Posts Tagged humour

Dear reader we admire your perseverance Grant Jacobs Feb 10

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Originally seen on twitter  is this ‘easter egg’ in a research paper -


You’ll see it’s not the last page, but page 29 of 44. Yes, there is a lot of it.

The paper in question is An Atlas of Genetic Correlations across Human Diseases and Traits by Bulik-Sullivan; it’s currently a bioRxiv preprint (I obtained the PDF file The DOI for it didn’t return me the paper, but it’s listed as doi: I owe seeing this to Joe Pickrelltweeting this, of course.


Just a wee break from more usual fare… I suppose I could add this, too (H/T: Madhusudan Katti)



Other (ligher) articles on Code for life:

Aww, crap.

Undiluted humour: If Homeopathy Beats Science

Observing neurons and 1960s sci-fi geeks

Map shows New Zealand with lowest death rate on earth in 1856, over 11 in 1000 dying

Eye-balling eachother in the lab… Grant Jacobs Aug 10

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Here’s one depiction of what different members of research laboratories think of themselves:

Credits: Matushiq Sotak @matushiq (see link in text).

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Monkey quotes Grant Jacobs Oct 13


I’m a fan of short, whitty, clever or erudite aphorisms. (Well, as long as they’re not too clichéd!)

Ben Goldacre called out on twitter for quotes to put on their speaking tour poster:

@bengoldacre Twitter compo: which quotation about science will go on our @SLSingh @profbriancox @robinince tour poster? Tweet #monkeyquote free tickets

Below is a selection of those offered – for the full list, use the #monkeyquote hastag on twitter. Don’t forget to select ‘All’ to see all the tweets, rather than just the top ones. (And what list would be complete without a Terry Pratchett quotes?)

@StaticKing “I’d rather be a rising ape than a fallen angel” – Terry Pratchett

@Darwins_cat “Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one’s living at it” – Albert Einstein

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All the madness in the world Grant Jacobs Aug 10


Well, sort of – a round-up of the quirky, interesting and merely newsworthy.*

Baron Greenfield has upset some people over, apparently, linking internet use and autism. Professor* Dorothy Bishop responds in this open letter. (* Professor of developmental neuropsychology.)

Deborah Blum describes an almost perfect murder she learnt of during research for The Poisoner’s Handbook.

ERV has an excellent take on media reports that wine prevents sunburn. That story made it to New Zealand too, I believe. She gives a great take-down. Read the rest of this entry »

When children start mooing – a letter to the editor Grant Jacobs Apr 13

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Taking my cue from Peter Griffin’s series of crazy science letters, this appeared in the Otago Daily Times, 12th April 2011 penned by R. Williams of Maryhill, titled GM Milk. I’ll leave readers to their own judgements…

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Darwin Day e-card – but I prefer a tree Grant Jacobs Feb 12

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The American Humanist Society is offering Darwin Day e-cards that you can email to friends. (Hat-tip: @StacyCBaker).

It’s fun idea, but one uses that darn linear iconography again:


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What’s the weirdest university course you know of? Grant Jacobs Jan 27


(Lighter fare while I’m bogged down with a grant application.)

Today I learnt that former Miss Canada finalist, Mary-Lu Zahalan-Kennedy, has been awarded the world’s first Master’s degree in Beatle-ology. Actually it’s a more formal ‘Beatles, Popular Music and Society’ degree, which every newspaper on the planet will no doubt send up.

So, readers, what’s the weirdest degree courses you know of?*

Here’s a just few, to get you started.

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Christmas tree Grant Jacobs Dec 18


This one bioinformaticians (or computational biologists or computer scientists) should ’get’ immediately:

(If any non-computer science readers don’t get it, you’re welcome to ask in the comments. I personally would have drawn it with the presents on the leaves, but that’s me.)

Other lighter fare on Code for life:

Mid-week entertainment – links and news

Fainting kittens – feline myotonia congenita?

Lazy Saturday videos

Science-y reading and open book thread

Describe your fantasy institute

Too much attentiveness leads to inattentiveness

Describe your fantasy institute Grant Jacobs Jul 01


Let’s borrow a meme from DrugMonkey, who is hosting the up-coming July Scientiae Blog Carnival (I’ll put a link in once it’s live). DrugMonkey writes:

I thought it would be fun to revive an old game we played in my grad-lab, ‘Fantasy Institute’. The rules of the game are simple – you have been selected as the Director of a newly endowed research institute. It is your job to decide where the institute will be based, its codes of conduct, its structure, and who you will hire. Dream away! Tell us what would make your institute a haven for scientists. A ‘everyone must leave by 5pm’ rule? A woodland setting with squirrel feeders? Daily shipments from your favourite supplier?

I invite readers to add their favourite ideas, serious, fun or even silly in the comments. What features would you want?

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Wet security attack Grant Jacobs May 05

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Sent in by a reader is this report of a homeopathic bomb:

‘A homeopathic attack could bring entire cities to a standstill,’ said BBC Security Correspondent, Frank Gardner, ‘Large numbers of people could easily become convinced that they have been killed and hospitals would be unable to cope with the massive influx of the ‘walking suggestible’.’

Of course victims would be sent to a specialist homeopathic hospital.

One worries that if this bomb were to fall into a large lake, or an ocean, how infinitesimally powerful it might become and that the resulting blast might blow the earth to kingdom come.

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