getting the images was the hardest part

A lot of our colleagues are interested in bioinformatics and data science. While it is clear that bioinformatics is important, even essential, in modern biology research, there is the question about the levels of programming and computer skills needed for different jobs. I'm not going to answer that question here. Instead I'm going to focus on one end of the problem, that is, how is a bioinformatician similar to a data scientist? I'll illustrate the kinds of skills that are needed for this role by sharing my recent experience of how we moved the Discovering Biology in a Digital World (DWB ... Read more

Yesterday, I wrote about students using science blogging as a way to develop an on-line portfolio and document their skills.  One friend wrote me this morning and asked if my instructions to our students were really as simple as I described. Well, no. In fact, it wasn't easy to persuade my colleagues that we should let students blog.  I had to promise them I would scrutinize every post and make sure no one got in trouble.  Luckily, our student bloggers are responsible adults.   ... Read more
Why should students blog about science?  Don't they have enough to do already? Last Thursday night I participated in a panel discussion about science blogging (see the video) at ScienceOnline Seattle (#scioSEA)(video) and mentioned that we have two students blogging for us at Bio-Link.  A question I saw afterward via Twitter, from @NurhafizPiers was this:
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Calling all scientists and science-fans: you can help with science education by letting students know you're interested. How? Go and comment on classroom blogs and wikis. I've been gradually collecting some blogs from different classes and I've even had some brave volunteers offer theirs for review. So here goes:
  2. Ms. Hoffman's AP class blog
  3. ... Read more
Wow! One of my commenters, Ms. Baker, suggested an entirely new way that scientists can help with science education. The only requirement is that a science class have their own blog. So, if your science class has a blog, let me know, so I can share the URL and maybe recruit some scientists or at least graduate students, to take a look. I think this idea is so great! It doesn't involve any kind of traveling and many, many different scientists can participate, thus minimizing volunteer burn out. It also gives students a way to practice writing about what they do and interacting ... Read more
This morning Bora and I both gave talks in Second Life. Since this was a pretty new experience for me, I thought I'd share my thoughts on it. Ever since the days when I watched cartoons on Saturday mornings, I thought it might be fun to be in one. But when I tried it this morning, truthfully, it was a bit scary. I haven't experienced stage fright like that for quite awhile. Perhaps it was the setting. I was really nervous and I hadn't practiced with Second Life enough to know what to do.
I've been reading quite a bit lately about Universities setting up virtual classrooms in Second Life, so when Bertalan Meskó from ScienceRoll invited me to come give a poster, I decided it was time to take the plunge. Besides, I'm going to be teaching an on-line bioinformatics course this spring for Austin Community College, so this seemed like a good time to find out what the fuss is all about. Tomorrow, Bora Zivkovic (A Blog Around ... Read more