cosmic-engineering

cosmic-engineering:

There are a number of individuals who refuse to accept the science behind evolution. Although everyone should have a healthy dose of skepticism, unfortunately, a lot of individuals reject evolution because of misunderstandings and misconceptions related to the theory. Fortunately, there are a…

Thanks for the introduction!

jtotheizzoe
jtotheizzoe:

Coming to YouTube on August 19th! 
Frankenstein M.D. is a modern re-telling of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, from Pemberley Digital, the same people who brought you The Lizzie Bennett Diaries and Emma Approved, and PBS Digital Studios. The story centers around Victoria Frankenstein (rather than “Victor” from the book), an eccentric and driven MD/PhD student who wants to prove herself in the traditionally male-dominated field of medical research. Basically, this is what we would get if Mary Shelley created a YouTube science show :)
I’m also happy to announce that I’m lending my PhD chops and serving as science consultant for the series, which is SO FUN!!! I’m working hard to make sure the science you’ll see in the series is the real thing. At least in theory. I mean, we can’t really bring frightening creatures back from the dead. Yet.
Check out the full details on the series, the cast, and the premiere here. And, just like the worlds of Lizzie Bennet and Emma Woodhouse, the Frankenstein universe will be bigger than just the videos. Here’s a few links so you can start following the characters:
Victoria on Twitter, Victoria on Tumblr
Iggy DeLacey on Twitter, Iggy on Tumblr


Mary Shelley, the first sci-fi writer.

jtotheizzoe:

Coming to YouTube on August 19th! 

Frankenstein M.D. is a modern re-telling of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, from Pemberley Digital, the same people who brought you The Lizzie Bennett Diaries and Emma Approved, and PBS Digital Studios. The story centers around Victoria Frankenstein (rather than “Victor” from the book), an eccentric and driven MD/PhD student who wants to prove herself in the traditionally male-dominated field of medical research. Basically, this is what we would get if Mary Shelley created a YouTube science show :)

I’m also happy to announce that I’m lending my PhD chops and serving as science consultant for the series, which is SO FUN!!! I’m working hard to make sure the science you’ll see in the series is the real thing. At least in theory. I mean, we can’t really bring frightening creatures back from the dead. Yet.

Check out the full details on the series, the cast, and the premiere here. And, just like the worlds of Lizzie Bennet and Emma Woodhouse, the Frankenstein universe will be bigger than just the videos. Here’s a few links so you can start following the characters:

Mary Shelley, the first sci-fi writer.

mindblowingscience
mindblowingscience:

Lucy Film Hinges on Brain Capacity Myth

On July 25, French film writer/director Luc Besson’s action thriller Lucy opens in theaters nationwide. The premise is that the title character, played by Scarlett Johansson, is exposed to a drug that unlocks her mind, giving her superhuman powers of cognition.  The movie production notes [PDF] elaborate:
“…It has long been hypothesized that human beings only use a small percentage of our cerebral capacity at any given time. For centuries, speculative science has postulated what would occur if mankind could actually evolve past that limit. Indeed, what would happen to our consciousness and newfound abilities if every region of the brain was concurrently active? If each one of the 86 billion densely packed neurons in a human brain fired at once, could that person become, in fact, superhuman?”


The notion that we humans have massive reserves of gray matter just sitting there waiting to be summoned into service has obvious appeal, but there is no scientific evidence to support it. And what’s odd about Besson’s reliance on this myth is that, according to the production notes, he allegedly set out to make the storyline scientifically plausible:
“Although Besson believed that the idea of expanding one’s brain capacity made for tremendous action-thriller material, he was particularly intent on grounding—at least in part—Lucy in scientific fact.”
Apparently he missed or ignored the many scientists who would have surely informed him that the idea that we use only a small portion of our brain (10 percent, the story usually goes) is wrong. As Barry L. Beyerstein of the Brain Behavior Laboratory at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver explained in a piece forScientific American:
“…the brain, like all our other organs, has been shaped by natural selection. Brain tissue is metabolically expensive both to grow and to run, and it strains credulity to think that evolution would have permitted squandering of resources on a scale necessary to build and maintain such a massively underutilized organ. Moreover, doubts are fueled by ample evidence from clinical neurology. Losing far less than 90 percent of the brain to accident or disease has catastrophic consequences. What is more, observing the effects of head injury reveals that there does not seem to be any area of the brain that can be destroyed by strokes, head trauma, or other manner, without leaving the patient with some kind of functional deficit. Likewise, electrical stimulation of points in the brain during neurosurgery has failed so far to uncover any dormant areas where no percept, emotion or movement is elicited by applying these tiny currents….”
Neither do we regularly use only a little bit of the brain at a time, as science writer Robynne Boyd reported in a piece for Scientific American. She quoted neurologist Barry Gordon of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine:
“”It turns out though, that we use virtually every part of the brain, and that [most of] the brain is active almost all the time,” Gordon adds. “Let’s put it this way: the brain represents three percent of the body’s weight and uses 20 percent of the body’s energy.”
Yet just because we are already using our entire brain does not mean we can’t enhance its powers. Exercise and diet can boost cognitive performance. And some researchers think cognitive training can make people smarter.
As for cognitive-enhancing drugs, the few that are available, such as Ritalin and Provigil, are quite the opposite of the compound Lucy is exposed to in the film. Rather than stimulating all of the brain’s neurons to sense everything in one’s environment, these drugs work to help people zero in. The results are a mixed bag, however, as my colleague Gary Stix has observed:
“Most of today’s cognitive enhancers improve our ability to focus—but most benefits accrue to those with attention deficits. They allow the child with ADHD to learn the multiplication tables, but for those with average attention spans or better, these drugs can sometimes usher in comic mishaps.
Instead of cramming for the [Chinese Proficiency Test], as you might have intended, you are liable to get sidetracked into the most mundane of trivialities: you might get up from your textbooks for a drink of water and spend the next two days replacing the leaky plumbing in your kitchen sink. The focus of attention ‘sticks’ to whatever is in front of your face and a friend with a verbal crowbar has to pry you away.
About the Author: Kate Wong is an editor and writer at Scientific American covering paleontology, archaeology and life sciences. Follow on Twitter @katewong.

mindblowingscience:

Lucy Film Hinges on Brain Capacity Myth

On July 25, French film writer/director Luc Besson’s action thriller Lucy opens in theaters nationwide. The premise is that the title character, played by Scarlett Johansson, is exposed to a drug that unlocks her mind, giving her superhuman powers of cognition.  The movie production notes [PDF] elaborate:

“…It has long been hypothesized that human beings only use a small percentage of our cerebral capacity at any given time. For centuries, speculative science has postulated what would occur if mankind could actually evolve past that limit. Indeed, what would happen to our consciousness and newfound abilities if every region of the brain was concurrently active? If each one of the 86 billion densely packed neurons in a human brain fired at once, could that person become, in fact, superhuman?”

The notion that we humans have massive reserves of gray matter just sitting there waiting to be summoned into service has obvious appeal, but there is no scientific evidence to support it. And what’s odd about Besson’s reliance on this myth is that, according to the production notes, he allegedly set out to make the storyline scientifically plausible:

“Although Besson believed that the idea of expanding one’s brain capacity made for tremendous action-thriller material, he was particularly intent on grounding—at least in part—Lucy in scientific fact.”

Apparently he missed or ignored the many scientists who would have surely informed him that the idea that we use only a small portion of our brain (10 percent, the story usually goes) is wrong. As Barry L. Beyerstein of the Brain Behavior Laboratory at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver explained in a piece forScientific American:

“…the brain, like all our other organs, has been shaped by natural selection. Brain tissue is metabolically expensive both to grow and to run, and it strains credulity to think that evolution would have permitted squandering of resources on a scale necessary to build and maintain such a massively underutilized organ. Moreover, doubts are fueled by ample evidence from clinical neurology. Losing far less than 90 percent of the brain to accident or disease has catastrophic consequences. What is more, observing the effects of head injury reveals that there does not seem to be any area of the brain that can be destroyed by strokes, head trauma, or other manner, without leaving the patient with some kind of functional deficit. Likewise, electrical stimulation of points in the brain during neurosurgery has failed so far to uncover any dormant areas where no percept, emotion or movement is elicited by applying these tiny currents….”

Neither do we regularly use only a little bit of the brain at a time, as science writer Robynne Boyd reported in a piece for Scientific American. She quoted neurologist Barry Gordon of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine:

“”It turns out though, that we use virtually every part of the brain, and that [most of] the brain is active almost all the time,” Gordon adds. “Let’s put it this way: the brain represents three percent of the body’s weight and uses 20 percent of the body’s energy.”

Yet just because we are already using our entire brain does not mean we can’t enhance its powers. Exercise and diet can boost cognitive performance. And some researchers think cognitive training can make people smarter.

As for cognitive-enhancing drugs, the few that are available, such as Ritalin and Provigil, are quite the opposite of the compound Lucy is exposed to in the film. Rather than stimulating all of the brain’s neurons to sense everything in one’s environment, these drugs work to help people zero in. The results are a mixed bag, however, as my colleague Gary Stix has observed:

“Most of today’s cognitive enhancers improve our ability to focus—but most benefits accrue to those with attention deficits. They allow the child with ADHD to learn the multiplication tables, but for those with average attention spans or better, these drugs can sometimes usher in comic mishaps.

Instead of cramming for the [Chinese Proficiency Test], as you might have intended, you are liable to get sidetracked into the most mundane of trivialities: you might get up from your textbooks for a drink of water and spend the next two days replacing the leaky plumbing in your kitchen sink. The focus of attention ‘sticks’ to whatever is in front of your face and a friend with a verbal crowbar has to pry you away.

About the Author: Kate Wong is an editor and writer at Scientific American covering paleontology, archaeology and life sciences. Follow on Twitter @katewong.

shychemist

Anonymous asked:

Hey Shychemist. I've been following your blog for awhile and I want to bring up something that seems dated but nonetheless holds to be accurate today. I feel like the girls who consider themselves to be on the science side of tumblr to be horribly mistaken. It's statistically proven that women applicants struggle to get into stem doctorate programs, and rightfully so, they don't belong there. examples- atomic-o-licious, brainsx , adventuresinchemistry, i can't fit anymore but you get it

shychemist answered:

It doesn’t seem dated, your attitude is dated. This is the 21st century.

Women deserve to be in STEM programs just as much as men. I’d wager they deserve to succeed in the Sciences even more than men because of the sexism and misogyny they experience.

They struggle to get in because they’re the minority, and a lot of people who could admit them are sexist (regardless of gender) because of the society they grew up in. Its not through any intellectual weakness. These women are amazing and just as smart as the men in their fields.

You have no right to say these things to these amazing women, many of whom I consider to be friends.

maggi007:

iambaileyrae:

neuro-genesis:

molecularbiologistproblems:

lemisscus:

hammerforscale:

nonlinearfluctuations:

chemistry-of-chaos:

dinostuck:

scientistsarepeopletoo:

adventuresinchemistry:

smilesandvials:

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Wow. That seems like really fucking wrong. And offensive.
And I would love to take some more time out of my day to be pissed about it.
But…
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It seems that I have a lot of fucking science to do. 
So, uh, screw that.
If anybody needs me, me and my lady bits will be getting some fucking science done.

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I’m oddly excited to have been name checked by this shitty anon. Because it means that the very fact that I got into an Ivy League, top 15 science PhD program (where I fucking belong) is a giant fuck you to shitty anon. Also, shitty anons make Lewis sad. Because Lewis is a feminists science hippo.

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imageBest way for me to deal with shitty nonnies who think women can’t do science? DO MORE SCIENCE!!!! MWAHAHAHA

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Crap, I’m a woman biologist. I’d go get another career but I have a groundbreaking thesis on rapid evolution of reproductive isolation between seed beetle populations to finish. 

I’m not a well-known tumblr scientist…but I am a scientist all the same. And while I could probably obtain a more gender-appropriate occupation… I’m pretty content with the fact I’m an atmospheric chemist Additionally, I am also one of the few women who have managed to be selected to intern at NASA’s airborne research program. 

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Do I not deserve a place in the STEM fields, anon? 

Hey ladies! Mind if some physicists join in?

At the CERN visiting the CMS part of the LHC where were were working for 8 months on both computational and experimental work:

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Presenting our research at a conference on Physics of Living Systems:
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And visiting the Wind Tunnel experiment after presenting our research at Max Planck Institute at a Advances in Cardiac Dynamics Workshop

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Yo, I haven’t posted for a while, but I’m doing a PhD in isotope geochemistry and this made me mad enough to come out of the Pb isotope lab and take this ‘selfie’ to make damn sure no-one thinks that girls can’t do science. I do what I do because I love it, and you know what? I kick ass at it. So jog on hateful anon, we’ve got science to do. 

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I have studied nearly every single branch of math and science including but not limited to; geology, astrophysics, mathematics, chemistry, geochemistry, geochronology, nuclear physics, micropaleontology, microbiology, astronomy, logic, physics, biology, oceanography, paleontology, and so many more. The fact that ANYONE has the fucking gall to say that women don’t belong in those subjects is absolutely ludicrous. I work harder than most people I know, and seeing someone tell me that I don’t belong in the field I have decided to dedicate my life to is beyond me. Go fuck yourself if you think that a woman doesn’t belong in STEM programs. Go. Fuck. Yourself. Let me show you how much I actually do, how much work it actually is, and how little of it some uneducated anonymous fuck would actually understand.

imageThese are microfossils that I study. They help with finding oil that allows you to live your life in the comfort you are used to. 

imageThe tedious work of extracting mineral grains that are no larger than a speck of dust. One slip of the hand, and your data is lost. 

imageUsing laser ablation inductively coupled mass spectrometry to measure radioactive decay in microscopic mineral grains. p.s. that single grain on the screen is over a billion years old.image

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Did I mention countless hours of field work which includes hiking with loads over 30 pounds and elevation gains of more than 1000 feet in the scorching heat of the desert or pouring rain in the mountains to collect data? Most of which would push the physical limits of most people, yet this requires constant physical and mental work for 8 hours straight. every. single. day. 

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Or how about presenting research?

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I know I am a successful person, and I am exactly where I belong. If you think otherwise, well, you have a lot of waking up to do. 

This anon makes me really sad. Lady scientists, you most certainly belong here! I love you all!

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This post is so inspiring… it’s great to actually SEE ladies doing their thing in whatever STEM niche they occupy. I support all my female peers in science! (I’m a biochemistry major with a focus on pharmacology, and damn it I WILL be a doctor one day.)

Damn, it must be because I don’t belong and am inferior to males that I got a great job in my STEM field right out of college after being named the top student in my chemistry program.image

Oh yeah, that was after I presented the research I did on environmental chemistry, for which I was awarded a undergraduate research fellowship, at a national conference.

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Fuck da haters.

Hi. I’m Maggi. Chemistry enthusiast. I’m earning my B.S degree in chemistry. My grades and work ethic earned me a analytical chemistry internship with Barrick Gold and a research position at the Sanford Underground Research Facility working with the MAJORANA Demonstrator. I’m going to be working in a clean room helping electroform the purest copper in the world a mile underground. Did I mention that I earned all of this as a SOPHOMORE in college, aged 19? 

Below is me next to a haul truck at Barrick Pipeline complex. (For size comparison, I am almost 6 feet tall. Those things are massive).image

Below is me outside of Sanford Undergraound Research Facility. They do bad ass physics experiemnts a mile underground. I will admit I do not fully comprehend what the experiments are doing. But if you have any questions I will ask my roommate and best friend who is interning there with the physicists to kindly explain. She deals with dark matter, neutrinoless double beta decay and weakly interacting massive particles. image

Below is me and my dad after I just accepted my ACS Undergraduate Award in Analytical Chemistry for 2014. I earned the award out of 80 other students, most of whom are male, and a large percent female. Me being a female did not earn me the award. I was anal as fuck in my labs and in my calculations. I earned it, not my gender.image

I busted my ass in organic chemistry this year. Got a B first semester and an A second semester because I whooped MY OWN ASS in gear. I tutor other students in general chemistry and I FUCKING ROCK AT IT! The student who come to me understand the concepts and improved their scores significantly. 

 I have a plethora of organic synthesis photos I took. And I will blow your mind with how much I know about the experiment. If you want to hear about some, I would love to chat ochem with you :D

when I graduate with my undergrad, I am going to go to grad school to get at least a masters in something. I LOVE organic synthesis. I LOVE pharmaceuticals. I LOVE CHEMISTRY. My options are open right now. I still have two years of my undergrad left. I could fall for physical or inorganic chemistry in the next year.

FUCK OFF ANTI WOMEN IN STEM PEOPLE. and let us fucking live our dreams and lives. I’m going to make your medicines someday. 

 I’m about to follow all the lovely science ladies above, so follow me if you like. I reblog chemistry and science things. I have a chemistry tag that you all can look at if you’d like.

Have an amazing, awe-inspiring day.