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i-0fbc2243d0aa1ec7e4a49776273f57ae-scalifornia_amo_2007295_tn.jpgThe NASA Earth observatory has some amazing photos of the wildfires in California. I've put a small version of one image here, but you should go to the NASA site and see the high resolution images. The fires are horrible but the images are fantastic. Read more
Welcome Bio256 students! This quarter, we're going to do some very cool things. We are going to use bioinformatics resources and tools to investigate some biological questions. My goal, is for you to remember that these resources exist and hopefully, be able to use them when you're out working in the biotech world. I don't believe that bioinformatics is a subject that you can really grasp without getting your fingers dirty. So, this course will include a lot of hands-on work. My friend and collaborator at Johns Hopkins University has given me data sets from the past three years and ... Read more
If like me, you were a little disoriented and confused when you visited Second Life and traveled through orientation island, then you may like this. The Wired Campus (from The Chronicle for Higher Education) led me to an interesting post from the New Media Consortium and a new place to visit once I get a bit of time to do so. The NMC has set up a special orientation island for educators. From the photos, this island looks like a unusually clean and artistic ... Read more
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
Biology as a second-language: the immersion method Language teachers say the best way to learn a language is by total immersion and even better, spending time in the country where it's spoken conversing with native speakers. See it, hear it, speak it, use it! Put yourself in a position where you must do these four things to survive (or at least find the restroom) and you will learn more rapidly than by any other method. Graduate school serves a similar purpose for scientists. You go from an environment where your fellow ... Read more
Bertalan Meskó shares his strategies for keeping up and gives instructions so you can do the same. He shows how you can save your favorite PubMed searches and have NCBI send you e-mails about new papers. He describes some third party PubMed tools that make pretty graphs. Last, he discusses RSS readers, Connotea, and BioWizard. It's all very helpful and nicely described.Read more
Why the ABRF of course!i-8b04187b7fb64bd408c576af1e9411ee-trace.gif I spend a fair amount time every summer giving workshops for college and high-school teachers on genomics and bioinformatics. One of the things that always surprises them, is the amount of lab work that's carried out by people working in shared, or core lab facilities. For example, if I was working at a research university and I wanted to sequence some DNA, maybe ... Read more
or maybe seminars on parade? They're calling them PubCasts, but I don't think I'll be watching them in a pub. Seriously, SciVee is kind of cute, and has lots of potential down the road, and even has a few unintentional moments of humor right now, but.... It's a bit distracting. I can't watch these without imagining that the speakers are standing on tiptoe, desperately trying to peak their heads above the large bits of text that appear mysteriously on the screen and can't be removed. Considering the technical glitch, it's just a bit ... Read more
Amateur astronomers unite! The pros want your help!

image from Astronomy Picture of the Day, Credit: NASA, ESA, A. Aloisi (STScI / ESA), Hubble Heritage (STScI / AURA) - ESA/Hubble Collaboration

I learned about this from the ... Read more

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