[W]hile I suppose the national races could be seen as a referendum on competing pandemic responses, there’s a lot more on the ballot than the presidential race. Via ballot initiatives, voters in several states have the option to directly decide or influence science policy.
Science and Faith
Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve explored the question of just how long it takes to earn a Nobel prize (and the implications for representation). This week I want to take up a similar theme from a different angle. One of the big headlines was the announcement of a room temperature superconductor.
[The 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry] was shared by Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna for their contributions to developing the genetic engineering pathway based on CRISPR and Cas9.
Having spent a little time looking at the Ig Nobel prizes, let’s give some attention to this year’s Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, awarded equally to Harvey J. Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M. Rice “for the discovery of Hepatitis C virus.”
Popular idioms aside, birds can actually be quite intelligent, with some species demonstrating the ability to use tools and to develop complex social dynamics. This despite some substantial differences in the anatomy of bird brains compared to those of mammals, particularly humans.