What did you do last week?

In my case, there was a the usual – I ordered DNA primers, sequenced some DNA, went through that sequence and assembled it into my model… I cooked some dinner, slept some. But last week was punctuated with something a little different.

Monday morning, the first new episode of my old radio show The Inoculated Mind Radio and Mindcast, aired on the local Madison student station, WSUM.  The show was pre-recorded the week before, because I was not going to be in Madison to do it live.

The same day, I was visiting the San Francisco Bay Area with Anastasia, zooming around the City, meeting up with PZ Myers, and oh yeah – having dinner with Michael Pollan at Chez Panisse! My review is up, as well as Anastasia’s.

As for the show, I used to host the Mindcast here on this blog, however, I have built a completely new site called Inoculated Media dedicated to hosting the show. Continue reading What did you do last week?

Getting my wish

After an abnormally warm fall it seems that Winter has finally arrived in Madison. Less than a week has passed since our first snowfall and we’ve had a second one. Furthermore, starting tonight we’re about to get one heck of a storm that could drop as much as 11 inches on Wisconsin!

I wonder, why does the Copenhagen climate conference always happen in the Winter? Maybe the response to the bogus ClimateGate should have been to move it to the summertime? Maybe it will be easier to talk about global warming if people aren’t freezing.

I wonder what crazy things people might misconstrue my emails to mean?

Update 9:30 pm: The University will be closed for Wednesday. I received an email at 9:20 pm (a little late?) telling me what I already guessed. All non-essential personnel are to stay home, classes are canceled, etc etc, but there was something ominous at the very end of it that caught my attention:

Happy snow day! I think I will spend it designing primers and writing my term paper.

Happy Birthday Carl Sagan

Tip of the pipette to Phil Plait for reminding me.

Today, Carl Sagan would have been 75 years old if he had not died in 1996. As a scientist, communicator, and humanist he knew the value of science and the importance of helping people understand its full implications. The notion that we need an army of Sagans to fix the problems with public understanding and acceptance of science is often criticized by communication experts as naive – we need more approaches than just his.

But you know what, it wouldn’t hurt to have a few more Carl Sagans running around. There’s room for some more scientist-communicators like Sagan on this pale blue dot.

And the winner is…

Previously, I asked my readers to come on over to Biofortified, my new home for all things transgenic, and vote for it in the Ashoka Changemakers GMO Risk or Rescue contest. Due to a large amount of support from the science blogging community, we gathered over 800 votes, winning the contest by more than a 2 to 1 margin! Read more about it here. Now I’m enjoying a nice reward of oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips, early-season candy canes, and writing a paper due tomorrow. No rest for the weary!