Category Archives: scientist

Not enough science in “The Science of ‘Inside Out'”, and other musings on “Gray Matter”

An op-ed column called “Gray Matter” appeared a few years ago in the Sunday Review section of the New York Times with little fanfare or explanation, with the subtitle “Science and Society.”  It quickly became clear that it was intended … Continue reading

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Posted in cognitive neuroscience, communication, mathematics, news media, physics, psychology, reporting, science writer, scientist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Feeling guilty about “smushing” an ant, and other musings about our relationship to animals

I have been following the regular postings on a new Opinionator blog at the New York Times called Menagerie, about our relationships with other animals.  Some of the essays are a little sentimental for my taste, and one was even … Continue reading

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“I’m back” and then back again, still looking for the sweet spot

Back last May, I initiated a blog mechanism that I called “What We’re Reading Now”, which I hoped would give me a basis for more regular, if shorter posts.  That didn’t work the way that I had hoped, for two … Continue reading

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Measles surge years after vaccine-autism scare: science denial comes home to roost

The AP reported this past week that the incidence of measles has surged in the UK since Andrew Wakefield and colleagues first made their report in 1998, now considered fraudulent, that cases of autism are linked to administration of the … Continue reading

Posted in biology, controls, doubt, medicine, news media, science denial, science writer, scientific method, scientist, unintended consequences | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What tooth chemistry says about Neanderthal behavior: a classical example of science sleuthing

It’s only one case.  One tooth from a Neanderthal infant.  One tooth that provides a suggestive piece of evidence for when that infant may have transitioned from mother’s milk to solid food some 100,000 years ago. But the foundation of science built … Continue reading

Posted in biology, controls, evolution, hypothesis, news media, paleontology, science writer, scientific method, scientist | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Our “Darwin problem” is really about power and influence (and doubt)

A key challenge to the public perception and acceptance of science, and to the scientists and science writers charged with communicating scientific results to an interested public, is the increasingly common rejection of mainstream science by influential non-scientists. A long-standing … Continue reading

Posted in biology, blog, book, climate science, doubt, evolution, peer review, reporting, science denial, science vs. religion, science writer, scientist, theory | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Why do women leave science?

I happened across a thoughtful essay this morning on women in science, at the blog zinemin’s random thoughts.  The blogger is a senior postdoc in physics, apparently living and working in the Netherlands.  She highlights two problem areas — cultural … Continue reading

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Welcome!

This is the inaugural post to our new blog, Dissecting Public Science.  As articulated more comprehensively in the Mission statement, our goal is to open an ongoing conversation about how the process of science is represented, or misrepresented, in the public … Continue reading

Posted in blog, climate science, evolution, first principles, fraud, GMO, science vs. religion, science writer, scientist | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment