Archive for June, 2011

Dark matter claim draws scrutiny

June 30, 2011 Leave a comment

The high-profile claim to have detected a possible signal of dark matter, by the CoGeNT collaboration, is encountering some skepticism, I reported today on Nature‘s news blog.

Categories: Physics Tags: ,

Former MIT professor spared jail for grant fraud

June 28, 2011 Leave a comment

A prompt confession, and letters from senior scientists begging for clemency, helped a former MIT professor Luk Van Parijs avoid jail for grant fraud. Article at Nature.

See also earlier articles on this case:

Former MIT biologist penalized for falsifying data Nature (February 2009)

Data irregularities in the work of MIT professor New Scientist (October 2005)

Did Edwin Hubble have a hand in censoring a foreign rival?

June 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Amateur historians and astronomers are buzzing over claims that Edwin Hubble may have censored a foreign rival. Professional historians are not so sure. Article at Nature.

US patent reform passes House

June 24, 2011 Leave a comment

A bill that should make it simpler for US scientists to patent their inventions has passed the US House of Representatives. See post at Nature.

See also my story in April.

Nature editorial on critique of Stephen Jay Gould

June 22, 2011 Leave a comment

Today’s editorial in Nature discusses the lessons to be learned from the recent critique of Stephen Jay Gould.

See also link to my earlier blog post.

What would Robert Boyle have thought of technical tweets?

June 20, 2011 Leave a comment

Scientists’ novel use of Twitter for technical discourse like journal clubs and real-time data tweets are not so far from the long-winded ways of scientific method pioneer Robert Boyle as they might seem. Article at Nature.

See also the related post about astronomer Mike Brown’s release of data via Twitter.

Science tweeted live by a killer of Pluto

June 15, 2011 Leave a comment

On June 11, 2011, astronomer Mike Brown of Caltech, otherwise known as @plutokiller, took the unconventional step of releasing observations he was making of dwarf planet Haumea live in real time over Twitter. On June 16, I interviewed Brown, again over Twitter, about the science of his observations, and his decision to release them live. You can read a blog post about this and the archived twinterview on Nature’s website.

Post Updated June 18.