Image origins: That walking molecule

Suddenly it’s everywhere: a gif of a molecule stepping along, carrying a big load. It’s currently going viral online, with text suggesting that it’s a myosin molecule carrying endorphins in the brain. It’s none of that. First of all, it’s not a myosin molecule, but kinesin. They’re both motor proteins…


New beginnings

It’s been a bit quiet here, partly because I had to fix some technical issues with the blog, but also because I started a new job and a new course a few weeks ago. Everything is different now! Over the last year I had somehow ended up in a place…

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Conference name badges

I tidied my desk area this weekend, and thought it was time to go through my collection of conference name badges. I may have a problem: There were badges for conferences about stem cells, worm genetics, biochemistry, ecology, science journalism, microbiology, signalling networks, art/science, and local graduate student meetings at…


Science images in the public domain

A few years ago, the British Library put a collection of a million images on Flickr, all made available with no restrictions for reuse. They are tagged and described relatively well, so it’s possible to search through them for specific topics. Here are a few of the science images from…


Of mice and men – a poem

  (Every line is the title of an academic article. References below.)   Of mice and men?1   Of mice and men.2 Of mice and men, metals and mutations.3 Of mice and men, corticosteroids, and vicarious participation.4 Of mice and men–universality and breakdown of behavioral organization.5 Of mice and men:…


Making science open to everyone

I get the impression that people see me as two entirely different people: On the one hand, there’s the person who supports open science and helps scientists get their work out. On the other hand, there’s the person who is always talking about how science integrates with art, music, travel,…

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Science and the rest of life

Last week was the annual ArchWay With Words literary festival in North London. Just in its third year, it’s quite popular already, and booklovers from all over the city have attended author talks. The programming is varied, and there are talks about all kinds of books and on all kinds…


Science at ArchWay With Words

I noticed it last year as well, but this year North London literary festival ArchWay With Words has even more science-themed events! Sadly most of them overlap with evenings I’m volunteering at the You Me Bum Bum Train theatre production elsewhere in London, but I’ll try to catch at least…


Wellcome Collection event about music

If you’re in London this coming weekend, you should drop by the “Why Music?” events at the Wellcome Collection, organised in collaboration with BBC3. The weekend is packed full with three days of talks, workshops and performances all about how music shapes us. Some events are ticketed, but there are…


Books and the image of science

[SCRIPT] I’ve been catching up on classics, and recently read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (first published in 1818) and Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, from 1962. These are two very different books. One is a horror story and the other is a non-fiction book about the effects of pesticides on the environment….