6 mins

Guiding “questions” for science communication – personal reflections

Science communication guiding principles

A few days ago, I was asked to articulate my “rules” for effective science communication. I don’t actually have a check-list for developing science communications (and I’m not sure that a rigid check list would be such a good idea).  But I do have an informal (and until now not clearly articulated) framework that informs ...

2 mins

Would You Lick Jam Off An Old Man’s Foot? and other important science questions

Would You Lick Jam Off An Old Man’s Foot Or Drink Toilet Water For An Hour? Can you explain how gravitons can escape a black hole?  Or do you have a good answer to the question “why are people annoying?” This is just a sampling of some of the more entertaining and challenging questions from ...

4 mins

I’m A Scientist – where the prize money went

I love books – the old fashioned kind, printed with ink on paper.  As a kid, books were my source of education, inspiration and entertainment.  As an adult, I still find there’s something oddly satisfying about picking up a sheaf of printed and bound pages and immersing myself in them. So it’s perhaps not surprising ...

2 mins

I’m A Scientist 2010 ends, and the winner is…

An hour or so ago, the final winners of I’m A Scientist, Get Me Out Of Here were announced.  To my surprise, I made it to the last two standing in the Silicon Zone yesterday, and have been on the edge of my seat today waiting to see whether I was going to be ousted ...

4 mins

I’m A Scientist – A brilliant British idea that needs to come to the US!

Today was a tough day on I’m A Scientist, Get Me Out Of Here – three live chats almost back to back, followed by the first evictions.  And believe me – even though I live to fight another day, the evictions were traumatic!  But more of that below.  At the end of a long day, ...

3 mins

Welcome to real science!

The way science is taught, the way it’s portrayed on TV and in the press, he way it’s promoted by science-advocates and science bloggers, often seems to adhere to a rather pompous and hubristic view of science as the ultimate bastion of truth and certainty.  So it’s been rather refreshing this week to see a ...

3 mins

Day one of I’m A Scientist – It’s the teens who are training us!

It’s a quarter to one in the morning Eastern Time, and I’ve just polished off the last question of the day on I’m A Scientist, Get Me Out Of Here!  I should be heading off to bed, but I wanted to capture some initial thoughts on this exercise first. I’ve lost count of how many ...

4 mins

A spectator’s guide to I’m A Scientist, Get Me Out Of Here!

If you want to participate in the rather fab science event I’m A Scientist, Get me Out Of Here I’m afraid you are out of luck – unless you happen to be one of the 100 scientists and 8000 teenagers taking part. But you can still get a thrill from watching the competition unfold on-line ...

4 mins

I’m A Scientist – Check out the competition!

Reading the Twitter feeds, it seems that a number of scientists participating in I’m A Scientist, Get me Out of Here have struggled with their profiles.  It’s one thing to design an elegant experiment or write a smart paper – but describing yourself in three words or telling a joke that’s actually funny isn’t something ...

5 mins

I’m a scientist – and I’m going to be hanging on for dear life’s sake!

I can’t sleep, I’m distracted, I keep breaking out in a cold sweat.  And the reason?  I have a deceptively simple question going my head – and I don’t know the answer! The question… well, I’ll come to that in a minute.  I’d rather put the moment of embarrassment off for at least a few ...

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