Hi, hello…is it on? Great, okay, here we go

Hi there, thanks for visiting my blog! I appreciate it.

Here’s what you can expect to find in future posts:

    1. Opinions
    2. Thoughts
    3. Dad jokes
    4. Feelings

Most of these will relate to science, usually to biology*. One of the reasons I’m so glad to spend such a vast proportion of my time and energy on science is because of what it is: a thing that happens when a lot of minds get together and enthuse about the world and their curiosity about it. And it really doesn’t get a whole lot better than that. This is how I view and experience science, which means that there are more things I want to talk about, Horatio, than are dreamt of in results/findings/facts.

I mean, for one thing, there’s statistics.

Seriously, though. This blog is not the place to come if you’re hoping for a dry recapitulation of the iconic spandrels paper, nor for the type of socially disengaged discourse that vaunts itself as “objective”. You can find those things in a lot of places, but this is probably not going to be one of them. (I’ve got a post on spandrels all queued up, though–check back in a few days. You can expect dry humor, but not capitulation. See what I did there?)

I have a lot of opinions about the practice of science, and the ones I write about in this blog will be those that I have thought a lot about. Spoilers: I think that overinterpreting your results (or misrepresenting to what extent they can be generalized) is a horrible disservice to everyone. I think that scientists, especially those who are funded with public money, have a duty to speak up in the public interest when their expertise gives them insight into current issues. I think that it is important to think carefully about which type of sums of squares your analysis is using (Yes, really). I think that who is included in the large group of curious minds that makes science happen is important to the robustness and integrity of the results we produce, and that the makeup of the group inescapably affects how those results get interpreted.

In any community, there are exhilarating things, boring things, demoralizing things, and sometimes stuff that is some of each at the same time. It would be silly to pretend that scientists don’t have feelings, and so it would be silly to think that a scientist’s blog (even one written in a professional context!) would be devoid of those. There’s no rationale for the dad jokes, though. You can ask anyone who knows me–those just end up happening.

So, thanks again for reading; I hope you’ll engage with me here on lots of stuff. I’m looking forward to it.

PS I’m still trying to figure out how to add comments here, so the “engagement” bit can actually happen.

 

* If you have somehow managed to avoid the other pages in this blog, that’s because I’m a biologist.