Science & Society

Following up on my initial comments, my first two posts in Nature Precedings have appeared. Most people have been posting Powerpoint presentations so I started there with a recent presentation at the American Chemical Society about Open Notebook Science. Open Notebook Science Using Blogs and Wikis (doi:10.1038/npre.2007.39.1) Next, I posted an update on the CombiUgi project by basically combining two blog posts (one and

A team of LLNL researchers has conceptually proven that a three-in-one machine, or “universal point detection system,” that can detect explosive, chemical and biological agents all at the same time, can be achieved, said George Farquar, a postdoctoral fellow and physical chemist at the LLNL’s Glenn T. Seaborg Institute.


Audrey Martin adjusts the lens stack of SPAMS. Martin, who worked at LLNL for 15 weeks last summer as a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Fellow, is the first DHS intern hired into the Laboratory as a full-time student employee.

If you've ever thought about running a public company, Sarbanes-Oxley is something you probably dread. Commonly dubbed "The Enron Law", it requires enormous oversight paperwork with the consequence that Chairmen, CEOs and Directors can go to jail if they violate it. A new University of Georgia study finds that the 2002 law has altered the makeup of corporate boards, making them larger and more independent and also had the unintended effect of increasing director pay - by more than 50 percent.

CEO pay as well. If you can go to jail for doing a job, be it Director or CEO, you demand more money to do it.

The unique cooperation model used in the political field by the countries around the Baltic Sea needs to be extended to the public-private sector in order to increase the competitiveness and attractiveness of the Baltic Sea Region. This was one of the main conclusions reached by the leading representatives from business, government and research within the ICT and Life-Science at the seminar "Talents on Top of Europe" at the Nordic Embassies in Berlin today.

Egon has just posted about Nature Precedings, which looks like a no-brainer as an additional publication outlet for UsefulChem. I've requested an account and we'll see how it works. In my view, producing knowledge in a Science 2.0 world is about communicating through redundancy, making it easy to prove who-knew-what-when. That is difficult to do with the traditional scientific publication system of giving away copyright. (Not impossible, because concepts and results can be rewritten using different words, but still difficult). This should be interesting.

What do glowing veggies have to do with a career in science" It just so happens that electrified pickles swimming in metal ions are one example of the type of undergraduate chemistry class demonstration that helps make a future in science a bright possibility, rather than a total turn-off, for many students.

In a commentary in this month’s Nature Chemical Biology, Brandeis University and Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Professor Irving Epstein outlines a gathering storm clouding the future of U.S. science and prescribes a series of strategies to help avert a looming national crisis. Epstein says the continued success of U.S. science is seriously threatened by the fact that increasing numbers of undergraduates, particularly the disadvantaged, are writing off a career in science.

Millions of people the world over suffer today from obesity, yet there is no “magic bullet” that has yet provided a universally accepted solution. However, a young researcher at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem feels he has come up with a practical weight loss solution for the obese person without his having to feel hungry.

For this development, Yaniv Linde, a 32-year-old Ph.D. student of Prof. Chaim Gilon in the Department of Organic Chemistry at the Hebrew University, has been named a first place winner of a Kaye Innovation Award, which was presented today (June 6) during the 70th meeting of the Hebrew University Board of Governors.

City Of Pods

City Of Pods

Jun 02 2007 | 0 comment(s)

This has been a productive week with setting up Drexel Island on Second Life. We have settled on a pod tree structure to house departments and faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences. Eloise helped with the pods and Beth and I selected most of the content.

Scientists have identified the receptor in cells of the peripheral nervous system that is most responsible for the body's ability to sense cold.

The findings reveal one of the key mechanisms by which the body detects temperature sensation. But in so doing it also illuminates a mechanism that mediates how the body experiences intense stimuli – temperature, in this case – that can cause pain.


Menthol and TRPM8

Too many weird stories to blog about today so here are some links:

Poland inquiry to probe 'gay' teletubbies
Poland's conservative government sees the teletubbies as homosexual propaganda on the small screen, and is taking aim at Tinky Winky and his friends. Ewa Sowinska, government-appointed children rights watchdog, told a local magazine published on Monday she was concerned the popular BBC children's show promoted homosexuality.