A few years ago I wrote a blog post about a study that found a link between certain genes and interest in politics. Two new studies have come out since that go even further, and find a link between brain region size and genes, and political preference. I discuss them below. Brain Region Size and Ideology A new study by scientists at University College London has found a link between the size of certain areas of the brain and political viewpoints. In sum: "Scientists have found that people with conservative views have brains with larger amygdalas, almond shaped areas in the centre Continue reading Biology and Politics
I love lists and I hope you do too. Several lists have occurred to me recently, and I was going to ignore my itch to make them because there are probably lots of good end-of-year lists floating around now. But do any of them take a quantitative approach to list-making? I’m going to try the procedure. How to make an End-Of-Decade List of the most Significant Days of the Decade? Prelude: Several months ago there was a widely-circulated news story about “the most boring day in history”: the finger was pointed at April 11th 1954. William Tunstall-Pedoe’s computer program ‘True Knowledge’ Continue reading 2000 – 2010: End of Year/End of Decade Lists: Top Five Politically Significant Days of the Decade?
Microbiology posts its best reviewer comments every year; the 2010 edition is out (I beleive the article is ungated). A few highlights include: The writing and data presentation are so bad that I had to leave work and go home early and then spend time to wonder what life is about. It is sad to see so much enthusiasm and effort go into analyzing a dataset that is just not big enough. I have to admit that I would have liked to reject this paper because I found the tone in the Reply to the Reviewers so annoying. It may Continue reading The best and worst of review comments – Microbiology edition
I found this link via Andrew Gelman's blog the other day: CRACK Mapmaking software for Mac I haven't had much of a chance to play with it, but it looks like it could be useful. I've had a few instances in class this semester where I've wanted to make some maps of the US to illustrate various points, but alas, have not known how to do so. Rather, I've wanted to make customizable maps, but have not known how. It seems like this program is pretty simple to use–just drag and drop a CSV file with the relevant data onto Continue reading CRACK