Book Review – Geek Nation

I’ve never been to India, but I did change planes at the airport in Delhi on my way to Kathmandu this summer. Delhi airport looks like every other major international airport, with a Body Shop, WH Smith, and Costa Coffee. The shops accepted American dollars, but gave change in rupees....

Can technology protect against fraud?

Even though I’ve left the lab a few years ago, I’m still interested in what goes on in labs. Perhaps even more than before, because I can now take a step back to think about things in a broader sense. Take lab notebooks, for example. There was a news article...

CodeYear

I’ve signed up for something that I first saw when Fiona shared it on Facebook. CodeYear. Each week in 2012 you get an email from Codecademy with a link to a basic JavaScript coding lesson. It’s meant to introduce coding to the general public, and it’s completely free. Hundreds of...

2011 on Expression Patterns

I didn’t blog much last year, but 8% of my posts were either selected for Open Lab or reached the front page of reddit, so there. Here are some highlights (and basically a list of every other post of 2011) Beer chemistry (as seen on reddit) Make History, not vitamin...

Showing Off

Two things to show off: 1. I’ll be on stage at Science Showoff tomorrow night. It’s in London, and it’s free. I’m going to share some of the interviews I’ve done with scientist-musicians, and tell some anecdotes about others that I have not (yet) caught on tape. The other performers...

Advent Calendars

I always wait until after December 1st to get an advent calendar, but the ones that were left in the store were all terrible, so for the same amount of money as the discounted calendars I bought a box of After Eight mints and made my own advent calendar. (Starts...

Hovercraftcrafting

Earlier this month, I joined a table of fellow geeks (including NN’s own Lou) to craft hovercrafts at Drink Shop & Do. The event was run by Science London (the London branch of the British Science Association), who regularly host science craft nights. Dan had been before, and encouraged us...

A plumber’s advice on unclogging your career

“There are four types of toilets.” “Oh, really?” “First, there’s the type you know from granny’s house, with the cistern up here.” He gestured at an imaginary cistern floating seven feet up in the air in the main area of the new house. “Then people wanted the cistern lower, but...

Dancing scientists cure cancer

Canadian scientists are curing cancer by dancing. Well, they’re trying, at least. Researchers of the Goodman Cancer Research Centre at McGill University in Montreal have made a YouTube video of them dancing in their labs to “Dynamite” by Taio Cruz. Their sponsor, Medicom, is donating money to their research institute...

Science Offline

This year’s Science Online London was probably my favourite so far in terms of the variety in the programme. There were sessions about communicating science using the web, but also also practical data-wrangling sessions. Something for everyone. As much as I like how Science Online brings together various groups of...