Life From Life

When you’re a scientist, you spend a lot taking things apart – isn’t one of everyone’s first experiments the dissection of a frog?  Of course, the reason you’re taking things apart is because you’re trying to figure out what makes them tick.  Enter the engineers.  Engineers, rather than take things apart, start putting them together…

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We Were Not Alone

Last week – amid all the interest in Lincoln’s 200th birthday (not to mention the fuss over the Stimulus package), there was a piece of scientific news that I thought was pretty cool.  A group from Germany released a draft report on the genome of Neanderthal. Now, if there was ever a group that gets…

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Your Genome’s a Mess

"What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason! How infinite in faculty! In form and moving how express and admirable! In action how like an angel! In apprehension how like a god! The beauty of the world, the paragon of animals!"  Hamlet, (Act II, Sc. II). Throughout my time as a scientist,…

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Life: Some Assembly Required?

I'll tell you the problem with the scientific power that you're using here: it didn't require any discipline to attain it. You read what others had done and you took the next step. You didn't earn the knowledge for yourselves, so you don't take any responsibility for it. You stood on the shoulders of geniuses…

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Real-time Evolution

I don’t usually take a lot of this space to talk about work-like things.  But today, I came across a scientific paper that was just published that has nothing whatsoever to do with what I do on a day to day basis, but is just so damn cool, that I wanted to bring it to…

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