68 posts tagged with science and chemistry.
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Genius and Sacrifice in Early 20th Century Chemistry

"Although radiation’s connection to cancer was known and the lab’s own employees had clearly suffered, the Curies made few adjustments to protocol." The descendent of a chemist in the Curies' lab recounts her great-great aunt's discovery of francium, followed shortly thereafter by a long, painful battle with cancer due to radiation exposure. In learning more about Marguerite Perey's life and untimely death a dark question emerges that complicates the cheery family folklore about a scientific hero: why did the Curies' take so few precautions for the health and safety of those who worked in their lab?
posted by thelaze on Dec 7, 2014 - 20 comments

Beepocalypse!!! A Strange Case of Crankery Derailing Environmentalism

Part I: Bee Deaths Mystery Solved? Neonicotinoids (Neonics) May Actually Help Bee Health.
Reports that honey bees are dying in unusually high numbers has concerned many scientists, farmers and beekeepers, and gripped the public. There have been thousands of stories ricocheting across the web, citing one study or another as the definitive explanation for a mystery that most mainstream experts say is complex and not easily reducible to the kind of simplistic narrative that appeals to advocacy groups. We explore the claims by Harvard School of Public Health researcher Chensheng Lu, heralded by anti-pesticide and anti-GMO advocacy groups, for his research that purportedly proves that the class of chemicals known as neonicotinoids are killing bees and endangering humans.
Part II: Bee Deaths And CCD - Flawed Chensheng Lu Harvard Studies Endanger Bees.
Here we examine the specific claim that neonics are responsible for Colony Collapse Disorder—the centerpiece of Lu’s assertions and again see how influential media manipulate quotes and selectively present information to ideologically influence trusting readers.
[more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 25, 2014 - 50 comments

Alexander Shulgin: Godfather of psychedelics has died (1925-2014)

Alexander Shulgin has died at 88. Infamous for TIHKAL and PIHKAL, chemistry manuals for psychonauts, the chemist pioneered psychedelic research primarily through self-experimentation. He is survived by his wife Ann.
posted by bodywithoutorgans on Jun 2, 2014 - 75 comments

The Platinum Club

As part of the ongoing Periodic Video series (previously and more previously), Martyn Poliakoff takes us inside Johnson Matthey, where he shows us some "Super Expensive Metals" — a few of the rare platinum group metals — as they are refined and processed from raw ore into finished products.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Apr 11, 2014 - 11 comments

John Baez on the maths of connecting everyone (and everything) on earth

Network Theory Overview - "The idea: nature and the world of human technology are full of networks! People like to draw diagrams of networks. Mathematical physicists know that in principle these diagrams can be understood using category theory. But why should physicists have all the fun? This is the century of understanding living systems and adapting to life on a finite planet. Math isn't the main thing we need, but it's got to be part of the solution... so one thing we should do is develop a unified and powerful theory of networks." (via ;)
posted by kliuless on Mar 2, 2014 - 17 comments

Are you alive? If so, can you define what that means?

Why Life Does Not Really Exist
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Dec 7, 2013 - 85 comments

Happy Mole Day 2013

Today (10-23) from 06:02am to 06:02pm chemists and other science enthusiasts around the world celebrate the mole! [more inside]
posted by Captain_Science on Oct 23, 2013 - 36 comments

The Leidenfrost Maze

When a liquid is dropped onto a smooth plate that is heated to a specific temperature well above its boiling point, boiled vapor will get trapped underneath the remainder of the droplet insulating it from the hot plate, allowing it to dance around the plate like oil on a wet surface in what is known as the Leidenfrost effect. Intriguingly, surfaces that are grooved into the shape of a saw blade will cause droplets suspended by the Leidenfrost effect to predictably skitter in the direction of the groove, allowing University of Bath undergraduate students Carmen Cheng and Matthew Guy to build a fascinating maze. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Oct 2, 2013 - 32 comments

This ain't chemistry. This is Art.

With the momentous series finale of Breaking Bad just hours away, fans of the show are hungry for something, anything to wile away the time before the epic conclusion tonight. So why not kick back and chew the fat with your fellow MeFites with the help of a little tool I like to call "The Periodic Table of Breaking Bad." [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Sep 29, 2013 - 974 comments

PORCELAINia

PORCELAINia. A short documentary about artist and scientist Bobby Jaber. [Via]
posted by homunculus on Aug 4, 2013 - 5 comments

A Very Secret Garden

Harvard chemists induce microscopic crystal "flowers" to grow on the edge of a razor blade with beautiful results.
posted by quin on May 30, 2013 - 9 comments

Those Atoms are Mighty Fuzzy

16 Golden Retrievers teach all about atoms. SYTL I for one would have probably done much better in chemistry if had been explained this way.
posted by Leezie on Mar 8, 2013 - 26 comments

Sense About Science

With a database of over 5,000 scientists, from Nobel prize winners to postdocs and PhD students, Sense About Science works in partnership with scientific bodies, research publishers, policy makers, the public and the media, to change public discussions about science and evidence. They make these scientists available for questions from civic organizations and the public looking for scientific advice from experts, campaign for the promotion of scientific principles in public policy, and publish neat guides to understanding science intended for laypeople. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Feb 28, 2013 - 9 comments

Culinary Tech

Polyscience is a company at the cutting edge of culinary technology. [Previously]
posted by lemuring on Feb 26, 2013 - 20 comments

Operation Delirium

Operation Delirium. "The military’s secret Cold War experiment to fight enemies with clouds of psychochemicals. Decades after a risky Cold War experiment, a scientist lives with secrets." [Via]
posted by homunculus on Dec 10, 2012 - 44 comments

"This post, dear reader, is 100% about cats."

Screw organic chemistry, I'm just going to write about cats. James Ashenhurst uses (sometimes highly unorthodox!) cat pictures to explain topics in stereocatmistry, starting with On Cats, Part 1: Conformations and Configurations. [more inside]
posted by beryllium on Dec 5, 2012 - 43 comments

The rain in Spain smells mainly of dimethyl-9-decalol

The smell of earth after rain is called Petrichor, and it is caused by Geosmin, a sesquiterpenoid metabolite with the chemical formula C12H22O. Human sensitivity to geosmin is about 10 parts per trillion. (via)
posted by mrgrimm on Nov 28, 2012 - 95 comments

What's gonna happen outside the window next?

Noam Chomsky on Where Artificial Intelligence Went Wrong
posted by cthuljew on Nov 18, 2012 - 55 comments

Burning Mercury Thiocyanide Will Amaze You

Burning Mercury Thiocyanide Will Amaze You (SLYT)
posted by shivohum on Sep 23, 2012 - 66 comments

For SCIENCE!

Science for the people: take a renowned scientist (Nobel Laureate Leon Lederman (Physics), Stephen Benkovik (Chemisty)) and sit them down on a street corner to answer questions.
Also: The No Excuse List (resources to learn just about anything), Minute Physics, Udacity (free, University-level courses online) and PetriDish, a Kickstarter for science projects.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul on Jul 13, 2012 - 7 comments

Is It Moist On Mars?

New report suggests Mars may be full of liquid water - Smithsonianmag.com
posted by The Whelk on Jun 26, 2012 - 77 comments

Weak Interactions

Weak Interactions is a blog that looks at the science in Breaking Bad and the non-science in Fringe.
posted by reenum on Mar 12, 2012 - 59 comments

Tetranitratoxycarbon

"They fit more together, and they look better, and all the holes have to be filled." And with that, 10-year-old Clara Lazen discovers a new molecule, tetranitratoxycarbon. Which can apparently go BOOM if you figure out how to actually make some of it.
posted by Cool Papa Bell on Feb 6, 2012 - 46 comments

Don't try this at home

"I'm banned," he says. "By whom?" I ask. "My landlord," he says. "And the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority." Jon Ronson on DIY science.
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Feb 4, 2012 - 33 comments

Q: What is the meaning of life? A: I don't know, ask the gyre.

Theory of the Origin, Evolution, and Nature of Life, in which the author, Erik Andrulis, proposes an "axiomatic, experimentally testable, empirically consistent, heuristic, and unified theory of life." He also claims to be able to unify physics.....ahem. All this is done using the chemistry notation you learned in highschool. [more inside]
posted by AElfwine Evenstar on Jan 27, 2012 - 53 comments

Oh Look It's The Hangover Ham!

Atlantic Wire: Science's Best Hangiver Cures [more inside]
posted by The Whelk on Jan 1, 2012 - 72 comments

"You kind of expect it to be quite so... WOW!!"

Chemical Reactions. Four minutes of the best moments of stuff burning, breaking, freezing, exploding, melting, and generally reacting in interesting ways. [more inside]
posted by quin on Dec 30, 2011 - 15 comments

Foldit - Crystal structure of a monomeric retroviral protease solved by protein folding game players

Gamers solve molecular puzzle that baffled scientists. The structure of a protein causing AIDS in rhesus monkeys had not been discovered in 15 years of attempts. Players of a videogame did it in ten days. Foldit, the game in question. Abstract. Previously, previously.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Sep 18, 2011 - 54 comments

SCIENCE!

At the beginning of last month, Scientific American unveiled a new network of 47 blogs with 55 bloggers. Their latest posts can be found here. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Aug 2, 2011 - 15 comments

The Cartoon Guide to Life, the Universe, and Everything

Larry Gonick is a veteran American cartoonist best known for his delightful comic-book guides to science and history, many of which have previews online. Chief among them is his long-running Cartoon History of the Universe (later The Cartoon History of the Modern World), a sprawling multi-volume opus documenting everything from the Big Bang to the Bush administration. Published over the course of three decades, it takes a truly global view -- its time-traveling Professor thoroughly explores not only familiar topics like Rome and World War II but the oft-neglected stories of Asia and Africa, blending caricature and myth with careful scholarship (cited by fun illustrated bibliographies) and tackling even the most obscure events with intelligence and wit. This savvy satire carried over to Gonick's Zinn-by-way-of-Pogo chronicle The Cartoon History of the United States, along with a bevy of Cartoon Guides to other topics, including Genetics, Computer Science, Chemistry, Physics, Statistics, The Environment, and (yes!) Sex. Gonick has also maintained a few sideprojects, such as a webcomic look at Chinese invention, assorted math comics (previously), the Muse magazine mainstay Kokopelli & Co. (featuring the shenanigans of his "New Muses"), and more. See also these lengthy interview snippets, linked previously. Want more? Amazon links to the complete oeuvre inside! [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Jun 6, 2011 - 29 comments

Cummingtonite? I'll bring the erotic acid.

From Draculin to Spermadine, Fucitol to Arsole, here is your guide to molecules with silly names. (via kottke)
posted by BuddhaInABucket on Apr 29, 2011 - 15 comments

Cadbury Creme Eggs, Liquid Nitrogen, MRI Scans, and Extra Dimensions

The science education video series Sixty Symbols (previously) explores the Cadbury Creme Egg. [more inside]
posted by KirkJobSluder on Apr 21, 2011 - 26 comments

HOLY SNAPPING DUCK SHIT IT'S A MITOCHONDRION

ZOMGscience.net. For those who think science could use more swearing. [Text is very NSFW, images are fine.] [more inside]
posted by DevilsAdvocate on Jan 30, 2011 - 33 comments

Women of the Royal Society and elsewhere

The Royal Society's lost women scientists. Women published in the Royal Society, 1890-1930. Most influential British women in the history of science. Women at the Royal Observatory Greenwich. Heroines of Science. Women Biochemists, 1906-1939. Women in Science. Previously: The Women of ENIAC.
posted by mediareport on Jan 12, 2011 - 9 comments

Poor Xenon. So noble, yet so alone.

Chemical Party (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by hanoixan on Nov 16, 2010 - 25 comments

“Better living through chemistry.”

Red Gummy Bear + Potassium Chlorate = SHINY BRIGHT EXPLODING FUN. [SLYT]
posted by Fizz on Sep 25, 2010 - 56 comments

Be the envy (and the fear) of all your friends with DIY glow sticks!

Make your own glow sticks! No, not like that! With complete chemical recipes for different colors, information on how fluorescent dyes work, and bonus fun camera light balance behavior. [via]
posted by phunniemee on Aug 25, 2010 - 11 comments

Too much cofffee man

What Caffeine Actually Does to Your Brain
posted by Artw on Jul 13, 2010 - 136 comments

Do Not Try This At Home

You can see that things gradually become more terrifying : Five of the six alkali metals and their reactions to air and water. Learn more at the Periodic Table Of Videos. Lithium, Sodium, Potassium, Rubidium, Cesium (Caesium), and the elusive Francium.
posted by The Whelk on Nov 18, 2009 - 29 comments

Expeditions to the Polar Regions

The Polar Discovery team has documented science in action from pole to pole during the historic 2007-2009 International Polar Year, and covered five scientific expeditions. The science projects explored a range of topics from climate change and glaciers, to Earth’s geology, biology, ocean chemistry, circulation, and technology at the icy ends of the earth. Through photo essays and other multimedia, they explain how scientists collected data and what they discovered about the rapidly changing polar regions. From the awesome folks at WHOI.
posted by netbros on Nov 9, 2009 - 4 comments

What do flaky scalps, skunks, and dead polo ponies have in common?

Chemistry in its Element - a weekly podcast from the Royal Society of Chemistry offering an engagingly-narrated stroll through the periodic table, element by element.
posted by Wolfdog on Oct 29, 2009 - 15 comments

Sixty Symbols

What Periodic Videos did for chemistry, Sixty Symbols is doing for physics and engineering. Some behind the scenes action and general scienciness. [more inside]
posted by DU on Jun 26, 2009 - 13 comments

Genesis Revisited

Genesis Revisited scientifically summarises the scientific field of Creation Science (warning: science) [transcript]
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Jun 22, 2009 - 103 comments

Nature's Elegant Solutions

Imagine nature's most elegant ideas organized by design and engineering function, so you can enter "filter salt from water" and see how mangroves, penguins, and shorebirds desalinate without fossil fuels. That's the idea behind AskNature, the online inspiration source for the biomimicry community. The featured pages are a good starting point. Cross-pollinating biology with design. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Jun 5, 2009 - 13 comments

Today a sewing machine - tomorrow a dirty bomb

Dig out your old Singer sewing machines from the attic and sell them to somebody in Saudi Arabia for a fortune on account of the red mercury they contain. Red mercury allows nuclear bombs to be constructed without the need for plutonium [previously]. Red mercury came originally from Russia. Or from the Nazis. Red mercury was invented to lure terrorists in sting operations. It is a medicine for treating impotency. Red mercury will bring long life. It is cinnabar. It is mercury iodide. It is Lithium 6. It is a Bose Einstein Condensate. It is a ballotechnic mercury compound. It is a codeword. It's a game. It costs $300,000 per kilo.
posted by rongorongo on Apr 15, 2009 - 46 comments

Homework Helper

World of Science contains budding encyclopedias of astronomy, scientific biography, chemistry, and physics. This resource has been assembled over more than a decade by internet encyclopedist Eric Weisstein with assistance from the internet community. MeFi visited Weisstein's Mathworld a couple years ago.
posted by netbros on Feb 18, 2009 - 6 comments

I Didn't Know That

Science Hack is a unique search engine for science videos focusing on Physics, Chemistry, and Space. For example, things to do with sulfur hexafluoride. Still growing, the editors are presently indexing other scientific fields of study including Geology, Psychology, Robotics and Computers. Ever wonder why things go bang?
posted by netbros on Aug 7, 2008 - 6 comments

Let Me Just Roll Up My Sleeves to Make Sure You're Not Dying

Carl Zimmer's Science Tattoo Emporium - "Underneath their sober lab coats and flannel shirts, scientists hide images of their scientific passions. Here they are revealed to all." From the science journalist and writer responsible for The Loom and numerous other published works.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Apr 8, 2008 - 33 comments

Hervé This: the man who unboiled an egg

Hervé This, dubbed the "Father of Molecular Gastronomy", is also known as the man who unboiled an egg.
posted by Lush on Feb 16, 2008 - 19 comments

Elementary, My Dear Watson

Theodore Gray's interactive periodic table isn't the only periodic table online -- another one was posted to MeFi last month -- but I think it's the most gorgeous, informative, and ambitious periodic table I've ever seen, featuring actual samples of most of the elements and their practical uses, a fascinating display of uranium isotopes, and explosive "sodium party" videos and more from Gray's many years of obsession with the elements.
posted by digaman on Nov 1, 2007 - 14 comments

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