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I have begun an ambitious effort to inventory and assess the concepts I want my students to master. Check out my Conceptual Teaching Assessment Project!
Recent Major Posts
- A modest presentation on Open Information Environments
- Review of What We Made by Tom Finkelpearl
- When Facebook performs a manipulative experiment on its users, the results are interesting, the methods disturbing
- Choosing a more sustainable web host
- Do humans form genetically similar social groups independent of kinship?
- My Evolution 2014 talk is on YouTube
- Evolution 2014: Overall Impressions
- Evolution 2014: Day 4
- Evolution 2014: Day 3
- Evolution 2014: Day 2
Recent Minor Posts
- Back to the old theme
- Water, Alfalfa, China, and a modern Tragedy of the Commons
- New theme in development for this site
- Ben Knight’s “Phyletic gradualism / Punctuated equilibrium”
- A nice synopsis of some reasons for laughter
- This site is now hosted by A Small Orange
- Do cancer cells play cooperate in the Prisoner’s Dilemma?
- The Wallace Darwin Project has a logo
- Recommendations for creating a more student-centered classroom
- Evolution 2014: Synthesis centers can serve as incubators if they buffer researchers from the risk of failure
Category Archives: Adaptation
My good friend, artist Ben Knight, has created a nice chart that captures the difference between two different theories of macroevolution: phyletic gradualism and punctuated equilibrium.
I started off this year’s Evolution meeting early. The conference is — at its core — a four-day affair. But the days leading into the “official” start on Friday evening feature larger workshops aimed at building skills. I chose to … Continue reading
The New York Times “On Separate Islands, Crickets Go Silent“
The Chronicle of Higher Education “Dolphin Talk and Human Credulity” Great short here (and further evidence that TED Talks entice scientists to lose their heads and say unfounded things). Anyone who has carefully watched a child learn to talk comes to realize … Continue reading
The Economist “A potent source of genetic variation in cognitive ability has just been discovered” A new gene variant, KL-VS, appears to account for up to 3% of variation in IQ score; this would be a radical discovery given that … Continue reading
The Chronicle of Higher Education “Animal Magnetism” I still think that we would be appalled and offended if we could literally read the inner emotional dialogue of a cat, but I have to agree with the main contention of Barash … Continue reading
On Being “Reimagining the Cosmos” I always find myself stuck on the fence when it comes to the confrontation between physics and philosophy (and by extension religion). This episode effectively captures my ambivalence. On the one hand, I like that … Continue reading
Once considered clear, the line between ecological and evolutionary time scales is becoming more blurry
The Chronicle of Higher Education “What Darwin Got Wrong” Great article on the importance of better understanding rapid and/or fluctuating evolution! The number of applications to applied human issues is fascinating.
Scientific American “Tiny Plants” article provides a primer on the inter-relationship between ecological and evolutionary change
I am always on the lookout for great popular science articles to assign to my students. What makes a popular science article great? Well, to start with it should address concepts that are core to my classes (admittedly, this definition … Continue reading
The Economist “Caterpillars that blow nicotine at their enemy” I love the combination of genetic manipulation and “arena of death” wolf-spider gauntlet that led to these findings.
Inhabitat “The Biomimicry Manual: What Can Sloths Teach Us About Energy Efficiency?“
The Scientist “A Twist in Evolutionary Game Theory: Biologists demonstrate the instability of employing a selfish strategy in the prisoner’s dilemma game” Nature Communications “Evolutionary instability of zero-determinant strategies demonstrates that winning is not everything” I am so glad to … Continue reading
The Harvard Gazette “Learning through doing“
I have been preparing for next semester’s Evolution of Sex course by looking for new media that might help my students. I just spent a few enjoyable hours checking out Isabella Rossellini’s Green Porno series, produced by the Sundance Channel. I have been aware … Continue reading
In a recent short opinion piece (Scientific American “Creation, Evolution and Indisputable Facts“), Jacob Tanenbaum argues that selectively rejecting evolutionary biology is dangerous to the scientific culture of America. He rightly points out that our populace does not reject science … Continue reading
The New York Times “Exercise and the Ever-Smarter Human Brain” While I think that the finding that brain size and capacity for endurance are linked is interesting and important, I am a bit baffled by this article’s take on the … Continue reading
Neuron “Fractionating Human Intelligence” What is crazy about these findings is that they are novel. Is this really the first time that anyone decided to tackle the question of what different “intelligence tests” measure? The first time that anyone has … Continue reading