPARK Movement, a girls advocacy group, published a report in March 2014 that provided stats on all 445 Google Doodles celebrating individuals from 2010 to 2013. Of the 445, an overwhelming 357 of them were men—with women accounting for just 77 Doodles. What SPARK didn’t know at the time was that Google had already internally acknowledged they had a Doodle problem, and were doing something about it.
Researchers recently announced they had developed a new polymer class by using a computational chemistry hybrid approach to accelerate the discovery process.It is very encouraging to see researchers from the U.S., Europe and the Middle East work together on a global research project, using state-of-the-art processes and systems, along with traditional bench chemistry to develop something really different.
Recently Mother Jones published an article on the dangers of food laced with tiny metal oxide particles. The article, however, is laced with errors and misinformation.
Each successive S&T-centric era comes on the heels of previous S&T eras and builds upon those previous technologies. Each era also builds upon a specific human need of the time, and in the process ends up creating specific problems, including environmental pollution, neurobiological diseases and an expanding need for skilled scientists and engineers.