Coronary angiogram cardiac cath cardiology LAD left anterior descending









No Reduction in Mortality or Heart Attacks  



According to Secretary of State Clinton*, the following are more important than human rights:

Global economic crisis (fair enough, nothing helps quality of life like times o' plenty)
Climate change crisis (sorry human rights you aren't a crisis)
North Korean nuclear disarmament (if you have a spare hour ask me why US policy toward North Korea violates the highly predictive Universal Human Model)

*Commenting on the agenda for her official visit to China

My Satellite will either save or destroy the Earth. I work as a Daytime Astronomer on the STEREO mission, a pair of identical satellites sent into an Earth-sized solar orbit to stare at the Sun.

Apparently, we also kill satellites. Our PI-- Principal Investigator-- took the role of private investigator and forwarded a Russian newspaper article on the recent satellite collision. Unjustly, they took an artist's conception of our satellite and added in some debris and wreckage to implicate us in the collision!


In 2004, a scientific crew braced the cold and the odds to extract a sediment core from 400m below the seabed of the Arctic Ocean. The core showed that Fifty-five million years ago, deep in the Eocene, the North Pole was ice-free and enjoying tropical temperatures. It also told us that the temperature of the ocean was 20C, instead of the coolish –1.5C we see today, a truth that is hard to imagine today with all the hype around global warming -- even from bright folks like Al Gore.

Has anyone ever wondered what embodies our self’s essence? May be a needle in a haystack number of people think of such wonderments. However, the question is, are such thoughts just a waste of time or it has indeed some utility for human existence?


A new hypothesis, published in today's Nature, suggests that Alzheimer's may be caused by a normal prenatal developmental process gone awry in the adult brain.

Before you cast aside years of beta-amyloid research or proclaim a cure is imminent, relax - the results are only from lab and mouse studies. The research indicates that beta-amyloid precursor protein "and DR6 are components of a neuronal self-destruction pathway, and suggests that an extracellular fragment of APP, acting via DR6 and caspase 6, contributes to Alzheimer's disease."

Should the government or private industry shoulder the initiative for meaningful strides in alternative energy breakthroughs?  The level of disruption necessary cannot be achieved on any practial time horizon by private industry without some enormous stroke of luck.  Obama's references to JFK, an energy moonshot and government initiatives in this area is the best hope, but the logistics of propelling this economically and pragmatically are unclear.  An encouraging answer is some combination of private and public effort such as the DOE's initiative to partner national laboratories with VCs.   

There is often an uncomfortable and artificial hierarchy amongst theorists and experimentalists.  Those exalting pure theory often forget that applied science is an art unto itself as is engineering.  There are many problems in applied science or engineering in which theorists are ill-equipped.  Of course, there are rare examples of great theorists who were also great experimentalists such as Fermi.  Steven Quake describes some examples of the crossover between pure and applied science and the scientists behind these initiatives.
I saw the coolest thing ever on the Rachel Maddow Show tonight. Ever. Thomas Gillespie of the Geography Department at UCLA was on the show discussing his attempt to predict bin Laden's location using satellite imagery and biogeographic theory! It was so amazingly cool to hear him discussing distance-decay models and island biogeography theory to predict bin Laden's location. It's all the cooler because Gillespie is, at least in part, a tropical forest ecologist, did his Ph.D. on tropical dry forests in Nicaragua, and has published on dry forest fragments in south Florida.