Gufodotto would like you to read these:

Thursday, May 17, 2007

I've got to get back to the Gym...

Look what's the latest craze! naked yoga!

I came onto this picture while looking for scienceblogs-linking posts on technorati.

I had just received an email from Carl Zimmer regarding the nature paper cited in my previous post. Hopefully he'll blog about it, or at least cite it in his latest post on Herpes evolution, and wanted to check if technorati had updated my own trackback to said post.

Then I got curious about how many links to the general website there were. I can tell you, 127,362 links as of today.

One of the firsts hits was: Susie Bright's Journal:Finally: Naked Lesbian Yoga

This Susie Brights, according to her own world, "writes about sex and politics every day of the week". I understand she publishes books although I've never heard of them.

Anyway, from her post I went onto, a website with tasteful nude pictures. Worth a visit, indeed... once every couple of months or so, I guess.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Herpes learns how to play nicely...

Or, integration steps of a former parasite:

The conventional view of herpes virus infections is that they are either active and harmful, or at best silent and for the time being harmless. But new work on mice suggests a third option: there may be a direct benefit for chronic herpesvirus infection. Latent infection with the murine gammaHV68 confers prolonged cross-protection against a variety of bacterial pathogens, including Listeria and the plague bacillus. The protection is a result of systemic macrophage activation triggered by gamma-interferon. The latent virus thereby sets the level of innate immunity. Not only is latency an active immunologic state, but this activity provides symbiotic benefit.

Taken from Nature's latest issue.

Something that Carl Zimmer will likely write about.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Subscription day.

Inspired by PZ, I subscribed to MySpace and Facebook, although I doubt I'll ever use any of them. Most importantly, I subscribed to the Nature Publishing Group website, just to be part of their Nature Network.

So, if you check the tag for ADME, I'll be there.

And I'll be there for Docking and Scoring too.

Let's see how it turns out. Certainly, this one will be my main blog. Don't have time for another one, for sure.

Still, it is a very nice idea 'cause at the meetups it is possible to meet scientist and like-minded from all fields, and not just your own playground or university. I foresee lots of discussions, and hopefully there will be a Brussel section to which attach for me.

Whoah! Is the whole net like this?

If I look at my blog's visits, more than half come from Firefox!!! This doesn't fit with my idea of Firefox still being minoritary. Is it that my readers are more technically minded than the average internet user? Well, kudos to you for making a good choice, then.

I Just want to visit this place:

courtesy of Botany Photo of The Day

Yeay, that's what I am talking about...

Coturnix has a nice post about a favourite childhood book series of his, but most specifically on the pyramidal scheme of information dissemination used by the three detective boys in the books to gather information. Every boy would phone up to five friends, and they would answer the question or in turn phone five more, and so on.

This comes just right with my discovery of Yahoo Answers, which sucks when you want some scientific knowledge but rocks when, like this morning, you want to know what kind of shirt color I can match to a brown suite and black shoes and belts.

For Science, seed is much better, as are many other places.

Pyramid schemes are a very efficient method of disseminating information, although they came at the price of disseminating it to a majority of people who most certainly do not know the answer asked for.

In the book that I am reading, "The wisdom of the crowds", the same thing is pointed out for decision making: although aggregating individual decision in a collective one is a very good way of finding the right solution to a problem, in practical terms this isn't always possible. It's often better if the decision is left to a group of 'expert' at the condition that they be diverse enough, and they do not influence each other by being aware of the decisions made by others at different times (a phenomenon known as 'cascade').

That's the limit of what's called partecipative democracy, i.e. a political system where every decision is taken through a vote by the citizens. The parliamentary alternative is not necessarily better, and if the theory underlying the book is correct, it would be better for us to randomly select our representatives than to elect them. this way, we'd get a better cut of the population. Now, I am not one hundrd per cent sure but I believe this is how it happened in at least one country of the past, where the member of the "senate" were drawn and had the civic duty of leaving their jobs (I believe with compensation for it). Much like the juries system in the US. May be it was Athens? I don't remember.

Anyway, all this seems to be ticking together, I really love when I find myself involved in such synchronicities.

Yahoo Answers Again and Again...

Monday, May 14, 2007

I am having a blast

I recently registered to yahoo! Answers website. I just needed to find out whether or not my mobile phone would support a given bluetooth protocol.

The website is quite useless for that kind of thing, and seems overrun by teenager looking for answers (duh!) to either existential, or very stupid questions. some even try to make their homework this way, a very dangerous practice. I would never trust an answer given on such a website. Here's why. I have a wicked sense of humour, so it didn't take me long to end up, jumping from one question topic to another, in the "religion" subsection.

And there started the fun, when I saw silly flamebait questions such as:

Muslims- do you support your anscestors killing hindus and breaking their temples down?

Bible want to shave women if they do not cover head. Does bible interested in undershave also?

O Christians, how you pay the royality of each edition of bible if it is word of god?

Glorious Quran is universally one and purest word of God. Why each bible differs with other one?

Isn't this great? I started writing puny answer to each and every one, until... I hit the daily limit!!! LOL!

Now I can stop and go on to more serious business, such as actually doing some paid work, or finish writing up my thesis. time to grow up. ghep.

new piccie of the month widget on the side bar...

Thanks to John Orcutt at Oregon's Trail for the idea.

I will start with one of the most beautiful spots in my island: The Stintino beach, on the extreme northwest of Sardinia, once fishermen village and now holidays' hotspot.

google maps link. (hopefully, one day I will manage to directly link google's map piccies.


Check out Tet Zoo for yet another of Darren's nice pieces on lizards.

He also muses on some huge pig of Georgia, too.

Pharyngula has been absent for quite a while from these pages, but now's back with a vengeance: from there, a cool movie about insect being slo-mo thrown pies and juices at while flying/walking. Plus, the tragedy of an astronomer incompetent enough to believe in ID.

Secret Sex Lives of Animals is now in my permanent blog roll, go and check Kate's piece on bedbug piercing each other during sex, strangely reminiscent of Dr Tatiana's piece on the same subject. She also has more soft porn on Panda (from the BBC).

But the grand stand is for Carl Zimmer, who has two wonderful posts (no, full articles) on Papilloma Viruses evolution and on the completion of the 'Possum genome and what can we learn from it about our own place in natural history.

Wonderful wonderful job everyone. Kudos!!! I really enjoy your writings!

Nothing much to write about.

Slow start of the week, this one...

Am trying to wrap my head around the CV paper, but in fact my thesis is at the prime place. tonight I am due for a couple of hours (at least) of tireless corrections. The idea is to get it done by the end of this week, helped by the fact that thursday and friday are off-work.

Then, there's the move to the new apartment with the lady, which will take up most of my energies.

On the first of June we should be done with cleaning up our old apartments, and possibly putting up the furniture in the new one. The 2nd I am off to Amsterdam for a gawdy trip with my work colleagues, and the day after I'll try to cycle some 40km with my gf's workmate, and nientepopodimeno che Eddy Merckx!

Oh, don't think it's done yet, 'cause the 5th of June I'll be showing off what I've done to a Janssen consociate in Mechelen, Tibotec, where I do hope of landing a permanent position, sooner or later.

Ah ah haven't finished yet: first draft of the paper is due for the 22nd of May, the day after I leave for a week-long course in Oxford, where I'll also meet up some sardinian colleague who've settled up there.

Sounds like a plan. I wonder if I'll manage to squeeze in some holidays for July.