Blogimmuniqué, 1st Feb 2010

By Grant Jacobs 01/02/2010

Just a quick heads’ up to regular readers that my blog, Code for life, will go into a restful state for a few days. It won’t last long! Commenting won’t be affected, so take the chance to wander back through my old posts (use the drop-down menu by year, then month to the right of this page) and say whatever you like. (Well, within reason…!)


To get you started, I’ve included an extra long list of other articles at the end of this blogimmuniqué. Most of the more recent articles have their own lists of suggested readings, so rummage around.

Readers will have noticed that I’ve wandered off into lighter things of late. That’s what happens when the day-job workload takes over… Hopefully when I get back to blogging in a few days I will ’finally’ be able to get back to my more regular topics, biology in general, science communication, computational biology and whatnot. And I’ll finally get that homeopathy series out. (Yes, it’s actually real, it’s just in a jumble of bits!)

Open commenting: did it help? It’s hard to know if the experiment with “open” commenting is paying off. While Code for life is certainly getting more comments, it’s not as if this trial is being conducted scientifically with controls and ’all that’. Seeing as the spam isn’t as troublesome as it might have been, the trial will continue and maybe even become permanent. Any thoughts on this are welcome, feedback would be appreciated. Did opening the comments make a difference for anyone? Or was it just the change in topics that prompted you to comment? Is registration enough of a hurdle that it stopped you commenting when you might otherwise have?

Articles in Code for life you might procrastinate with… (or just generally have fun with)


Ecuadorian Amazonians see Avatar (in 3-D)

All this talk about 3-D movies and TVs is depressing

Animal babies, long snouts (cute stuff)

Singing for science

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

Explore ancient science books on-line

Monday potpourri: maps, malaria in the USA, cholera in Dunedin and vaccines

Neti pots now validated as sound science? (startling photo)

Royal science


Homeopathic remedies in NZ pharmacies

British homeopathy sceptics group aims for sugar high (with Dawkins video)

Time for disclaimers on remedies?, “alternative” or not

GMOs and the plants we eat: neither are “natural”

Genetic tests and personalised medicine

Autistic children and blood mercury levels

Medical remedies-burden of proof lies with seller

Science communication:

Framing or explaining?: don’t frame the science itself

Banished from science writing. Words, that is.

Note to science communicators–alleles not “disease genes”

Three kinds of knowledge about science and journalism

Science journalism–critical analysis, not debate

Sidebar scientists

Scientists can’t write?


Developing bioinformatics methods: by who and how

Retrospective–The mythology of bioinformatics (Most visited article on this blog)

Bioinformatics — computing with biotechnology and molecular biology data (intended as a lead-in into the previous post, but few visit it!)

Bibliographies-why can’t research papers self-document what they are?