ComicphysicsScienceUncategorized

Generations: The Story of Women in Neutrino Research (Women in Science 78).

The most powerful force in the study of physics is not gravity or electromagnetism. It is not love, or courage. It is accounting. “But that doesn’t quite add up” has produced heartache and exhilaration in equal measure, and the tantalization created by blank space in the universe’s checkbook has pushed …

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BiologyChemistryComicScience

Milk and Blood: Icie Macy Hoobler and the Science of Infant-Mother Nutrition. (Women in Science 77).

A young mother of the early twentieth century who couldn’t or didn’t want to breast feed was a creature entirely at the hands of bumbling chance.  Doctors of the era prescribed individually concocted replacement formula recipes based on a mixture of patchwork research, folk wisdom, and personal idiosyncracy.  The most …

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BiologyComicScience

Octopuses at Work and Play: Jennifer Mather and Cephalopod Cognition. (Women in Science 76)

On paper, the octopus looks like a mythical beast we made up by combining all of the most outlandish bits from our favorite fictional characters.  It has multiple hearts, like Doctor Who, sophisticated camouflage capacities like the Predator, jet propulsion like Iron Man, the ability to regrow limbs like Madame …

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ChemistryComicphysicsScience & Nature

Gone, Fission: How Lise Meitner was Written Out of the Nuclear Age. (Women in Science 75!)

To fully appreciate Lise Meitner, you have to first forget everything you learned about the atom in high school.  Forget that the nucleus is made up of neutral particles called neutrons and positive particles called protons.  Forget about how electrons live in statistically determined probability clouds outside the nucleus.  Forget …

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AstronomyComicFeaturedScience

Before There was Sagan: How Helen Sawyer Hogg Brought Astronomy to the People. (Women in Science 74)

Before, “The cosmos is all there is, all there ever was, all there ever will be,” there was, “The stars belong to everyone,” the watch-phrase of a woman who spent three decades in energizing the wider world, through her newspaper columns and television appearances, with a profound curiosity about the …

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BiologyChemistryComicScience

Monarch of Crystallography: Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin and the Structure of Large Molecules. (Women in Science 73)

Two scientists. Two crystallographers. Both successful, but one died young after her most significant discovery was snatched from her, while the other lived to a ripe old age after a string of ground-breaking discoveries and a Nobel Prize.  The former, Rosalind Franklin, is a household name.  But the latter, in …

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ComicFeaturedMathphysicsScience

Erasing Mileva Marić-Einstein, The Woman Behind Einstein’s Math. (Women in Science 72)

Content Note: By the end of this article, you are not going to like Albert Einstein much.  If this is a problem for you, if part of your sense of the grandeur of humanity is wrapped up in the sympathetic image of Einstein’s personality and genius, then you might want …

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ComicphysicsScience

Wither: The Many Triumphs and Long Fall of Nuclear Physicist Harriet Brooks. (Women in Science 71)

Reading the life of Harriet Brooks is like watching the gradual, inevitable unfolding of a horror movie.  There’s that same idyllic, promising beginning that suddenly gives way as the heroine puts her hand on the basement door of Ancient Contained Horrors and, no matter how much you shout or plead, …

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