1429 posts tagged with science.
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I like to solve problems. How do I get paid to do that?

I've flip flopped on what I want to go to school for and/or what kind of career track I want to aim for. Can you help? [more inside]
posted by motioncityshakespeare on Feb 7, 2016 - 13 answers

Looking for math and science 'jokes' to slip into a D&D adventure!

I've got the chance to run a fun, whimsical sort of D&D adventure for a friend of mine. Yay! She's a bit of a science/math geek, and very fond of The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. So I was trying to think of fun, whimsical science and math jokes and references I could slip in to a sort of 'journey with sights along the way' in the style of TPT. [more inside]
posted by The otter lady on Feb 7, 2016 - 11 answers

What are your favorite health innovation podcasts?

I've enjoyed Tim Ferriss, Bulletproof Radio, Extreme Health Podcast and ReWild Yourself with Daniel Vitalis. What are some other good podcasts that address innovative/cutting edge health & science stuff? A little woo is OK.
posted by falcon42 on Feb 4, 2016 - 6 answers

Tech writer wants to advance in science communications career

I had an entry-level science communications role in quasi-academia. Due to funding cuts I was let go, and fell into a job as a tech writer. But I strongly prefer my previous role and would like to advance in that career path. How do I do this? Career details inside. [more inside]
posted by aperturescientist on Feb 1, 2016 - 3 answers

Surprise! 10lbs of dry ice. What kind of fun can we have?

So we just got a surprise shipment that contained about ten pounds of dry ice. I know there's all sorts of fun that can be had, but I'm unclear on the extents of said fun. Something science-y, or just cool looking, or...? [more inside]
posted by radiosilents on Jan 21, 2016 - 20 answers

How can I know whether someone truly sees something?

I am an anthropologist-in-training who spends time in living with a community with a strong medicine-man institution. The medicine-men claim to see various sorts of spirits, and often in very casual settings, like during walks in the forest or while sitting in the house. They'll say stuff like, "there's one sitting right there. It's red with hair on top." I want to know - is there a scientifically compelling way to investigate whether they actually "see" spirits? [more inside]
posted by mrmanvir on Jan 18, 2016 - 24 answers

How do I JordanCon?

I am travelling to meet my favorite science fiction author at a convention, but I haven't done this before. What do? [more inside]
posted by lunastellasol on Jan 13, 2016 - 6 answers

Applied for a research position, multiple labs responded. What do I do?

I applied to intern/assist at a number of research labs under the same university, and unexpectedly received multiple positive replies asking to meet in person. I don't think each professor knows I applied to other professors at the same university at this point, but they probably all know each other. How do I handle this properly and politely? (I don't want to offend anyone...) Help! (Longer explanation inside.) [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 12, 2016 - 12 answers

Need help identifying eyepiece from an old chemistry/science set

I have a small black eyepiece from my dad's old chemistry set. Its purpose was to teach about isotopes by showing a visual example of radioactive decay. Any clues or knowledge of what the element inside is? Links to original documentation or similar sets? (Bonus question: This set is from the "our friend the atom" era, so, is it actually safe? I hope putting it up to my eye isn't like licking a radium covered paintbrush.) [more inside]
posted by BleachBypass on Jan 6, 2016 - 6 answers

Graphic design for scientific figures

I'm looking for examples of well-designed scientific figures. As a materials scientist I've encountered many horrendous figures that are difficult to understand and read. I've read about collaborations between graphic design and physical science departments, which yield much more attractive and informative figures, but these examples are few and far between. I'm hoping to apply principles from good graphic design and data visualization to my own work. Are there any resources or websites where I can learn more about this?
posted by Aanidaani on Dec 18, 2015 - 10 answers

I think I want to learn German and want to pick a method

I am thinking that I might want to learn German as a language of beer and cheese for career advancement. Good choice? Should I take a class or set out on my own? [more inside]
posted by Foam Pants on Dec 9, 2015 - 10 answers

Redesigning a scientist's personal research website

I'm looking to redesign my personal research site and I'm thinking to use a blogging platform such as WordPress; however, I can't seem to find any good, clean and modern templates. In particular, I would like to add sections for my publications, recent news, scripts I have written, and my upcoming talks / presentations. Does anyone have suggestions for a robust platform and any themes that I could use for the site? Thanks!
posted by Aanidaani on Dec 5, 2015 - 8 answers

Next step beyond Lego?

My son has mostly outgrown Lego but still loves building things from instructions. Challenging things. What are some building kits I could get for him? [more inside]
posted by bondcliff on Dec 4, 2015 - 38 answers

Testing "stepwise" biochemical affinity for multimers?

How would you test whether the affinity of a tetramer for a particular ligand proceeds stepwise, i.e. assuming that the tetramer can bind one ligand per subunit, how would you test whether an initial binding event made subsequent binding events on the same tetramer more likely? I can't think of a good way to isolate a single molecule in solution, so any experiments would have to be on a aggregate population which would make stepwise cascades in affinity impossible to measure. Maybe if the measurement was really really time sensitive? Thoughts?
posted by nicolas léonard sadi carnot on Dec 4, 2015 - 3 answers

Spaaaaaaace! Spacespacespace

I've really enjoyed watching some of JPL's von Karman lecture series on YouTube. I'd really like to have more good quality stuff to watch online about solar system exploration - "good quality" meaning probably lectures and even rather technical ones, but not the slick, graphics-heavy, ominous voiceover discovery-channel sort of stuff (and definitely not the endless PROOF OF ALIEN LIFE ON TITAN stuff that makes searching for the good stuff so difficult). Any recommendations?
posted by Wolfdog on Nov 21, 2015 - 3 answers

Sci fi short story title search, on computers and being human

I am trying to think of the title/author of a science fiction story I read and loved from a couple of decades ago... [more inside]
posted by lgandme0717 on Nov 17, 2015 - 1 answer

How do I co-author a book?

How do I co-author a book? How do I make a contract with the other author? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Nov 17, 2015 - 6 answers

Are you a science blogger?

I'm a young professor working in an interesting but crowded field. The main reason I got into academia is that I love communicating ideas. I also tend to have a stream of side projects, some of which are too small or vague to merit a research paper. And I like writing. So I was thinking of starting a blog of sorts... [more inside]
posted by redlines on Nov 15, 2015 - 7 answers

Experience as a veterinary technician in Canada?

My fiancee is considering a career change and is looking at options in the vet tech field. It seems like there are plenty of job opportunities where we live (Toronto) but not a lot of reliable information about salary, working conditions, etc. compared to info from the US. [more inside]
posted by greatgefilte on Nov 14, 2015 - 4 answers

Microscope fun for toddlers - household substances edition

Dear hivemind: I'm going to bring a 300X video microscope to my daughter's preschool. What easily obtainable substances will be super cool to view? Bacteria are too small, red blood cells are a biohazard. Toddlers could care less about onion skins, cork, and plant vasculature in my experience, and I am not doing anything that requires fixing/staining. [more inside]
posted by benzenedream on Nov 12, 2015 - 21 answers

Looking for a good picture book showing the biodiversity of the Earth

I'm looking for a giant book of life on earth for a kid. A book with real pictures (not drawings) that highlights the biodiversity of the earth. A book with 400+ pages that would have pictures of things like the dragon blood tree, the jewel caterpillar, the banyan tree, the cashew tree, the iridescent sky blue Hoplia coerulea. Not just pigs, zebras, and lions. And not anything framed as "weird!" If there was an updated version of the Illustrated Wildlife Treasury Cards, that would be fantastic and ideal. But I don't see such a thing, so a book will have to do. Any suggestions?
posted by cashman on Nov 7, 2015 - 2 answers

I just want to make crazy science with you

Good sources for science trivia? [more inside]
posted by Sara C. on Nov 3, 2015 - 5 answers

You know, so she can cure cancer or collect cool rocks and stuff.

What can I do to turn a play room into an awesome laboratory for a six-year-old? [more inside]
posted by Missense Mutation on Nov 3, 2015 - 19 answers

Science Fiction story about super children and a Viking warlock

I am trying to find a science fiction story which I read in the late 50s to early 60s. It featured a group of boys in a far future who attend an educational event in an auditorium where they witness a ceremonial ritual involving a group of Viking or Viking warriors and a religious specialist or shaman or priest in a sort of transtemporal portal enclosed by a bubble forcefield. [more inside]
posted by y2karl on Nov 1, 2015 - 0 answers

How much black widow venom would kill you instantly?

My friends and I are having a disagreement. One friend says that if he hypothetically accumulated a "vial" full of black widow venom and injected it into himself that he would die instantly. I think that it would be horribly painful and not instant. Can anyone science me a real answer? No people or spiders will be harmed by this question.
posted by Marinara on Oct 29, 2015 - 14 answers

Help me ID this sci-fi YA book series

I'm trying to remember a books series I read when I was a kid. It was a post-apocalyptic sci-fi YA series (at least four or five books I think) aimed at a Christian audience. [more inside]
posted by fryman on Oct 9, 2015 - 2 answers

Engineering fiction?

I'm looking for more science fiction to read, along the lines of The Martian or Seveneves, where solving engineering challenges is a major part of the story. Lots of technical detail is good.
posted by pombe on Oct 2, 2015 - 31 answers

Seeking "Hyperbrain" Books/Films: Chiang's "Understand", Lucy, Limitless

If I greatly enjoyed Ted Chiang's "Understand", Lucy, Flowers for Algernon and Limitless, what other works along the same "superintelligence", "hyperbrain" or "gifted with superhuman intelligence amongst a world of normal people" theme would I enjoy? [more inside]
posted by WCityMike on Sep 20, 2015 - 23 answers

Jewelry made by melting stuff?

My Girl Scout troop has voted to do the "Science Wizardry" and "Jeweler" badges. I'm looking for a way to combine two of the requirements: "melt something into something else," and any of the steps where they make jewelry. Suggestions? [more inside]
posted by The corpse in the library on Sep 16, 2015 - 24 answers

How would tide-affected life forms function if transported to space?

What life forms from Earth are specifically affected by the moon and tides, and do we know anything about how these plants, animals or other living creatures would be affected by putting them in outer space? [more inside]
posted by croutonsupafreak on Sep 15, 2015 - 5 answers

Where do the natural science geeks hang out?

I'm researching examples of great online engagement focused on the natural world. [more inside]
posted by freya_lamb on Sep 15, 2015 - 7 answers

i triple dog dare ya!

Which accomplishments, artistic projects, records, businesses, enrollments, discoveries, inventions, etc came about as a result of a dare?
posted by divabat on Sep 14, 2015 - 19 answers

Great feats of academia and detection!

I'm looking for stories of clever academic detection. [more inside]
posted by ontheradio on Sep 12, 2015 - 14 answers

"Geniuses" without stellar IQ scores other than Feynman

I'm looking for examples of people who were considered geniuses in science, art, invention and other disciplines, but whose IQ scores were merely respectable, between 100 and 140. Richard Feynman, whose IQ was in the 120s, is a good example. But have there been others?
posted by Beethoven's Sith on Aug 27, 2015 - 8 answers

What activities can students do with astronomy apart from stargazing?

I'm trying to think of hands-on things that both kids and adults might like doing with astronomy apart from stargazing. [more inside]
posted by Sleeper on Aug 21, 2015 - 14 answers

UNpopular Science (and Arts / Humanities) Books

Looking for interesting, readable (if dense) books aimed at professional colleagues, rather than the general public. [more inside]
posted by andrewcooke on Aug 4, 2015 - 20 answers

Where on earth do you get pregnant human pee?

I was looking for a good place to buy equine chorionic gonadotropic (eCG) hormone for science reasons today and stumbled across this listing for the more commonly used hCG. It's listed as being sourced from "Human Pregnancy Urine." Where on earth do biomedical companies get enough human pregnancy urine to distill a compound like this? Is there some sort of secret cottage industry of pregnant ladies selling their pee to biotech companies? Where does the pee come from?
posted by sciatrix on Jul 24, 2015 - 4 answers

Literature with a hook for a science class?

My cousin needs ideas for a joint class she'll be teaching for a college--she teaches literature, her teaching partner teaches science. (Which science, I don't know, but she says it's not relevant and he can touch on most scientific topics to the required degree.) They need suggestions of literature--poetry, short stories, novellas, or short novels--that she can have the class read, and then he can take them through the science of it. [more inside]
posted by theatro on Jul 19, 2015 - 27 answers

The Best Historical, Educational, or Informational YouTube Channels?

I'm looking for YouTube channels that are dedicated to providing education about or insight into interesting subjects. They can have humor in them, but I'd prefer for them to be primarily informative rather than humorous. [more inside]
posted by gregoryg on Jul 17, 2015 - 4 answers

Resources for teaching a STEM elective course?

So the school year is close to starting here and I was recently told I need to teach a STEM elective course. This is a brand new course and there are no real guidelines so I need to build it from the ground up. I have some ideas but I need to quickly find ways to get material resources most of all, but also a strategy to plan a cohesive year-long course. [more inside]
posted by WhitenoisE on Jul 17, 2015 - 10 answers

Where do Grad Students Hang Out Online?

Where do graduate students (especially in STEM disciplines) hang out online for the purpose of complaining about grad school and/or getting support for common grad school challenges?
posted by songs_about_rainbows on Jul 16, 2015 - 7 answers

Faster rate of mutation in bacteria problem in isolated ecosystems?

Spoilers for Kim Stanley Robinson's "Aurora" ahead. So, the story is like this: A multigenerational arkship is on it's way to Tau Ceti, they find their primary target for colonization hostile and discuss whether to move to another planet in the same system, live there in domes while terraforming it. One reason for not doing this is stated thusly: [more inside]
posted by SweetLiesOfBokonon on Jul 15, 2015 - 6 answers

Bedroom decor for a scientifically inclined six year-old

DirtyOldTown and I have a pretty great six year-old boy child who is spending the week at his grandma's house and during that time, we're moving him into a larger bedroom. His last room was Lego-themed, but we want to give him a room that's a little broader and a little less merchandising specific this time around. Really, we are less about a theme and more about filling the room with cool stuff he would like, so that when he comes home and sees it, he'll be drawn to it and start enjoying some independent time. (He never enjoyed hanging out in his tiny bedroom he was in before). Looking for fun (and not overly expensive) ideas for knick knacks, doo dads, wall art, etc. to make an inquisitive junior scientist excited about his new lair. [more inside]
posted by Comrade Doll on Jul 12, 2015 - 21 answers

STEM Mentoring/Educational Resources for a 12-year-old girl?

Hi everyone, My younger sister is 12, very smart, and has expressed interest in becoming a scientist. She loves physics and astronomy, especially, but she may have some untapped interest in other scientific fields as well. [more inside]
posted by themaskedwonder on Jul 7, 2015 - 9 answers

LAZURASNAIL: What happened to the British Museum's revenant mollusc?

In the mid-1800s, a snail spent years glued to a specimen card in the British Museum before scientists realized it was still alive. What became of this snail? Help me solve a scientific History Mystery, AskMe! [more inside]
posted by nicebookrack on Jul 1, 2015 - 17 answers

List these pseudo-courses on my resume - next to my fancy real degrees?

Looking to get up-and-out of my current private-sector scientist position, I've been rewriting my resume to target more senior science jobs with more of a management or strategic character to them. Obviously I've been playing up every relevant aspect of my experience on my submissions, but what I don't have is an MBA. Some of my competitors for these jobs probably do - in addition to their science PhD. I've sort-of taken a few business courses* over the years, though. Better than nothing? Should I list them on my resume? How to word it? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jun 24, 2015 - 9 answers

Failed kiddie chemistry experiment

We tried to do the Iodine Clock Reaction today for the kids, using 1) HSO3 mixed with starch and 2) KIO3. Unfortunately, instead of changing from colourless to dark blue (cue impressed sounds from the kids) there was no colour change at all. No precipitate or apparent temperature change, either, so I'm not sure anything at all happened chemically. Any ideas what might have gone wrong?
posted by thelaze on Jun 21, 2015 - 7 answers

science and art are pretty much the same thing in my eyes

Career-advise me! Fellow mefites who enjoy both the humanities and the sciences: which did you pick for your career, and why? Or: were you able to somehow combine the two? Bonus points if you have experience with the medical field. [more inside]
posted by gemutlichkeit on Jun 19, 2015 - 8 answers

Why the seltzer always explodes?

Why does seltzer explode on the regular but flavored sodas rarely do under the same conditions? [more inside]
posted by atomicstone on Jun 17, 2015 - 5 answers

Spontaneous creation out of nothing

I have a physics question, but my googling hasn't been able to provide anything satisfactory tonight. It's about cosmological models of creation in which NO initial conditions whatsoever are assumed. [more inside]
posted by naju on Jun 4, 2015 - 14 answers

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