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Calling all virologists - important events in virology needed!

I'm preparing a timeline of important virology-related events for work. We have some HIV-related and some bacteriophage-related material as well as some cancer-related stuff and some "greatest hits" (x-ray diffraction patterns, transduction, discovery of interferon). I'd like to expand our timeline to cover more diverse kinds of virology-related stuff. [more inside]
posted by Frowner on Aug 15, 2014 - 8 answers

I have no IDeaL what I'm doing (IDL programming for absolute dum-dums)

So, I recently got selected to do undergraduate physics research this summer. Great! Awesome! Yay me! However, my research advisor has asked me to use something called IDL to analyze tomographic images of compounds and turn them into 3D images. This is good news, because IDL is used a lot by astronomers to analyze astronomical data, and I want to continue my education in astronomy. But, I've never used IDL ever before. I'm not even sure exactly what it is (a programming language?). My question is this: how do I get up to speed so that I can hit the ground running with my research? Difficulty: Research begins in two weeks. Details: [more inside]
posted by runcibleshaw on Apr 25, 2014 - 12 answers

To patent or not to patent, and if so when?

I am a research student who may have inadvertently invented something commercializable. What do I do now? [more inside]
posted by cestlavie on Apr 7, 2014 - 13 answers

PhD-level conservation careers for maximum real-world impact

I'm in a PhD program pursuing a degree in conservation biology. When I finish (and possibly after completing a postdoc or two) I'd like to end up in a job where I can maximize my real-world conservation impact. I'd like to hear some suggestions on how I can do that; lots more detail to be found inside, as well as my reasoning on the subject so far. [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Mar 18, 2014 - 5 answers

How to know your qual research pre-test interview was a success?

Hello, qualitative researchers! I'm doing a qualitative research project. i have a series of interview questions i wanted to ask some people. to make sure the questions were good, i asked them to my pre-test subject. the questions seemed clear and their responses seemed interesting. but is there some more scientific way of saying (or deciding) "Yup, seems good."? I need to write in my thesis how i came to the conclusion that the pre-test was successful. I can see how this would be easy(or more precise) in quantitative research, but i don't have any numbers. How do you do this? And how do you word it? Thank you!
posted by andreapandrea on Feb 9, 2014 - 5 answers

How can a busy scientist prioritize items that are urgent and important?

I'm a research scientist and I sometimes give presentations. Presentations are unique because, while they aren't the most important part of my work, there is a built-in deadline. I can only work on them until the presentation time, and then I won't get another chance to redo that particular presentation. Most other things I can work on until they are done in the order of what is most important. But giving a good presentation is still pretty important. So when I have a presentation coming up it is hard to decide what to work on first. If I work mainly on the presentation then I feel like I am postponing my important regular research, which isn't great. If I work mainly on the research, then I feel like I am resigning myself to giving a more mediocre presentation, which isn't great either—it makes it less likely that people will understand the work and isn't good for my reputation generally. If I try to switch back and forth I lose concentration and energy due to the difficulty of context switching. Do you have suggestions for how to set priorities in this scenario or what has worked for you?
posted by grouse on Aug 4, 2013 - 6 answers

Creating the Ideal Skeptics' Handbook

I want to write an article explaining where to find scientific information and how to evaluate scientific research. Which quality sources and articles would you recommend that I recommend? Please suggest material that has helped you become a better researcher. Which resources have helped you weed out the pseudoscience and poor quality information? How do you determine which journals have a high standard and which are either predatory or providers of disinformation? Which forums and communities do you use when working on problems above your knowledge paygrade? If you were to design an ideal skeptic's handbook for finding and evaluating research, what would you add?
posted by Knigel on Aug 2, 2013 - 17 answers

What was this study where people ate gray mush vs. colorful food?

Somewhere in the last two to five years, I read about a study where a group of women (I believe the women were Asian, possibly Vietnamese or Thai) were given meals that were: (1) either beautifully and colorfully presented, or (2) pureed into a gray mush. The meals had exactly the same nutritional content, but the women receiving the colorful meal absorbed more nutrients. But I can't find any articles or the study itself. I've been Googling up a storm and still nothin'. Anyone remember this, or articles about this? Help me please?
posted by amoeba on Jul 10, 2013 - 2 answers

Are you a neuroscientist? Happy in academia? Want to do science...

So I have been working in an entirely different field for the last years and was never entirely sure about what I wanted to do with my life. I am certain at this point that I want to work in a field which involves, you know, nervous systems. Unsurprisingly, I am thinking of academia. [more inside]
posted by epibatidine on May 26, 2013 - 18 answers

Grinding along the Research Assistant career path

I'm a baby Australian scientist trying to earn experience and cash prior to embarking on a PhD, but landing a relevant job is turning out to be a bit of an ordeal. [more inside]
posted by nicolas léonard sadi carnot on Mar 19, 2013 - 13 answers

Summer research grants / scholarships for science undergraduates?

What are some non-institution-specific scholarships or grants for someone who wants to do primate research this summer? [more inside]
posted by lemoncakeisalie on Feb 6, 2013 - 4 answers

Do you know about any researchers studying human behavior with regard to motivation, habits, and goal-setting, or books/papers about those topics?

Do you know about any researchers studying human behavior with regard to motivation, habits, and goal-setting, or books/papers about those topics? [more inside]
posted by markbao on Dec 19, 2012 - 9 answers

I want to be the next Professor X.

I know I want to study genetics but I don't know where to go from there. What kind of things in genetics did Professor X and the Drs. Suresh on Heroes study? I want to study that. [more inside]
posted by acthelight on Dec 14, 2012 - 10 answers

Blind me with science.

Help me discover recent 'Best Seller' scientific journal articles to read in 2013. [more inside]
posted by deludingmyself on Dec 10, 2012 - 5 answers

Am I doing the wrong thing here?

Science grad school application filter: I have informally (but explicitly) accepted a graduate assistant position (in conservation biology) at my current undergraduate institution. I am now having second thoughts and am wondering what, if anything, I should do about it. Help me, Hive Mind! I don't know what to do! [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Nov 28, 2012 - 8 answers

What's some of the best, most illuminating, and most entertaining writing about conservation bio on the net?

What are some of the best technical blogs out there in conservation biology, biogeography, evolutionary biology, and ecology? [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Oct 29, 2012 - 4 answers

Where can I study bonobos in the United States?

What U.S. research labs conduct bonobo research, preferably at nearby research facilities? I'm looking into summer internships and graduate schools. [more inside]
posted by lemoncakeisalie on Oct 19, 2012 - 10 answers

Is this an offer I'd be a fool to refuse?

I am a senior undergraduate biology student who wants to become a conservation biologist and a professor. I work part-time in a lab at my university, and my principal investigator recently made me an offer that on the face of it seems pretty great. Should I take it? [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Sep 24, 2012 - 28 answers

MSc or PhD?

Wondering whether I should go for the PhD that I wanted when I went back to school, or whether it's more sensible to stay where I am and do a Master's first. [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Jul 1, 2012 - 18 answers

drug addled chimp?

Trying to locate a study in which they gave a chimpanzee (or other ape?) all the hard drugs he wanted (though it may have just been cocaine and/or heroin?) and found that with sufficient care, the subject actually lived a perfectly healthy and long life. [more inside]
posted by imagineerit on Jun 18, 2012 - 4 answers

What was that article about colonies of bacteria acting like actual historical cities?

Help me find an article about bacteria modeling human behavior at a macro level. My google-fu is failing me. [more inside]
posted by gauche on May 7, 2012 - 4 answers

Regaining first authorship on my research work

Can I regain my lost rightful first authorship of a research paper? [more inside]
posted by inbetweener on Apr 6, 2012 - 24 answers

What ways can a person contribute to significant science without being a full-time professional scientist?

What ways can a person contribute to significant science without being a full-time professional scientist? [more inside]
posted by philipy on Apr 1, 2012 - 22 answers

I need some heroes.

I'm looking for reading material written by or about political, progressive scientists who had/have productive technical careers as well as being politically active, and who saw/see their research in the context of political activism. [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Mar 28, 2012 - 11 answers

Just how common are abusive situations in academia? How do you survive and is it even worth it?

My girlfriend is 5 years in to a PhD program with an abusive (verbal, emotional, and mental) PI/lab. This seems to be a common theme in academia, just how common is it? How do you go about graduating if they seem to be working against you (assuming no fault on your part)? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 13, 2012 - 12 answers

Mountains of notes...

Calling all academics and graduate students: Tell me about your workflow for turning a piles of notes and ideas into something that resembles a thesis or research arcticle! [more inside]
posted by snowysoul on Mar 1, 2012 - 14 answers

Take me beyond Wikipedia!

So in a week I'm starting a gig writing questions for a tv quiz show! Where are your favourite online (or offline!) repositories or trivia and amazing facts? [more inside]
posted by yellowbinder on Feb 24, 2012 - 20 answers

How long must a drug company prove a drug safe and effective to win FDA approval?

When a drug company is trying to get the FDA to approve a new drug, my understanding is that they have to demonstrate that it's clinically effective and not acutely toxic for a finite period of time (weeks or months). But how long? [more inside]
posted by toomuchkatherine on Dec 15, 2011 - 11 answers

Spacing Out

What nonfiction book or paper must I read to write a convincing story about an interstellar journey on a generation ship? [more inside]
posted by Forbidden Equine Dentistry on Nov 12, 2011 - 6 answers

Standing on the corner of the road to no regret.

After a few months of looking, I've found another research-related job at my university. Tell me what doors it will open to me that weren't open already. [more inside]
posted by Nomyte on Oct 30, 2011 - 1 answer

So I want to be a tree hugging scientist...

What skills should I be developing while in university as to work as an ecologist, environmental scientist, something similar in the future? [more inside]
posted by snowysoul on Oct 27, 2011 - 18 answers

My first poster!

How do I print a scientific/clinical research poster? [more inside]
posted by abirae on Sep 30, 2011 - 12 answers

Creating Methods of Analysis for Dummies

When developing a method of analysis in scientific research, which rules and guidelines can you follow to make sure that the qualities by which you analyze things are valid, sound, relevant and related?
posted by Foci for Analysis on Sep 3, 2011 - 15 answers

A record of my own undoing.

How do I cope with persistent project failure at work? [more inside]
posted by Nomyte on Jul 24, 2011 - 8 answers

Help an academic organize interviewee data!

I'm a social scientist heading off to do a year of field research, which will include lots and lots and lots of interviewing. What tools to you recommend to keep all your interviewees' data straight, and to show how they are connected to each other? [more inside]
posted by foodmapper on Jun 6, 2011 - 8 answers

The Economics of Scientific Research

What studies and books are there about the economics of scientific research? I'm interested in a few questions including does giving out grants to University based researchers produce more startups and more highly regarded refereed papers than institutions like NIH or CSIRO? The only book I know of that looks at this is the book The Economic Laws of Scientific Research which looks interesting but is also described as a polemic. [more inside]
posted by sien on May 1, 2011 - 7 answers

Hothead wondering whether university faculty or reputation.

Should an incipient PhD student shoot for the adviser or the program? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Apr 26, 2011 - 28 answers

Help looking for a sci-fi story?

I'm looking for a web novel/short story: sci-fi, underwater research facility, end of society, etc. [more inside]
posted by Cpt. The Mango on Apr 26, 2011 - 5 answers

Why do you brace for a fall or slam on brakes?

What is the technical term for the phenomenon of reflexively or instinctively thrusting your foot out to brace for a fall, slam a brake, etc. when fearful of impending injury? [more inside]
posted by 2legit2quit on Apr 11, 2011 - 7 answers

publisher reputation

if I'm looking through a library... does being published with Springer Verglag mean that the research is legit, and does being published with Nova Publishers mean that it isn't?
posted by moorooka on Jan 30, 2011 - 6 answers

It might sound dodgy now, but it sounds great when you're dead.

What positions does "research assistant" translate into in the real world? [more inside]
posted by Nomyte on Jan 4, 2011 - 5 answers

Science friction burns my fingers.

Where can my career take me except graduate school? [more inside]
posted by Nomyte on Nov 22, 2010 - 13 answers

Linux or Windows 7 for scientific computing?

Linux or Windows 7 for scientific computing? [more inside]
posted by tabulem on Oct 27, 2010 - 20 answers

Upgrading to Damned Lies

Please point me to quality books, articles, etc which argue both for and against the use of quantitative research techniques in the social sciences, particularly in political science and public policy. [more inside]
posted by l33tpolicywonk on Sep 28, 2010 - 14 answers

Should I do a biochemistry PhD?

Should I do a PhD with a view to a research career? I'm an undergraduate bioscientist in the UK, and I think science is awesome - is that enough? [more inside]
posted by teraspawn on Sep 1, 2010 - 12 answers

What is a good biography about Marie Curie?

What is a good biography about Marie Curie? [more inside]
posted by burnfirewalls on Aug 27, 2010 - 5 answers

Photos of women from least to most attractive?

I'm looking for a specific chart showing women's faces from least to most attractive. [more inside]
posted by cherrybounce on Aug 12, 2010 - 3 answers

University digital resources - help me take advantage of them!

Beyond the stacks - what library e-resources shouldn't I miss as a new grad student? [more inside]
posted by deludingmyself on Jul 14, 2010 - 16 answers

Avoiding duplicate research

How much money is wasted on duplicate AIDS and cancer research and how do scientists avoid such duplication? [more inside]
posted by HotPatatta on Jun 6, 2010 - 18 answers

Computer podcasts with more science?

Are there any good podcasts on Computer Science research? [more inside]
posted by pwnguin on Jun 1, 2010 - 3 answers

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