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My Hype Cycle

The hype cycle characterizes the over-excitement and subsequent disappointment with new technologies. I expanded this a bit to include research and social trends in science which seem prevalent nowadays. Any views represented in this hype cycle diagram are my own, and in no way represent the  views of my employers, family, friends, neighbors, greengrocer, auto […]

Black SNP Friday

Personal genetics companies are fitting in well with the post-Thanksgiving Day consumer frenzy in the US. Well, maybe not so much of a frenzy in this slow economy, more like mild agitation. 23&me are having a sale, your genotype for $99 (+ 1 year subscription, etc, comes out to $159). You can get your genotype, […]

Grading on a Transient Loop

Every time I go through exam statistics of one of my classes, I cannot help thinking of this particular gem from Third Rock from the Sun:

Grant Writing Boot Camp

Proposal Sergeant: On your feet you hackers! Up, up up up up! What do you think this place is, one of your conferences where you can sleep in late and grab a cafe-latte on your way to the keynote lecture? NO IT IS NOT! This is a grant writing boot camp! We’re up bright and […]

Best Rally Sign Ever

This made it to the front page of Reddit. Hilarious…


Warning: somewhat NSFW language.

IgNobel Slides

The IgNobel prizes have been announced last week. From Wikipedia: “The Ig Nobel Prizes are an American parody of the Nobel Prizes and are given each year in early October for ten achievements that ‘first make people laugh, and then make them think.’ Organized by the scientific humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research (AIR), they […]

Changing directions

For some reason, this reminds me a lot of the way some of my research has been going recently….

Goat breath causes aphids to drop to the ground

Some headlines just write themselves… It has been known for some time that an approaching large herbivore causes aphids to abandon ship …err plant. Makes sense since, after all, there’s not much of a point in staying on the particular bit of shrubbery that will be consumed, lock, stalk and barrel by a ravenous forager. […]

And the best dinosaur is…

Not only the funniest, but also the best-informed rant on dinosaurs I have ever heard. OK, I only heard this one, but it cracked me up. NSFW language.

Science as Middle-Earth

From Abstruse Goose. I like it that Biology is in Mirkwood, and that Bioinformatics is on the left bank of Anduin while CS is on the right. I would have put Botany in Fangorn (because of the Ents), Microbiology in the Sea of Rhûn for beyond it are “wide uncharted lands, nameless plains, and forests […]

What is the function of a necktie?

From a random bulletin board…

Awesomest Cola & Mentos yet

Yeah, yeah, Cola & Mentos videos are getting somewhat tired. Still, this one really goes overboard: Ha! Now how does the Cola & Mentos reaction work? Well, first, the Cola & Mentos thing is a physical reaction, more than  a chemical one: it happens mainly due to nucleation sites provided by the pitted surface of […]


For old-school geeks who spent the better time of their childhood prefecting their Space Invaders and Donkey Kong skills. A NYC disaster movie meets… well, something. Hat tip to Mickey.

Colbert on Gene Patents

Recently, a judge in Federal District Court in Manhattan ruled that Myriad’s patents on BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes were invalid, being a “products of the law nature” and could be patented no more than, say, mount Everest. These two genes are associated with breast and ovarian cancer, and are used in testing for susceptibility to […]