PART I OF VI
A WORTHY CAUSE INDEED
by David Ng
GRIZZLY BEARS TAKE NORTHERN VACATION
by Bethany Lindsay
SCIENCE GETS ITS FIRST SUPERMODEL
by David Secko
WHAT IS BIOINFORMATICS?
by Joanne Fox
PATENTS AND INNOVATIONS IN BIOTECHNOLOGY: FROM A SATELLITE LOOKING DOWN AT OUR USE OF PATENTS IN THE GREAT PLANETARY SCHEME OF THINGS
by Azar Mehrabadi
ELSEWHERE AND OVERHEARD
by Caitlin Dowling
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A WORTHY CAUSE INDEED
by David Ng
On most mornings, somewhere in the landscape of childrens television, you can hear Taj Mahal singing and Joan Cusack narrating not about sharing, or taking turns, or telling the truth, or even potty training for that matter, but actually on (of all things) science. Funded in part by the National Science Foundation, Im referring to a program called Peep and the Big Wide World, a quaint animated offering which follows the adventures of Peep, Quack, and Chirp (a chick, a duck, and a robin), as they explore and discover all the things that go in their little world.
I know about this show because I happen to be a scientist with a vested interest in acts of science education. And I also know about this show because I happen to have two young children, who find it both amusing and engaging enough to sit still for its entirety.
Of course, my children dont give a rats ass about it being science and all. And they certainly wouldnt even begin to understand the irony of using characters that, in my circle of colleagues, currently represent reservoirs for both the Avian Flu Virus and the West Nile Virus (the duck, of course, has the funniest lines, possibly because he knows that he alone is the asymptomatic carrier).
But at the end of the day, I think that this is all really beside the point.
And that's because the point is this: we should be impressed because the show succeeds in talking effectively to the general public about science. And it does this by being different, creative, charming and yet informative which believe me is no easy task.
In no small way, we are hoping to do the same here. What you are reading is an experiment of sorts, a web publication that will attempt to be, well... different, creative, charming and yet informative. Were hoping to provide an online (and possibly future print) platform that will accept all types of scientific writing. This will include those that plough through material in a journalistic or review style, or those that skip daintily, poignantly or even angrily into creative writing. I suppose our own little holy grail would be to present an assortment of well written science literature in all of its possible connotations.
To express this somewhat esoteric flavor, we have decided to name this project The Science Creative Quarterly. A name that word for word, represents the following: The because we do want to engage people who enjoy good writing and, of course, understand the use of words and grammar; Science because we are about expanding the science knowledge in the public consciousness; Creative because we are interested in exploring the unconventional and literary realms that this project seeks; and Quarterly because, well, we really liked the word Quarterly.
So, if youre willing, I ask that you please give us a minute of your time and take a deeper look. Let us know what you like and what you dont like. Better yet, submit something and allow us the privilege of being impressed and excited with your work. And if you think we need a duck that says funny lines to succeed, please let us know. We are, in reality, pretty clueless about the best way to do this, and its always good to know these sorts of things sooner rather than later.
David Ng is a biochemist and the Director of the Advanced Molecular Biology Laboratory (AMBL) at The University of British Columbia. His writing has appeared in Maisonneuve, Biochemical Journal, McSweeney's, The Journal of Biological Chemistry, Yankee Pot Roast, as well as in his own life science education site, bioteach.ubc.ca. Disturbingly, he has both the means and the expertise to clone himself, but (thankfully) promises he won't.
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archive (of stuff)
submissions (or suggest)
notes (on masthead)
A DIALOGUE WITH SARAH, AGED 3: IN WHICH IT IS SHOWN THAT IF YOUR DAD IS A CHEMISTRY PROFESSOR, ASKING WHY CAN BE DANGEROUS
by W. Stephen McNeil
PHOTO FEATURE: A Photo of a Nice Set of Boobies We Saw at the Museum of Natural History.
by Christopher Monks
by Claire Salvador
THE BESTEST, MOST KICK ASS, HUMAN GENOME PROJECT
by David Ng
EINSTEIN AT PRINCETON
by Jonathan Cohen