Friday links

By Grant Jacobs 10/07/2010

From my open tabs are these links:

A dynamic infographic presents the comparative achievements of different nations in the FIFA World Cup. The choice of statistics have their  flaws, but it’s entertaining all the same.

Bora is (already!) calling for  suggestions for ScienceOnline2011, the annual meeting of on-line science communicators. Chip in. John McKay has offered ’the problem of being a science blogger without a background in science or journalism, a true amateur.’ (I’d write a lot about that statement, but I haven’t time. Share your thoughts in the comments.)

A BBC news story discusses European efforts to look at claims made on ‘health foods’. Quote: ’Of around 900 claims so far examined, a massive 80% have been rejected.’ It’s good to read that their investigations of claims extend to those implied in the names of products. I write this because my impression is that we have this problem in New Zealand with homeopathic remedies, which are not allowed to make a claim for a remedial purpose,* but the names of the products to my reading do. (HT: Ben Goldacre.)

Circling back to the FIFA World Cup theme, PLoS One has a paper investigating if the reading direction of a referees native language has impact on their refereeing decisions. The basic idea is that activities occurring either with or against the direction that their native language runs affect their perception of the event. (They give an example in their introduction of  villains entering from stage right in movies.)


* I forget the exact wording now, but it is to this general effect.

Other articles on Code for life:

Science bite: Longevity gene study has flaws?

Daily Fail attacks experts

Boney lumps, linkage analysis and whole genome sequencing

Blogimmuniqué: who are you?

Describe your fantasy institute

0 Responses to “Friday links”

  • I was a little shocked visiting a health food / vitamin shop the other day. I watched multiply people walk in and ask the shop assistant the likes of “I have been having head aches and nausea, what should I take?”. The assistant would then walk the shopper down an aisle to a suggested product which claimed to have these properties.

    By imitating a pharmacy in both service and environment these stores are putting the general publics health at risk.

    This is further compounded by New Zealand’s lax labelling laws required of ‘herbal’ products and the like.

    I would fully support implementing a similar system as has been done in Europe.