The science blogosphere was abuzz with ScienceOnline 2011 recaps, post mortems, and soul-seeking. The Columbia Journalism Review gave the conference a nice write-up. Dave Munger meditated on the line between jazzing up science and dumbing it down. Chris Rowan pointed out that no matter how well science blogging shapes its outreach, the broader media often fixes the game. Ed Yong worried that science blogging was “stuck in an echo chamber,” and Ryan Somma mapped it. Christie Wilcox tried out what she’d learned about online writing by murdering a darling. And Minority Postdoc started an inventory of diversity in the science blogosphere.
Meanwhile, in non-meta online science news:
- Watch out for the photo of a “cutaneous abscess.” All the antibiotics we’re feeding to livestock are leading to higher rates of antibiotic-resistant infection in farm workers.
- No word on whether the amoeba is now applying for government farm subsidies. The social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum carries its favorite bacterial prey with it, and (inadvertently) cultivates it as a food source. (See also NY Times, original paper in Nature [$a])
- We like taxonomists, really! We just don’t want to pay them. Biology needs taxonomy, but these days no one wants to be a taxonomist.
- Flock immunity. Genetically modified chickens can catch avian flu without spreading it to others.
And finally, here’s long-awaited video of Robert Krulwich’s inspiring ScienceOnline keynote address. Part two, and more, is at A Blog Around the Clock.