Thursday, February 21, 2013

What's New? Death, Neutrinos, Extinction and Mushrooms

A history of dependence upon
animals and they upon us.
What's on the new book shelf today?  Here's a sampling of keyword phrases from book titles just received (in addition to the keywords noted above):

Astronomical Sublime
Brain Architecture
Chemical Reactivity
Forgotten Grasslands
Mediterranean Diet
Spiny Lobsters
Sun's Heartbeat
Toxic World
Woody Vines
World's Climate

Intrigued?  We hope so.  Come see all of the books on the new book shelf.  You can even practice your Japanese while reading about the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Modernist Cuisine author exemplifies beauty and benefit of science

Nathan Myhrvold, physicist and author of Modernist Cuisine, the stunningly beautiful treatise on the science and art of cooking, entertained and educated a very large audience at the AAAS Annual Meeting this evening.  I am so sorry that I could not capture the excitement in the room or the gorgeous quality of his images from my position in the audience. AAAS has made available the video of his talk.

In addition, head to the science library and check out the 6-volume set!  We heard just a tiny fraction of the amazing facts that are jammed into the treatise (did you know an average cucumber contains more water than an 8oz glass of milk? Do you know why a rounded cut of beef brisket cooks more evenly than a block that is more square in shape?).  We also learned that the text in the multi-volume set, if pulled out word for word, character for character, in one linear string would reach to the moon and back.  Impressive as that is, Myhrvoid observed that the text of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter books would reach to Jupiter.  Huh.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

"Online Only" people need libraries, too

The speakers at the session on science in social media (at AAAS Annual Meeting), have ended their presentations with sobering statistics on how many people who are 18-34 years old are "online-only." The great number of students in the science library notwithstanding, it is clear that the way we all find and use information has been transformed in the past 10 years. Science majors, develop your social media skills so you can bring your expanding science knowledge to others (advice from the speakers at the AAAS meeting). Print media like The Synapse and Headwaters have been such welcome additions to publications from campus groups. I hope they will get notice among the online-only folks, too.