16 June 2010

Comments for first half of June 2010

In the course of asking, “What is graduate education for?”, DrugMonkey made a note of how long it takes to get a doctorate. I asked where the data came from.

Unbalanced Reaction asks whether students should get PowerPoint slides for their classes.

Sabina at the Postdoc Career Development Initiative asks whether people should chase the one big paper. That people seriously consider this blows my mind.

Doctor Becca talks about how senior researchers promote their students and post-docs (or don’t). But I’m not sure what a supervisor can do that the student or post-doc cannot.

Boing Boing features four fantastic scientists commenting on a New York Times piece by John Tierney. Dr. Isis accuses Tierney of pulling numbers “out of his ass.” Except that he didn’t. He pulled them from a peer-reviewed journal article. The numbers may be irrelevant or misleading, but they’re not arbitrary. Isis, to her credit, does a much better job of discussing this in the comment section of her blog than in her main post.

Mike the Mad Biologist is betting against Nature Publishing Group in its conflict with the University of California system. I rephrase the question.

Thoughtomics rants against the slapdash use of “living fossil.” But one possible meaning – maybe the best one – got missed.

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