Computer engineers have served up some unimaginable surprises. Just as the steam engine (in particular the highly efficient version devised by James Watt) was key to the industrial revolution in the 18th century, computers and other digital technologies have brought us to the second machine age and will do for mental power what the Watt steam engine did for muscle power.Details
A core concept in scientific research is the ability to replicate empirical results. This concept dates back to the birth of the experimental method itself. The Accademia del Cimento (Academy of Experiment) was funded in Florence in 1657 by Galileo’s students and it published the first scientific manual of experimentation for data collection and methodological standardization. The Society motto was provando e riprovando (trying and trying again), emphasizing the importance of replication for scientific experiments.Details
A False Sense of Precision—What Happens to Journal Impact Factor (JIF) Rankings When You Drop a Decimal Place?
The current world’s record in the 100-meter dash, held by the Jamaican runner Usain Bolt, is 9.58 seconds. Actually Bolt ran it in 9.572 seconds but the rules require rounding up to two decimal places. And yet in the 100-meter dash, a third decimal place can make a big difference at the finish line between gold or silver or bronze.Details
We all do it. We wrestle with an experiment for months until finally it works. The data are excellent and the findings novel. We drive our collaborators half mad with revisions and supplements to the many drafts. Now where do we send our precious paper?Details
Last week I wrote about the unnecessary measles anti-vax crisis and the failure of science communication. I’d like to return to the topic of science communication in this blog post.Details
As a child growing up in Italy in the 1960s, I had measles. In those days, pretty much everybody had measles at some point because the virus is so infectious that 90% of those who come in contact with the virus contract the disease.Details
“The time is right to unleash a new series of events in precision medicine, and the very good news is that there is bipartisan support in Washington,” said President Obama this morning at an event in the White House in front of high-ranking government officials, advocates for science, and patients.Details