4 November 2008

Sciencey things I haven't got time to write about

What with article deadlines looming, top scientists to interview and a 10,000 word thesis to edit, this is really the last thing I should be doing. But hey ho.

In no particular order, sciencey things that have amused me recently:

Grandparents a safe source of childcare
Ha! Press release headlines do make me chuckle. My first thought on reading this one was "What? Why shouldn't they be?" (Followed by images of nans playing Hot Potato with babies). But some people (h'apparently) have been accusing grandparents of having some sort of cavalier attitude to babysitting. "Recent growth in the number of grandparents providing childcare has some observers concerned they don't adhere to modern safety practices," said David Bishai. Who are these "observers" exactly? Where are they? 'Cause I think my nan would be pretty offended by them. Modern safety practices indeed. I'll have you know my nan brought up seven children - eight if you count my dad's imaginary best friend, Christoper. And they all turned out alright. Except for Christopher... admittedly nan did sit on him once when she was getting into the car.

Mohinder "The Scientist/The Hulk/Spiderman/The Fly" Suresh, Heroes
For anyone who doesn't watch Heroes, Mohinder Suresh is a geneticist (although given some of his ropey explanations, I sometimes wonder what university he went to) and part-time superhero/villain of his own making. So, just to recap: at the start of Season 3, Suresh injects himself with adrenaline from the glands of Death Girl (people die when she gets upset) and hey presto, he's a hunk with a head for heights. Off comes the lab coat and suddenly he's super-strengthed up and hanging from the ceiling. All is fine and dandy for about 30 minutes before his skin starts peeling off and he's sticking people to the walls with the gunk seeping out of his fingers... Aside from that, he looks pretty. Oh, why can't we just have a fit scientist, for once?

Charlie Brooker on Brand-Ross
Ummm, not science, but very funny. Also: Media Talk podcast, beginning with anti-Brand comments to the tune of Carmina Burana - inspired. P.S. I hope Russell Brand starts his own podcast and gives the Beeb a run for its money.

Scientists film 'jogging' shrimp on a treadmill

"The experiment was filmed and later released onto the internet where it has been seen by more than a million people.

Some fans have added backing music from the film Chariots of Fire, while others have played the Benny Hill theme tune."

Just watch it. (Via Lucy at Society for General Microbiology - thanks for my mid-morning giggle).

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