I’ve got your missing links right here (20 August 2011)

Because of the Peru trip, I had limited time to read/aggregate this week so this selection of links is a bit truncated and unsorted. Normal service to resume next week.

Top picks

Wow. How Carl Zimmer inspired two scientists (&many more) in their scientific lives.

Guy sees Fibonacci sequence in trees, sets up experiments, develops more efficient arrangement for solar panels. He’s 13. Sadly debunked.

Elizabeth Kolbert’s profile of Svante Paabo in the New Yorker is absolutely masterful. Great piece of long-form writing.

There have been chemists long before there have been chemists. By Deborah Blum

“Zoologically improbable and/or terrifying to small children.” T-shirt please of this, the best museum sign ever.

O HAI! I CAN HAZ CONZURVAYSHUN?? Cool selection of portraits from massive camera trap study

“I’ve a big problem w/ studies built around something that only purportedly exists.” PalMD on a lamentable “biofield therapy” paper in Cancer.


Wow. How Carl Zimmer inspired two scientists (&many more) in their scientific lives.

Cancer – it’s really much more complicated than anyone had imagined

Why is it so hard to kill a cockroach with your shoe?

The Selfish Gene: The Musical.

Gut bacteria may be the missing piece that explains the connection between diet and cancer risk, says The Scientist. Not a lot of evidence at the moment, but a worthy concept.

Preggers plesiosaurs – great long take by Brian Switek on a wonderful fossil

First patent approved for iPS stem cells. Shouldn’t restrict any not-for-profit research

In which Maryn McKenna warns us of yet another way in which we’re all going to die because of bacteria (+ good comments) http://t.co/QVErKK4

Letter to Nature says Homo sapiens is inaccurate. The petition to rename us as Homo dumbass begins here

“There’s always the eensy-weensy possibility that you might save all of humanity.”

Fish masquerades as a piece of coral

‘Flawed’ infant death papers, involving unethical organ harvesting, still not retracted

Due to climate change, wildlife flees for the hills

New Allegations Leveled Against Polar Bear Scientist

Living fossil eel discovered in Palau.”Hasn’t been anything comparable to this since the coelacanth was discovered”

Black Death study lets rats off the hook

This illusion will destroy your brain, says Phil Plait and he might be right

Science graffiti. The last one is particularly great.

What would you do if a male silverback gorilla charged at you, seemingly rubbing his nipples?

Evolve your own design for a new lamp – and then 3D print it

Social networks to meet Home Secretary to discuss restrictions. Twitter gives them the finger. Good on them.

“At last, the field of genomics has something to offer Cheech and Chong.”

Aliens might take greenhouse emissions as reason to destroy humanity. They can have Rick Perry first

Photographer infiltrates Fukushima nuclear plant

Mathematics, Cities, and Brains: What Can A Highway Engineer Learn From A Neuroscientist?

104 rescued frogs die in captivity. Problem: that’s half the estimated size of the wild population

Don’t believe the hype. Human pheromones may not even exist, let alone influence sexual attraction:

Wow! Mabus has been arrested! The point when he started spamming the local police department was probably the clincher.

Meet Commander Shepherd. Great profile of Jennifer Hale, ubiquitous voice actress behind Shepherd & many other computer game characters