Off The Cuff
What Is It About Research That Makes You Smile?
The Scientist Staff | Dec 1, 2003
Off The Cuff | What Is It About Research That Makes You Smile? Knowing that for every answer you find, 10 more questions are revealed. Now that's job security. --Heather Kiefer, Intelligent Medical Devices, Cambridge, Mass. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction--the third law of physics. As it applies to research: For every brilliant discovery there's an equally stupid mistake. For example, one can spend months purifying a protein, only to spill it on the floor looking at one's
Your Life- or Lab-Partner in Scientific Terms
The Scientist Staff | Nov 2, 2003
Off The Cuff | Your Life- or Lab-Partner in Scientific Terms With my life partner there can be some friction, but it's that gravity that keeps us together. --Leslie Hoyt (mlkh1@aol.com) Approximately 100-kg bilaterally asymmetrical male hominid currently imbibing 100-200 ml of aqueous 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine solution. (Lab partner drinking coffee) --Kevin J. Hricko Sr., Pfizer (kevin.hricko@pfizer.com) Qualitative analysis of external features reveal that the male specimen, Homo sapie
What Question Would You Pose to a Dead Scientist?
The Scientist Staff | Oct 5, 2003
Off The Cuff | What Question Would You Pose to a Dead Scientist? To Marie Curie: Was the discovery of radiation significant enough to warrant your death by radiation toxicity? --Susanne Courtney, Courtney Rainey Group, Toronto To Élie Metchnikoff: Is it harder today to be an acknowledged and famous scientist than, let's say, 50-80 years ago? --Roy A. Dalmo, Norwegian College of Fishery Science, University of Tromsø To Charles Darwin: Now that you're dead and know whether
Science Sybils
The Scientist Staff | Sep 7, 2003
Off The Cuff | Science Sybils What journal and article titles will PubMed list in 2053? "Nano-Molbiol Techniques." G.R. Kantharaj, Don Bosco College, Bangalore, India "Human genes responsible for immortality." Hari Har Joshi, Tribhuvan University, Teaching Hospital, Kathmandu "First functional interface between a (vertebrate) brain and a micoprocessor." Stephan Schuster, Max-Planck Institute, Germany "The rapid generation of speeds greater than the speed of light in space travel."
The Comeback to a 6th Grader Who Says, 'Science is Boring'
The Scientist Staff | Jul 27, 2003
Off the Cuff | The Comeback to a 6th Grader Who Says, 'Science is Boring' "In two years, science will rule your dreams and desires, and you will have no control over it. Hormones are great intellectual stimulators." Frank A. Snyder, MD, Wilmington, NC "Scientists travel into jungles to study cannibals, crawl into active volcanoes, play with dinosaur bones, and blow things up! How can that be boring?" Thalles R. de Mello, The University of Western Australia, Perth "Better hand over the
What Will Your Epitaph Say?
The Scientist Staff | Jun 29, 2003
Off the Cuff | What Will Your Epitaph Say? ATG-August 4, 1965, TGA-February 2, 2050 Peter Eipers, Birmingham, Ala. He'll have to do this experiment all over again Luis da Cruz, Toronto, Canada His negative data never shattered his positive spirit Ilia Davydov, Gaithersburg, Md. Scientists never die, they just reach equilibrium Maria Anna Delgado, Milwaukee, Wis. I'd rather be in the laboratory Andrew Yen, Ithaca, NY function sendData() { document.frm.pathName.value = location
Held in High Disregard
The Scientist Staff | May 4, 2003
Off The Cuff | Held in High Disregard Some (tongue-in-cheek) reasons for not citing important, prior work. "I figured if you're smart enough to read this paper, you already knew that!" Gary Osowick, Taunton, Mass. "The experiment is not repeatable." Eva Barton, Ames, Iowa "My work is so complete that the reference [pales] in contrast to mine." Andres Romanowski, Buenos Aries, Argentina "If it's old, foreign--or--old and foreign." David Johnson, Bethesda, Md. "They don't cite us eith
What's the most creative way you've seen of cutting lab costs?
The Scientist Staff | Mar 9, 2003
Off The Cuff | What's the most creative way you've seen of cutting lab costs? "Opening the lab doors to high school volunteers. It provides inspiration for them and cheap labor for us. --Louis R. Ptak, North Wales, Pa. "Some researchers at our facility have purchased slightly used lab equipment on eBay." --Judith Ochrietor, Gainesville, Fla. "Spitting in tubes in order to conserve lysozyme." --Tom Walter, Oxford, UK "Make it clear to both worker and spouse, that all project costs
What is your favorite or least favorite aspect of your work environment?
The Scientist Staff | Feb 9, 2003
Off The Cuff | What is your favorite or least favorite aspect of your work environment? "My colleague has a brewery for research and teaching in our building. He produces some fine-tasting research." --Dennis T. Gordon, Fargo, ND "This working environment here is a metaphor for the TV show Survivor." --Dan Chavez, Carbondale, Ill. "The worst is to have to show up and say something every week for the lab meeting." --Khadir Raddassi, Boston, Mass. "The dingy cinder block walls of
What Organism Would You Like to See Sequenced, and Why?
The Scientist Staff | Jan 12, 2003
Off The Cuff What Organism Would You Like to See Sequenced, and Why? The rainbow trout. I want to know why an organism with a brain the size of a pea can continually outsmart me. W. Jon Meadus, Lacombe, Alberta The chicken. Then we might finally learn why the chicken crossed the road. I'm sure the answer is genetically embedded! Who knows, the answer may have cosmic implications like string theory. Chris McMahon, Toronto, Ontario The Bonobo, so that hopefully we will fin