Of Schemes and Memes Blog

The Best of Nature Network: 9-15 October 2010


This week saw the launch of the Fourth Paradigm blog, which builds on the recent book of the same name to explore issues in data-intense research:

Here, researchers from around the world will contribute their own views on data-intensive science, creating an ever-expanding collection of timely, thought-provoking treatises. The book was released just a year ago, a short time in the world of publishing but a veritable eternity in the realm of today’s data-intensive science. Thus the blog will serve as a continual update to the book, bringing the latest and, we hope, most provocative contributions to this burgeoning field. Over time, the best of the blog entries might even be gathered into a new edition of the book.

The campaign to protect the UK science budget from expected cuts continued apace. Following on from a rally in Westminster, Stephen Curry blogs about a visit to the Houses of Parliament to officially lobby the government. Stephen Moss, meanwhile writes a stirring account of why science is personally vital, commenting on the modern surgical techniques that recently saved his life. Nicolas Fanget continues the funding theme by arguing the pros and cons of raising tuition fees to help make up shortfalls.

In other stand-out posts, Tom Webb visits a Frontiers of Science meeting, GrrlScientist flags up National Mammogram Day, Viktor Poór wants you to vote for a T-shirt design, Barbara Ferreira argues the case for kangaroo meat and Anthony Fejes tackles a recent article which showed distrust for bloggers.

Science Maps

We’ve now collected together the ten maps of scientific hotspots onto one master map, which will remain permanently bookmarked in the sidebar of this blog for ease of reference. If you’d like to contribute a Google map of a city not already covered in the series, please contact Matt Brown on i.am.mattbrown – at – gmail.com.

And Finally…

Eva Amsen presents a technical paper on optimising home-made mocha. Here’s a snippet:


Mocha 1:

The ingredients of a “mocha” are coffee and chocolate. In previous studies, we have successfully created a cup of hot chocolate by adding one big scoop (as provided by the supplier) of powder to a mug of hot water (unpublished). We have also made coffee of varying strength by adding two or three small spoonfuls of instant coffee to a similar amount of water, and adding sugar or milk to taste (personal communication, unpublished.)


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