Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Notes for June 2nd

  • Whale biodiversity is interesting.  Not sure this article is as well written as it should be, but I definitely found the topic interesting.
  • Cassava is an interesting plant.  Originally from South America, it became a staple in Africa.  According to people I've known who've lived there, it has become a part of the local tradition.  Overall, it isn't a very friendly crop.  The skin is laced with cyanide and it tastes terrible.  Just to eat it, one must soak, ferment or otherwise process it to remove the cyanide (sometimes all three).  However, you can pretty much just plant it and forget it (at least in Africa), because it will survive drought and the bitterness of the tubers deters most pests.  Not all pests, however.  In addition to a few S. American parasites that (somehow) crossed the Atlantic, a new virus is threatening to cause some major problems.
  • Albert Einstein is the closest thing there is to a god of science, so perhaps it isn't surprising that so much has been made of his brain.
  • "One of the most significant papers ever published in the annals of science appeared recently; it deals, for the first time ever, with one of the biggest scientific questions ever faced by the scientific community, and uses cutting-edge technology and awesome powers of deductive reasoning and logic to reach shocking, paradigm-shifting conclusions."  Yes...he's talking about whether or not giraffes can swim.
  • Dr. Carin Bondar's blog is...ah...unusual for a science blog.  Primarily because of the professionally styled photographs in the header and the overall artistic style.  But also because she included a picture of the stars of Sex in the City and used the phrase 'girl power' without causing me to vomit.  Ok, I felt like vomiting, but only because those actors are disgusting.


Carin Bondar said...

Thanks for the link James :) Sometimes I can't stop thinking about the parallels between our species and others, though the link to Carrie Bradshaw is far fetched at best! Would love to read more about your work, I'm a huge Lamberti fan. Quite the party animal as I remember from the good old NABS days!

JL said...

I just spent like five minutes wracking my brain trying to figure out who Carrie Bradshaw was before just googling it.