tuesday at 3 pm works for me

Apparently, Tuesday at 3 pm is the best time to suggest as a meeting time–that’s when people have the most flexibility available in their schedule. At least, that’s the conclusion drawn by a study based on data from WhenIsGood, a free service that helps with meeting scheduling. There’s not much to the study beyond the … Continue reading tuesday at 3 pm works for me

not a day over six

I was born twenty-nine years ago today. This isn’t particularly noteworthy–after all, there are few things as predictable as birthdays–except that all day today, people have been trying to scare me into thinking I’m old. Like somehow twenty-nine is the big one. Well, it isn’t the big one, and I’m not old. Telling me that … Continue reading not a day over six

the brain, in pictures, in newsweek

Newsweek has a beautiful set of graphics illustrating some of the things we’ve learned about the brain in recent years. One or two of the graphics are a bit hokey (e.g., the PET slides showing the effects of a seizure don’t show the same brain slices, and it’s unclear whether the color scales are equivalent), … Continue reading the brain, in pictures, in newsweek

i hate learning new things

Well, I don’t really hate learning new things. I actually quite like learning new things; what I don’t like is having to spend time learning new things. I find my tolerance for the unique kind of frustration associated with learning a new skill (you know, the kind that manifests itself in a series of “crap, … Continue reading i hate learning new things

the genetics of dog hair

Aside from containing about eleventy hundred papers on Ardi–our new 4.4 million year-old ancestor–this week’s issue of Science has an interesting article on the genetics of dog hair. What is there to know about dog hair, you ask? Well, it turns out that nearly all of the phenotypic variation in dog coats (curly, shaggy, short-haired, … Continue reading the genetics of dog hair

diamonds, beer, bars, and pandas: the 2009 Ig Nobel prizes

Apparently I missed this, but the 2009 Ig Nobel prizes were awarded a couple of days ago. There’s a lot of good stuff this year, so it’s hard to pick a favorite; you have people making diamonds from tequila,  demonstrating that beer bottles can crack human skulls, turning bras into facemasks, and reducing garbage mass … Continue reading diamonds, beer, bars, and pandas: the 2009 Ig Nobel prizes

younger and wiser?

Peer reviewers get worse as they age, not better. That’s the conclusion drawn by a study discussed in the latest issue of Nature. The study isn’t published yet, and it’s based on analysis of 1,400 reviews in just one biomedical journal (The Annals of Emergency Medicine), but there’s no obvious reason why these findings shouldn’t … Continue reading younger and wiser?

creation! …and duplication.

So, I thought I was being clever, but apparently there are at least three other “citation needed” blogs. Curiously, all three have the same square parentheses (what do you call those things anyway?). Actually, strictly speaking, one of the citation neededs is an x[citation needed], and not just a [citation needed], so that’s technically a … Continue reading creation! …and duplication.