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Having babies...with science

Evidence Based Birth is a blog with articles by Rebecca Dekker, a PhD nurse and faculty member at the University of Kentucky, summarizing the best medical evidence for childbirth practices. To start, check out the table summarizing the state of US maternity care to see the differences between current standard childbirth practices and evidence based care. The topics page lists the currently available articles. [more inside]
posted by medusa on Jul 3, 2014 - 40 comments

Evidence-Based Pregnancy

Take Back Your Pregnancy When she got pregnant, Emily Oster, associate professor of economics at the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago, she found herself faced with the laundry list of rules that pregnant women have been handed for years regarding coffee, alcohol, soft cheese, deli meats, and so on. But when she looked at the studies behind the guidelines, she was surprised to see that most of them failed to make the distinction between causation and correlation. [more inside]
posted by kat518 on Aug 13, 2013 - 173 comments

First Person Shooter

When it hits you, no matter how much you expect it, it comes as a surprise — a literal shock, like a baseball bat swung hard and squarely into the small of your back. That sensation — which is actually two sharp steel barbs piercing your skin and shooting electricity into your central nervous system — is followed by the harshest, most violent charlie horse you can imagine coursing through your entire body. With the pain comes the terrifying awareness that you are completely helpless. You cannot move. You lose control of almost everything and the only place you can go is down, face first to the floor. That’s what it feels like to be hit with a Taser.
posted by Horace Rumpole on Apr 5, 2013 - 74 comments

Less is more and science matters

The introduction of a limit on the number of tablets sold in packets of paracetamol has led to a 43% reduction in the number of poisoning deaths. People often question what stops someone from going to different chemists and buying as much paracetamol as they want. However, this question misses the point of the 1998 legislation. The thinking behind the limit on paracetamol pack sizes is that most suicidal behaviour is impulsive. People often use what is closest at hand. So making paracetamol packs smaller means that it is less likely a suicidal person would have ready access to dangerous amounts of paracetamol. [more inside]
posted by Gilgongo on Feb 9, 2013 - 50 comments

" the false equivalence between experts and non-experts"

No, you're not entitled to your opinion [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Oct 12, 2012 - 77 comments

Current state of evidence on whether climate change is causing recent extreme weather events

Is climate change causing our recent extreme weather events? (pdf). A panel of eminent climate scientists lays out the current state of what we know, and what we don't know yet, in this forthcoming paper. Jason Samenow (of the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang blog) nicely summarizes the key points. [more inside]
posted by LobsterMitten on Aug 13, 2012 - 46 comments

SCIENCE!

Friends of Science in Medicine (FSM) is a new advocacy group of senior medical practitioners and researchers seeking to drive "complementary and alternative medicines" from universities around Australia, and to make non-evidence based therapies ineligible for private health insurance. Naturally, this has caused a fair degree of outrage and pushback from the CAM sector.
posted by wilful on Jul 19, 2012 - 90 comments

Gupta Trial Judge Reprimands Law Student Spectator

Benula Bensam, not having landed a summer job, decided to attend the Rajat Gupta trial. She felt that some of the judge's evidentiary rulings were incorrect, and so sent him three letters. The judge, Jed Rakoff, was not amused.
posted by reenum on Jun 16, 2012 - 119 comments

"Under Title IX, a woman is entitled to equal access to everything on a college campus. That includes being safe."

In response to campus advocates and new directives from the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, Stanford University has lowered the evidence standard for cases of sexual misconduct from "beyond a reasonable doubt" to a "preponderance of the evidence". This move, which applied immediately and took effect during then on-going proceedings, was met with praise from students("If the new Standard of Proof bothers you, there’s an easy solution: don’t sexually assault people"), but has proved controversial among civil liberties organizations ("a shocking disregard for fair procedures on campus"), academic scholars ("a declaration of martial law against men...and a betrayal of the Title IX equity law"), and alumni ("The President’s recent decision is all the proof I need to know that the University shows little respect for the rights of students"). [more inside]
posted by Chipmazing on Jul 20, 2011 - 123 comments

Supreme Court: Suppressing fruit since 1920

Fruit of the poisonous tree is a legal term used to describe illegally gained evidence. The logic of the terminology is that if the source of the evidence is tainted, then anything gained from it is as well.

For the uninitiated, such terms used as described make for odd introductions to supreme court arguments (PDF warning) [more inside]
posted by AndrewKemendo on Apr 13, 2011 - 26 comments

"No matter what ideas the human mind generates, they must never be quashed."

New Scientist Special Report: Living in Denial. Includes articles by Michael Shermer, founding publisher of Skeptic Magazine [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 28, 2010 - 37 comments

DNA’s Dirty Little Secret

DNA’s Dirty Little Secret: A forensic tool renowned for exonerating the innocent may actually be putting them in prison.
posted by homunculus on Mar 6, 2010 - 40 comments

The Greatest Show on Earth

Richard Dawkins, the English biologist and public intellectual well known for his passionate defense of a gene-centered view of biological (organic) evolution, and the introduction and development of the meme-concept and a meme-centered view of social-cultural evolution, to say nothing of his strong stance as an atheist has put out a new book on evolution
posted by JL Sadstone on Oct 22, 2009 - 147 comments

How Do We Know What We Know?

For most of us, science arrives in our lives packaged neatly as fact. But how did it get that way? Science is an active process of observation and investigation. Evidence: How Do We Know What We Know? [HTML version, Flash version also available] examines that process, revealing the ways in which ideas and information become knowledge and understanding. In this case study in human origins, the folks from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology explore how scientific evidence is being used to shape our current understanding of ourselves: What makes us human—and how did we get this way?
posted by netbros on Mar 25, 2009 - 15 comments

How reliable is DNA in identifying suspects?

A discovery leads to questions about whether the odds of people sharing genetic profiles are sometimes higher than portrayed. Calling the finding meaningless, the FBI has sought to block such inquiry.
posted by finite on Jul 20, 2008 - 30 comments

Myth-busters have the odds against them

Persistence of Myths Could Alter Public Policy Approach. "The conventional response to myths and urban legends is to counter bad information with accurate information. But the new psychological studies (PDFs) show that denials and clarifications, for all their intuitive appeal, can paradoxically contribute to the resiliency of popular myths." [Via Firedoglake, more at MindHacks.]
posted by homunculus on Sep 5, 2007 - 53 comments

Only one link here!

Apparently, all the exhibits entered into evidence in US v. Moussaoui are available online. Enjoy!
posted by thirteenkiller on Jul 31, 2006 - 28 comments

Dave Schultz, Tie Domi, Bob Probert...

Cofer Black, Director of the CIA Counterterrorism center until May 2002 said before the 9/11 commission: “All I want to say is that there was ‘before’ 9/11 and ‘after’ 9/11. After 9/11 the gloves come off… ‘No Limits’ aggressive, relentless, worldwide pursuit of any terrorist who threatens us is the only way to go…” Since that time there have been allegations of abduction and indefinite detention in secret prisons abroad , abuse in prisons within the U.S. and the suppression of evidence of coercion overseas in confessions in U.S. courts. (Ahmed Omar Abu Ali prev. here). In addition to Amnesty Int’l, it’s getting the U.S. some UN attention as well.
posted by Smedleyman on Apr 7, 2006 - 30 comments

There is a website that successfully argues for the existence of God.Here is the URL.Therefore, God exists.

Over 300 Proofs of God's Existence!
posted by Citizen Premier on Aug 25, 2005 - 170 comments

The real CSI.

If Adam is to be identified, and his killers found, a whole, if short, life must be reconstructed from a tiny, bloodless torso.
Two years ago a small boy's torso was pulled out of the Thames. This fascinating article details how forensic science is driving the investigation in to his murder.
posted by davehat on Aug 7, 2003 - 8 comments

Evidence? We don't need no steenkin' evidence

So they finally arrested Scott Peterson... Modesto Police got their big break. Laci is indeed dead. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, somebody must have killed her, and indeed, Scott is somebody. Seriously: "It was a process of elimination," Wasden said. "At the outset you have the universe to work from. ... we were never able to eliminate Scott." Nothing says "we've got nothin'" like "hair noticeably lighter than before and a new Vandyke beard".
posted by effugas on Apr 20, 2003 - 70 comments

Saddam's bodyguard flees Iraq

What if Saddam does have these weapons of mass-destruction? Hussein's senior bodyguard has fled to Israel with details of Iraq's secret arsenal. His revelations have supported US President George W. Bush's claim there is enough evidence from UN inspectors to justify going to war.
posted by Macboy on Feb 4, 2003 - 49 comments

Ebay. The place to go for collectors...of evidence.
posted by anathema on Jul 22, 2002 - 1 comment

well don't you know the bible was right all along

well don't you know the bible was right all along Just what I was looking for absolutely irefutable and empirical evidence that the earth is indeed flat courtesy of a expert in the field (remove tongue from cheek).
posted by johnnyboy on Apr 8, 2002 - 6 comments

Discarding evidence

Discarding evidence because of a possible Miranda violation. Sure, Miranda serves a (good) purpose but are the scales of justice tipped a little too much in favor of the accused when the entire chain of evidence can be discarded because of a confession of a possibly dubious nature?
posted by owillis on Feb 16, 2002 - 16 comments

So you read the "Madman and the Professor"

So you read the "Madman and the Professor" and thought it interesting. Edward Ruloff is another murdering philologist with the extra cachet that his 1871 trial for killing a dry-goods clerk was one of the first to test the admissability of photographs as evidence. The Supreme Court agreed with lower rulings that they could be allowed; Ruloff was hanged. In 1845, he had been accused of murdering his wife and child and was imprisoned for ten years for the abduction of his wife, but without a corpus delecti, he could not be convicted for the murder of his child. This man is writing a biography of Ruloff; a publisher could do a lot worse.
posted by Mo Nickels on Sep 26, 2001 - 3 comments

Are we as old as coal?

Are we as old as coal? And is the scientific community really scared of this man?
posted by thunder on Aug 4, 2001 - 9 comments

$145 million

$145 million in a search for evidence of Big Bangs! So far the popular vote indicates most are in favor of the spending--whatever the cnn data is worth. Am I the only one who'd prefer it spent on my undergrad work, or even biosciences research?
posted by greyscale on Jul 1, 2001 - 21 comments

The fit continues to hit the shan?

The fit continues to hit the shan? "One (FBI) agent says evidence that he personally obtained - evidence that might have helped McVeigh's case - may have been ignored or not documented by the FBI. "
posted by owillis on May 29, 2001 - 3 comments

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