only in mice…

Just a quickie & a link: Ben Goldacre’s got an interesting post on the total misreporting of several bits of research, in the UK media. (Having read one of the ‘news’ items, on ‘man-flu’, I have to say that in that case the reporter was pointed in the right direction by the researchers themselves. But […]

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a wonderful fossil – but not a missing link

 You’ve probably already seen the following image, as it’s been splashed all over the media recently: From Franzen et al. (2009) PLoS One 4(5): e5723 doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0005723.g001 NB ‘Plate B’ is the ‘counterplate’ of A; while A is complete & genuine, it seems that B was altered to make it appear more complete (& thus more attractive to […]

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great balls of stone!

In this morning’s Herald there’s an item entitled ‘Call to save hilltop boulders’. According to the people doing the calling, the boulders were placed at the top of what is now an Auckland hillock prior to Maori settlement by a group of fair-skinned people, claimed to be Celtic voyagers. Hmmm. One of those campaigning for the boulders […]

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social networking & morality

Reading the UK newspaper, the Telegraph, I see that social networking sites can be bad for your moral values. Scientists say so, so it must be true… Only they didn’t, & it’s not. Ben Goldacre has picked up on this story (along with other examples of overblown reporting in the UK press). The paper on which […]

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opposable thumbs

On my recent epigenetics post, Heraclides pointed me in the direction of an article about polydactyly in cats. It contains the comment that these cats are also known as mitten or thumb cats because they can learn to pick up things, open latches or move objects with near-human dexterity. Well, OK, we had a cat who was […]

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