BiologyComicScience & Nature

Vibrating Spiders and Waggling Bees: Madeline Girard’s Multi-Modal Menagerie. (Women in Science 57)

It’s not what you say, it’s how you vibrate your opisthosoma while you’re saying it.                                                                         – Ancient Peacock Spider Proverb.              We humans tend to think very highly of our behavioral complexity.  Two people out on a date are a jaunty jamboree of visual, olfactory, and linguistic cues simultaneously …

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BiologyComicMedicineScience & Nature

Blue Babies with Crossword Puzzle Hearts: The Pediatric Cardiology of Helen Taussig. (Women in Science 56)

It’s sometime in the 1930s, and you’re walking into a ward full of crouching children with blue-tinted lips.  Something is wrong with their hearts, something that is preventing their blood from getting enough oxygen, turning the red fluid a deep, thick black.  At the slightest exertion, the children can pass …

"There was perhaps a first vision attempted in the flower" 1883 (source)
BiologyNatureScienceScience & NatureVisual Art

Odilon Redon’s Dark Musings on Evolution

Imagine you are Adam or Eve in the Garden of Eden in a state of blissfully ignorant grace. You reach for the apple from the Tree of Knowledge. As you take a bite your world is rocked by a traumatic paradigm shift. To your horror, the fruit you are eating …

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Primal Screams: Sophie Germain’s Mathematical Labors (Women in Science 55)

It’s a well known fact of humanity that the chances of a group of people electing to do something decent and necessary is inversely proportional to the number of people in that group.  We enshrine and attempt to forgive that principle under the banner of Institutional Inertia, but the fact …

2.5 Gallon Aquarium
BiologyGeekeryNatureScience & Nature

Desktop Aquarium Challenge!

Some aquarist friends of mine and I are doing a “tiny tank challenge.”  Basically, we have to come up with something under 5 gallons that could sit on a desk, and be under $100, and we’re encouraging anyone to try it. Further explanation: The Desktop Challenge! I thought I’d share …

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BiologyComicScienceScience & Nature

The Strangers Within: Lynn Margulis and the Rebirth of Endosymbiosis (Women in Science 54).

  In terms of cell count, ninety percent of you isn’t you at all.  Bacteria, though by mass they only make up about two percent of a human being, account for nine out of every ten cells inside you.  Some of them are beneficial, like the bacteria in your digestive …

AstronomyBiologyChemistryElectronicsfeminismMathPaleontologyphysicsScienceScience & Nature

The Women in Science Reading List: The Twenty Best (And Four Not Best) Books To Read and Own

When I first started collecting biographies of female scientists, I thought the genre, thanks to the historical and systemic neglect of the subject matter, would be fun to collect and relatively easy to complete.  Some Curie, some Meitner, a Franklin or two, and done.  Six years later, and my shelves …