Here’s the thing: while some try to paint comments as a form of democracy, that’s bullshit. 99.9% of comments are bile. I’ve heard the counter arguments about how you need to curate and manage your comments — okay, I’m doing that by not allowing any.
I welcome feedback. Just do it on your own site or on Twitter, Facebook, etc. That small barrier alone removes most of the idiots.
Let’s be totally honest here: anyone worthwhile leaving a comment should do so on their own blog. Very few read blog comments anyway. I’m sorry, but it’s true. Commenting is a facade. It makes you think you have a voice. You don’t. Get your own blog and write how you really feel on your own site.
Earn your voice.
Remember “Arsenic-Based Life”? Well, It’s More Like Arse-notsomuch …
They say that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Last year, Felisa Wolfe-Simon made an extraordinary claim, specifically that she had discovered a bacterium (GFAJ-1, above) that could use arsenic in place of phosphorous in its DNA. That we be what we in the scientific world call a “big fucking deal” (BFD). XKCD even got in on it.
But Rosie Redfield, a rainbow-haired microbiologist from British Columbia, didn’t buy it. She has been trying to replicate the original findings for months, keeping a public lab notebook on her blog.
Long story short: No arsenic in the DNA that she grew up. There’s some technical aspects discussed in this article, but here’s the kicker from Redfield:
“Their most striking claim was that arsenic had been incorporated into the backbone of DNA, and what we can say is that there is no arsenic in the DNA at all.”
They will be submitting their refutation to Science, and we’ll surely hear more after it goes through peer-review. One question remains for me, though. Will Science agree to publish work that’s been discussed on blogs? It’s been taboo before today, but this work couldn’t have been done without them.
I got caught up in the original hype (I was just glad people were paying attention), and I am glad that open discussion is allowing us to get to the bottom of this.
So much for arsenic aliens.
(via Scientific American, image via Wikimedia)
A Fuzzy, Cuddly Depression-Fighting Robot Is The Platonic Ideal Of Cute
Like a non-virtual tamagotchi, the Babyloid is designed to lift the spirits of lonely older people.
“Be as smart as a puppy” is the advice that Matt Jones of BERG has for robots of the near future. You can see that design principle in action with MIT Media Lab’s Boxie robot, but a robot developed in Japan called Babyloid takes it a step further.
Not content with posting judge-y quotes and comments on Facebook, they’d taken to sanctimoniously confronting their friends in person during cocktail parties.
(Photo: Dean Kaufman; Dwell)
Joy, Peace, Love & Happiness. Holiday card, ornaments inspired by paper lanterns. :)
A Bronx woman, who declined to give her name, said that since her husband’s suicide last year, their 4-year-old daughter, Julia, had struggled to discuss her grief with friends. An event like this, she said, allowed Julia to meet children in the same position — and talk about it.
“She was only 3,” the woman said, adjusting the balloon animal hat atop her daughter’s head. “It’s important to talk about him.”
Julia, beginning on Sept. 27, is to attend group counseling sessions in Bronxville, N.Y., for two hours, every other week. As she prepared to make a beeline for the familiar characters across the room, her mother asked what she planned to speak about at her first session.
“Daddy,” she said, smiling. “And Cookie Monster.”
|—||A Movable ‘Sesame Street,’ Where Children Can Grieve, New York Times (via sesamestreet)|