Cool Links

By now you'll be familiar with publication bias: the phenomenon where studies with boring, negative results are less likely to get written up or published. You can estimate this using a tool such as, say, a funnel plot. The principle is simple: expensive landmark studies are harder to brush under the carpet, but small ones can disappear more easily. So split your studies into "big ones" and "small ones": if the small studies, averaged out together, give a more positive result than the big studies, then maybe some small negative studies have gone missing in action.
Fingerprints? We don't need no stinking fingerprints.

Police have used dentures to nab Milton Cesar de Jesus for a purse snatching in Severini, Brazil.  A hobo found them after the robbery and turned them over to cops, along with a description of the assailant so police picked up de Jesus based on that.  de Jesus denied the crime but the cops put the dentures in his partially toothed mouth and they were a perfect fit.  

A risky move but it worked.  As Johnny Cochran famously said, "if the gloves don't fit, you must acquit."   Don't you miss the 1990s, when rhyming tort was still cool?
They've won the final battle but stand a chance of losing the peace if they're not careful.   Harry Potter and his friends did their part but, like Sam Adams after the American Revolution was over, need to step aside now and let foreign policy experts take over.
If you've read Science 2.0 for any length of time, you've seen Bayes' Theorem - mostly in sports.  We use it to predict who will win the baseball playoffs, for example.  

Bayes’s theorem, named after 18th-century Presbyterian minister Thomas Bayes, has become an invaluable tool for scientists. 
As I said in our earlier piece outlining how perhaps SETI had outlived its usefulness given modern knowledge, the success metric was that a civilization more than 400 years away - because we know there are none closer - would have to have sent low-tech radio signals to a planet that lacked the technology to receive radio signals when they sent them. The aliens basically would have needed to know the future, which means they didn't need radio waves.
Tired of protein folding, bored with looking for big objects in space?   Now you can go tiny.   As in a fundamental particle.

The Large Hadron Collider team wants to tap into the collective computing power of the public with a project LHC@home 2.0, an updated version of a 2004 effort to enlist the public's computers to simulate beams of protons.

The Worldwide Large Hadron Collider Computing Grid is a 100m-euro network designed to handle the flood of data created by the LHC and distribute it to scientists worldwide.  The LHC@home project will complement this network by splitting up the gargantuan task of simulating the collisions, feeding those computer simulations back to the scientists for comparison.
A team of Italian archaeologists believe they have discovered the tomb of Philip, one of Jesus' 12 apostles, at the ancient Asia Minor city of Hierapolis in the Aegean province of Denizli, known today as Pamukkale in Turkey, and are planning to excavate the unopened grave soon.

The discovery of the grave of the New Testament saint, who it is said came to Hierapolis nearly 2,000 years ago to spread the Gospel and was crucified upside down by the Romans, will attract immense attention around the world, said excavator Francesco D'Andria, director of the Institute of Archaeological Heritage, Monuments and Sites at Italy's National Research Council in Lecce.
If you have a million dollars to spend, you want something distinct - the 700 horsepower, twin-turbocharged 12-cylinder carbon-titanium Huayra supercar by Pagani is certainly that.  Take that, you Bugatti Veyron and Lamborghini Reventon commoners!

But don't get out your checkbook just yet, the U.S. is blocking its sale because it doesn't have child-safe airbags.
I don't watch reality performance shows because the few I have seen in America are rather predictable, people dancing or doing weird stuff and whatnot.

But today, via Google Plus, I got a chance to see Kseniya Simonova do sand art and animation on "Ukraine's Got Talent".  The story she tells, in real time, using nothing but sand as her medium and then animating's too ridiculously talented to describe.    You don't have 8 minutes to kill, nor do I, but it is maybe the best 8 minutes you will spend today.

Ads for drugs today are kind of silly. Ads for erectile dysfunction, for example, are weird geological changes happening in real time that end up with a couple sitting in bathtubs in a forest somewhere, instead of being about what men really care about...

Other products have 5 seconds of benefit followed by paragraphs of disclaimers about side effects ending with “see our ad in GOLF magazine”.  Golf magazine must be read solely by really, really ill people. 

It wasn’t always like that. Ads used to be ridiculous exaggerations and downright funny.

See the details here.
On the Internet, and certainly in science blogging, it may seem like biologists are more interested in culture wars with the religious fringe than talking about evolution.

The Institute of Human Origins (IHO) and its Becoming Human outreach site instead conducts, interprets and publicizes scientific research and the sponsorship of scholarly interaction to advance scientific understanding of our origins and its contemporary relevance, which means it is a place people can get smarter.   That's always good.

Here's a screenshot on bipedalism but it's full of good stuff for people of all ages so give it a look:
On August 6th 1991, Tim Berners-Lee, posted a summary of the World Wide Web concept in the alt.hypertext newsgroup.  It was a message that laid the groundwork for a new technology that revolutionized commerce and communication.   You might also want to blame the WWW for spam but, no, the first spam message was in 1978 when Gary Thuerk,  a marketing guy for Digital Equipment Corporation, annoyed 400 of the 2600 people on ARPAnet with an ALL CAPS message promoting a DEC seminar.
Wherever you are – anywhere in the world – on August 5th, contribute to science by taking a photo of a blank white piece of paper, outside in the sun, between 4:00 and 7:00 pm local time.

Your photo will used to measure how much of the sun’s energy is reflected back from the Earth -- our planet's "albedo." It's one way scientists can monitor how much energy – and heat – is being absorbed by our planet.


Here is what you need to do:

On August 5, 2011, take a photo between 4:00 pm and 7:00 pm local time.
Put a white piece of paper on a flat surface. The white paper should fill 1/4 to 1/2 of the total view.
The DNA profile of serial killer Ted Bundy will be uploaded to a national database today, good news for future episodes of "CSI" on television - and maybe some actual CSI people in the field.
What is the world coming to when a man can't even split atoms in his own kitchen any more?   

Richard Handl said he has always been attracted to physics and chemistry and so he decided to do a little citizen science.  It was no secret, he even kept a blog about it.  In it, he described how he managed a minor meltdown at home but there were no dangerous radiation levels.

When he figured he might be doing something illegal - Sweden is progressive and tolerant but they are not the ACLU - he wrote the Sweden's Radiation Authority and they replied to the lovable scamp by sending the police.   What did they find?  Radium, americium and uranium so they arrested him on charges of unauthorized possession of nuclear material.
Scientists have discovered a fossilized skull of a tree-climbing ape dating back about 20 million years while looking for fossils in the remnants of an extinct volcano in Karamoja, a semi-arid region in Uganda's northeastern corner.

Preliminary studies determined the tree-climbing herbivore was roughly 10-years-old when it died. Uganda's junior minister for tourism, wildlife and heritage said the skull was a remote cousin of the Hominidea Fossil Ape.

A drought has left the OC Fisher Reservoir in San Angelo State Park of West Texas almost empty, except for stagnant, dead fish that have made the water a deep red.

Credit: Texas Parks and Wildlife Inland Fisheries--San Angelo, and it's a lot more red now.
A piece of debris from NASA's space shuttle Columbia has been discovered in Texas, eight years after the 2003 disaster that destroyed the spacecraft and killed its seven-astronaut crew during re-entry.

The debris is a round aluminum power reactant storage and distribution tank from Columbia and was discovered in an exposed area of Lake Nacogdoches, in Nacogdoches, Texas, about 160 miles northeast of Houston.

Columbia shuttle debris Texas
The controversy over human embryonic stem cell research was a policy one more than a science one; with so many diverse scientists there had to be an ethical standard created by society, just like with animal testing and the environment.

Since the introduction of the 2008 Human Fertilisation Embryology Act in the UK, with standards much looser than the US and most of Europe, 155 ‘admixed’ embryos, containing both human and animal genetic material, have been created according to the Daily Mail.
No one cares about progress and society like the New York State Fair. Check out this beast: a quarter-pound of hamburger between slices of a grilled, glazed doughnut. Throw in cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato and onion and you’ve got yourself a 1,500-calorie meal, including the major food groups, for $5.

Big Kahuna Donut Burger - I want one – at