Rivalries, intrigue, and fraud in the world of stem-cell research. This "inside story" from some of the most prestigious biochemistry laboratories in the world can provide grist for any course on ethics in modern science.
PBS has a wonderful new mini-series titled, "The Mystery of Matter: Search for the Elements". At the time of this post, the series is freely available to stream through your local PBS station. (The series is also available for purchase.) The series is broken into three episodes which track the evolution of Chemistry in different time periods through the eyes of seven scientists.
The HaberFilm.com website is a helpful resource for teachers that have interest in using the Haber video in their curriculum. Reading materials and lesson ideas are available. I recently used a lesson that my colleague created directly from the provided materials. You can check out that lesson here. The lesson included some background reading, viewing the video, participating in an excellent discussion and a follow up writing assignment.
Elizabeth Kolbert, one of the best writers about environmental issues, reviews three books about what many consider to be the root of them - population policy.
At the Solvay Conference on Physics in 1927, the attendees included Albert Einstein, Max Planck, Niels Bohr - and just one woman (Marie Curie). Almost 90 years later, why does science remain so much of an old boys' club?
One of the pioneers in digital media and networks is disquieted by the dominance of the digital landscape by a few Siren Servers, who capitalized not on their superior products or expertise, but solely on their ability to extract a profit from each of the bits that make up Big Data. He thinks we all should be paid for our contributions, or at least the system be changed so as to provide incentives real contributions.
Samuel Arbesman, a mathematician and network scientist, uses the idea a half-life as an analogy for the changes in human knowledge that science brings. He discusses both the changing rate at which new science is done and the speed at which old results are replaced by newer ones. The analogy is far from perfect, but it emphasizes some critically important aspects of the processes of science.
I enjoyed so much Dava Sobel's previous books, "Longitude" and "Galileo's Daughter" (both of which were Hal's Picks), that I was eager to read her latest, which was judged "best science book" for Fall, 2011 by Publisher's Weekly.