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  • February 10, 2013
  • 04:35 PM

Why scientists should play games

by TheCellularScale in The Cellular Scale

I have just finished reading Jane McGonigal's book Reality is Broken: Why games make us better and how they can change the world. It is a fascinating book which presents a strong case for games (including video games) doing good in the world.Reality is Broken by Jane McGonigalI have to admit, part of me wanted to read this book to make me feel better about my own video game habit. It certainly helped solidify the vague ideas I had about what good they might be doing me.Specifically, the book mad........ Read more »

  • February 10, 2013
  • 07:51 AM

Write longer Research Papers to increase your chances of Citations

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Researchers have found that usually the research articles that are longer get more citations as compared to the less-lengthy articles.

This research has been published online in the journal PLoS ONE.

The citations are considered as the quality of the study and thus show its value and impact on the scientific field. Researchers usually work on several factors, such as impact factor of the journal and study design, while writing a paper that may contribute to the increased citation of the pa........ Read more »

  • February 9, 2013
  • 06:40 AM

Postgraduate education: Time for a rethink

by Dorothy Bishop in bishopblog

According to Lindley and Machin (2012) "It is very clear that the individuals who have done better in terms of wages are those who have acquired higher education qualifications. In turn, the acquisition of higher qualifications has become more skewed towards people from wealthier backgrounds." This issue was highlighted last month when a potential student sued an Oxford college who refused him admission because he did not have sufficient funds to meet their cost of living requirement. ........ Read more »

  • February 7, 2013
  • 07:22 PM

Academic Freedom and International Collaborations

by Andreas Muenchow in Icy Seas

Working in the Arctic is hard. Despite climate warming, despite diminishing ice cover, despite public interest and global impact, it is still a hostile and challenging place. It is also very expensive to get to. It usually takes me 2-4 … Continue reading →... Read more »

Editorial. (2012) Frozen out. Nature, 483(7387), 6-6. DOI: 10.1038/483006a  

  • February 5, 2013
  • 03:39 PM

The “ISW mystery” deepens considerably (II)

by Shaun Hotchkiss in The Trenches of Discovery

This time last year I wrote a few posts describing what I called the “ISW mystery”. A year has passed, it is time for an update on the mystery.

The very short summary is that things are starting to get more than a little bit exciting. All of the plausible ways in which the calculation of the expected ISW signal could have been wrong have been checked and eliminated as possibilities; if the measured signal is real, it is too large for the standard cosmological model. Much, much more exciti........ Read more »

Yan-Chuan Cai, Mark C. Neyrinck, Istvan Szapudi, Shaun Cole, & Carlos S. Frenk. (2013) A Detection of the Cold Imprint of Voids on the Microwave Background Radiation. arXiv. arXiv: 1301.6136v1

S. Ilic, M. Langer, & M. Douspis. (2013) On the detection of the integrated Sachs-Wolfe effect with stacked voids. arXiv. arXiv: 1301.5849v1

  • February 4, 2013
  • 09:47 AM

Privacy and Progress in Whole Genome Sequencing: webinar series

by Mary in OpenHelix

Hey folks–as a public service announcement I’m posting this email from the Genetic Alliance folks. They’ve assembled a terrific webinar series that cover hot topics in genomics research and privacy issues. I’m posting part of the email, but then will direct you to their page for the full list of upcoming webinars. I’ve read the [...]... Read more »

Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. (2012) Privacy and Progress in Whole Genome Sequencing. info:other/

Gymrek, M., McGuire, A., Golan, D., Halperin, E., & Erlich, Y. (2013) Identifying Personal Genomes by Surname Inference. Science, 339(6117), 321-324. DOI: 10.1126/science.1229566  

  • February 3, 2013
  • 11:59 PM

BAD Science or BAD Science Journalism? – A Response to Daniel Lakens

by Laika in Laika's Medliblog

Two weeks ago there was a hot debate among Dutch Tweeps on “bad science, bad science journalism and bad science communication“. This debate was started and fueled by different Dutch blog posts on this topic.[1,4-6]

A controversial post, with both fierce proponents and fierce opposition was the post by Daniel Lakens [1], an assistant professor in Applied Cognitive Psychology.

I was among the opponents. Not because I don’t like a new fresh point of view, but because of a w........ Read more »

  • February 2, 2013
  • 12:04 PM

LMAYQ: Let me do your homework for you

by TheCellularScale in The Cellular Scale

Sometimes reading the textbook is just too hard. And sometimes it's much easier just to type your exact homework question into a search engine and find the answer. Before we get started you might want to take a look at Smith and Wren (2010) "What is Plagiarism and how can I avoid it?" This edition of Let Me Answer Your Questions will address 'homework questions.' As always, you can find previous LMAYQ questions here.Tough Homework Questions are for the Internet (source)1. "cells that f........ Read more »

Smith N Jr, & Wren KR. (2010) Ethical and legal aspects part 2: plagiarism--"what is it and how do I avoid it?". Journal of perianesthesia nursing : official journal of the American Society of PeriAnesthesia Nurses / American Society of PeriAnesthesia Nurses, 25(5), 327-30. PMID: 20875892  

  • February 1, 2013
  • 12:31 PM

Predatory Prawns

by Emarkham in GeneticCuckoo

A new ecological method of control for an African parasitic disease, an analysis of the benefits and limitations of this approach. ... Read more »

E Markham. (2013) Predatory Prawns. Blogspot. info:/

  • January 31, 2013
  • 06:46 PM

Dogs & Cats, Cats & Working Dogs, Working Dogs & Emotions

by Cobb & Hecht in Do You Believe In Dog?

Hi Julie!What a busy week I’ve found myself having! Very productive indeed, with a lot of this:and some more of that: Fuelled by a ton of this:But I did take time to notice that your cat Josh broke something new.  Oh Josh! Thanks for telling me about your ISHAR presentation about dogs and cats in the home.  I can definitely relate to the importance of early socialisation = best chance at harmony. Take my dog Elke, for example.As a pup, she met and spent time aroun........ Read more »

  • January 31, 2013
  • 10:30 AM

Need a Pen? Drug Companies Start Early When it Comes to Marketing to Med Students

by Matt Wood in ScienceLife

Drug companies spend billions of dollars on advertising to consumers online, in print and TV. Their ads are such an everyday part of the media landscape that Saturday Night Live can run a skit mocking the hilarious and scary list of disclaimers about side effects and everyone is in on the joke. And that’s just [...]... Read more »

Hodges LE, Arora VM, Humphrey HJ, & Reddy ST. (2012) Premedical Students' Exposure to the Pharmaceutical Industry's Marketing Practices. Academic medicine : journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges. PMID: 23269292  

  • January 30, 2013
  • 09:32 AM

Video Tip of the Week: ScienceGameCenter #edtech

by Mary in OpenHelix

Could you help Gregor Mendel obtain a plant with its coloring specified by recessive genes? Would you want to try to solve crime with some forensic DNA analysis? The ScienceGameCenter can give you the chance to do those things, and learn concepts of biology (and other sciences too!) at the same time. This week’s video tip of the week will focus on what they offer.... Read more »

  • January 28, 2013
  • 05:37 PM

Everybody is talking about this. What's your opinion?

by Eugenio Maria Battaglia in Science to Grok

Science is at a turning point. Decisions has been normally emerged from traditional scientific praxis and a general consent, without a real discussion on it. This worked so far, but nowadays we are facing huge paradigm shifts.

Scientific Blogs and social networking are well spread in the Internet community, and this fact is having a huge impact on the trends of scientific research.
Big Data, ITs and "omic-like" projects are some of the aspects that are speeding our world faster tha........ Read more »

Kobro-Flatmoen, A., Langdon, G., Wright, C., Block, J., Gilarranz, L., Lever, J., Rohr, R., Fortuna, M., Kamfonik, D., Grahl, J.... (2012) NextGenVoices -- Results. Science, 335(6064), 36-38. DOI: 10.1126/science.335.6064.36  

  • January 28, 2013
  • 09:09 AM

Identifying Samples from Genomic Data

by Daniel Koboldt in Massgenomics

In last week's issue of Science, Melissa Gymrek and colleagues from the lab of Yaniv Erlich (Whitehead) report a method for the triangulation the identity of a sample donor using genomic data and public databases.

As a proof-of-principle, they uncovered the identities of about 50 sample donors from the CEPH Utah collection, perhaps the best-studied collection of "anonymous" samples to date. Their approach exploits several facts of this "information age" we live in.... Read more »

Gymrek M, McGuire AL, Golan D, Halperin E, & Erlich Y. (2013) Identifying personal genomes by surname inference. Science (New York, N.Y.), 339(6117), 321-4. PMID: 23329047  

  • January 28, 2013
  • 05:19 AM

Impact factor of the journals and Citations of the research papers

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Impact factor (IF) of an academic journal refers to the average number of citations to the recently published articles, i.e. published in the previous two years, in the journal. These articles include research papers, reviews and news articles.

In the field of research, journals, indexed in Journal Citation Reports, with more IF are considered to be more important as compared to the lower ones.

However, impact factor is not the clear indication of the citations to the specific papers or of........ Read more »

Editorial. (2013) Beware the impact factor. Nature Materials, 12(2), 89-89. DOI: 10.1038/nmat3566  

  • January 27, 2013
  • 06:25 PM

When coping is not enough

by Cobb & Hecht in Do You Believe In Dog?

Hi Julie,Snapshot from Project: Play with your Dog's 'Wall of Contributors'I’m so pleased to hear that Project: Play with Your Dog is going well. I’ve enjoyed watching the wall of contributors grow and it’s awesome that The Bark featured the research project – but then, why wouldn't they? It’s a fantastic project!As you mentioned, I’ve been keeping busy getting organised for my presentation at next month’s RSPCA Australia Scientific Seminar. This event is held annual........ Read more »

Yeates James. (2011) Is 'a life worth living' a concept worth having?. Animal Welfare, 20(3), 397-406. info:other/

  • January 26, 2013
  • 10:07 PM

A Little Analysis of the Articles for Science Bloggers

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Science blogging is increasingly gaining attraction among the masses. You can consider it as a form of bridge between the common people and the scientists resulting in more awareness of the problems and the solutions.

Paul Knoepfler, an associate professor at the University of California, Davis, School of Medicine, wrote,

“Savvy scientists must increasingly engage with blogs and social media. A new generation of young researchers has grown up with an ever-present Internet. Publishers........ Read more »

Knoepfler, P. (2011) My year as a stem-cell blogger. Nature, 475(7357), 425-425. DOI: 10.1038/475425a  

  • January 25, 2013
  • 07:20 AM

Are we incentivizing hype in science? A case study

by Björn Brembs in

There is a lively discussion going on right now in various forums on the incentives for scientists to publish their work in this venue or another. Some of these discussions cite our manuscript on the pernicious consequences of journal rank, others don't. In our manuscript, we speculate that the scientific community may be facing a deluge of fraud and misconduct, because of the incentives to publish in high-ranking journals, a central point of contention in the discussions lnked to above. An exam........ Read more »

Wasserman, S., Salomon, A., & Frye, M. (2013) Drosophila Tracks Carbon Dioxide in Flight. Current Biology. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2012.12.038  

  • January 24, 2013
  • 07:29 AM

We Smell Ourselves (No, Not That Way)

by Andrew Porterfield in United Academics

Ever wonder why a perfume (or cologne) smells better on somebody else than on you? The reason lies in the interactions of our brains, immune system and nose. Our brains literally know exactly what we smell like and can set preferences based on that for associations with others (particularly sexual partners).... Read more »

Manfred Milinski, Ilona Croy,, Thomas Hummel, & and Thomas Boehm. (2013) Major histocompatibility complex peptide ligands as olfactory cues in human body odour assessment . Proc. R. Soc. B., 280(20122889). info:/10.1098/rspb.2012.2889

  • January 22, 2013
  • 07:41 PM

Cell phones track human migration

by Jes in Biogeography Bits

Here’s a question every scientist at some point asks themselves: does this data that I can easily and (relatively) inexpensively collect reasonably approximate the data that I would collect in an ideal world where I had bucket loads of money and an infinite amount of time? It may not be apparent from science news coverage, but a lot of science involves routinely checking that the methods we are... Read more »

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