Archive for: December, 2016

Best Science Books 2016: The Guardian

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, public health, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is The Guardian Robin McKie’s best science books of 2016, History, Nature.

  • The Life Project: The Extraordinary Story of Our Ordinary Lives by Helen Pearson
  • Timekeepers: How the World Became Obsessed With Time by Simon Garfield
  • A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived: The Stories in Our Genes by Adam Rutherford
  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari
  • Reality Is Not What it Seems by Carlo Rovelli
  • A Farewell to Ice: A Report from the Arctic by Peter Wadhams
  • I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong
  • When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  • The Voices Within: The History and Science of How We Talk to Ourselves by Charles Fernyhough
  • Tide: The Science and Lore of the Greatest Force on Earth by Hugh Aldersey-Williams
  • Blitzed: Drugs in Nazi Germany by Norman Ohler
  • Being a Beast: Adventures Across the Species Divide by Charles Foster
  • The Ethical Carnivore: My Year Killing to Eat by Louise Gray
  • Orison for a Curlew: In Search for a bird on the edge of extinction by Horatio Clare
  • Shallow Seas by Peter J. Hayward
  • Falcons by Richard Sale
  • Slugs and Snails by Robert Cameron
  • The Most Perfect Thing: Inside (and Outside) a Bird's Egg by Tim Birkhead
  • The Nature of Autumn by Jim Crumley
  • Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, each edited by Melissa Harrison
  • Arboreal: A Collection of New Woodland Writing edited by Adrian Cooper
  • A Tale of Trees: The Battle to Save Britain's Ancient Woodland by Derek Niemann
  • The Wood for the Trees by Richard Fortey
  • Knowing Your Place: Wildlife in Shingle Street by Jeremy Mynott
  • The Big Cat Man: An Autobiography by Jonathan Scott
  • No Way But Gentlenesse: A Memoir of How Kes, My Kestrel, Changed My Life by Richard Hines
  • A Kestrel for a Knave by Barry Hines
  • The Outrun by Amy Liptrot
  • Fingers in the Sparkle Jar: A Memoir by Chris Packham

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

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Around the Web: Celebrating the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute at The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital

I don't have the time right now to do this justice, so I'll just lay out the story over the last year or so and let you, faithful reader, follow the thread. This is an amazing story.

This is an amazing initiative at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital at McGill University in Montreal.

From the press release:

McGill University announces a transformative $20 million donation to the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital


Tanenbaum Open Science Institute to open new horizons and accelerate discovery in neuroscience

The Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, was present today at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (MNI) for the announcement of an important donation of $20 million by the Larry and Judy Tanenbaum family. This transformative gift will help to establish the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute, a bold initiative that will facilitate the sharing of neuroscience findings worldwide to accelerate the discovery of leading edge therapeutics to treat patients suffering from neurological diseases.

‟Today, we take an important step forward in opening up new horizons in neuroscience research and discovery,” said Mr. Larry Tanenbaum. ‟Our digital world provides for unprecedented opportunities to leverage advances in technology to the benefit of science. That is what we are celebrating here today: the transformation of research, the removal of barriers, the breaking of silos and, most of all, the courage of researchers to put patients and progress ahead of all other considerations.”

Neuroscience has reached a new frontier, and advances in technology now allow scientists to better understand the brain and all its complexities in ways that were previously deemed impossible. The sharing of research findings amongst scientists is critical, not only due to the sheer scale of data involved, but also because diseases of the brain and the nervous system are amongst the most compelling unmet medical needs of our time.

Neurological diseases, mental illnesses, addictions, and brain and spinal cord injuries directly impact 1 in 3 Canadians, representing approximately 11 million people across the country.

“As internationally-recognized leaders in the field of brain research, we are uniquely placed to deliver on this ambitious initiative and reinforce our reputation as an institution that drives innovation, discovery and advanced patient care,” said Dr. Guy Rouleau, Director of the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital and Chair of McGill University’s Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery. “Part of the Tanenbaum family’s donation will be used to incentivize other Canadian researchers and institutions to adopt an Open Science model, thus strengthening the network of like-minded institutes working in this field.”

‟We thank the Tanenbaum family for this generous investment, which allows us to further accelerate progress to meet the needs of patients,ˮ said Professor Suzanne Fortier, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University. ‟The Open Science movement is gaining momentum, with global initiatives underway in the European Union, Japan and the United States. The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital will become the first academic institute worldwide to fully embrace Open Science. The Tanenbaum Open Science Institute will set the global standard for this movement and position McGill, Montreal, Quebec and Canada at the forefront of scientific progress.ˮ

The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital

The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital – The Neuro – is a world-leading destination for brain research and advanced patient care. Since its founding in 1934 by renowned neurosurgeon Dr. Wilder Penfield, The Neuro has grown to be the largest specialized neuroscience research and clinical center in Canada, and one of the largest in the world. The seamless integration of research, patient care, and training of the world’s top minds make The Neuro uniquely positioned to have a significant impact on the understanding and treatment of nervous system disorders. The Montreal Neurological Institute is a McGill University research and teaching institute. The Montreal Neurological Hospital is part of the Neuroscience Mission of the McGill University Health Centre. For more information, please visit www.theneuro.ca

About McGill University

McGill University is one of Canada’s top institutions of higher learning and one of the leading universities in the world. With students coming to McGill from some 150 countries, its student body is the most internationally diverse of any research-intensive university in the country. Its 11 faculties and 11 professional schools offer more than 300 programs of study to some 40,000 graduate, undergraduate and continuing studies students. McGill ranks 1st in Canada among medical-doctoral universities (Maclean’s) and 24th in the world (QS World University Rankings).

Source: The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital, McGill University

Contact Information
Contact: Shawn Hayward
Organization: Montreal Neurological Institute
Email: shawn.hayward@mcgill.ca
Office Phone: 514-398-3376

Secondary Contact Information
Contact: Cynthia Lee
Organization: McGill University
Secondary Email: cynthia.lee@mcgill.ca
Office Phone: 514-398-6754

 

And their commitment to open science is described here. While it doesn't focus so much on research outputs such as articles (Which I guess will mostly be covered under the Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications), I'm very pleased to see code, data sharing and no IP protection emphasized. On the other hand, item number five in the list below is a partial escape clause for researchers (and others) at the Neuro who aren't quite on board. Which is understandable. Let's just hope that over time they are able to shift their culture such that researchers at least won't feel the need to decline participation in open science initiatives.

A Ten-Year Mission
Within the next ten years, we aim to transform many brain disorders from chronic or terminal to treatable, or even curable, conditions. The main objective of the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute is to accelerate the discovery of novel therapeutics to treat patients suffering from neurological disease.

We want to reduce the human and socio-economic burden of psychiatric and neurological illnesses, and improve the mental health, quality of life, and productivity of people around the world.

Our Principles
Open Science at the Montreal Neurological Institute is based on five guiding principles:

1. Share scientific data and resources
MNI researchers will render all positive and negative numerical data, models used, data sources, reagents, algorithms, software and other scientific resources publicly available no later than the publication date of the first article that relies on this data or resource.

2. Open external research partnerships
All data and scientific resources generated through research partnerships – whether with commercial, philanthropic, or public sectors – are to be released on the same basis as set out in Principle 1.

3. Share research participants' contributions and protect their rights

The Neuro Open Science Clinical, Biological, Imaging, and Genetic data (NeurO CBIG) Repository will maximize the long-term value of contributions made by research participants and the scientific resources created by MNI researchers and their collaborators. In the conduct of the NeurO CBIG, the MNI recognizes the primacy of safeguarding the dignity and privacy of patient-participants, and respecting the rights and duties owed them through the informed consent process.

4. Do not file patents
Subject to patient confidentiality and informed consent given, neither the MNI nor its researchers in their capacity as employees or consultants of the McGill- MNI unit will obtain patent protection or assert data protection rights in respect of any of their research.

5. Respect academic autonomy
The MNI supports the autonomy of its stakeholders, including but not limited to researchers, staff, trainees and patients, through recognizing their right to decline to participate in research and associated activities under an OS framework. However, the MNI will not support activities that compromise the previously outlined OS principles.

 

Andre Picard puts it nicely in context in today's Globe and Mail, In Montreal, a wee opening in the closed world of science research.

Is the accepted way of doing science bad for science?

That question is the driving force behind the bold new “Open Science” initiative at the Montreal Neurological Institute.

Currently, governments invest a lot of money in health research, almost all of it at universities and labs associated with teaching hospitals.

We expect scientists to discover stuff such as drugs and technology and then commercialize those findings so there is a return on investment on the public funds invested. In recent years, there has been tremendous pressure on scientists to demonstrate immediate and lucrative results, and enormous scorn when they don’t.

*snip*

The Open Science philosophy holds that it is the latter. Open Science has four fundamental goals: 1) Transparency in experimental methodology and collection of data, 2) Public availability of scientific data, 3) Public accessibility and transparency and scientific communication, and 4) Using Web-based tools to facilitate collaboration.

*snip*

At The Neuro, all findings will be patent-free and freely accessible to other scientists worldwide – making it the first academic institute in the world to fully embrace open science. The Neuro can afford this experiment thanks to a $20-million (Canadian) donation from the family of Larry Tanenbaum, the philanthropist and chairman of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd. As a savvy businessman, he is convinced that openness will accelerate research and discovery. “What we are celebrating here today is the transformation of research, the removal of barriers, the breaking of silos and, most of all, the courage of researchers to put patients and progress ahead of all other considerations,” Mr. Tanenbaum said at Friday’s announcement.

 

Bravo. Let's hope this isn't the last Canadian research institute to make such a public commitment to open science. In fact, I'd like to challenge all of us to help our own institutions travel along this path. Different disciplines and different institutions (and even different units with different institutions) will have their own path, but it's important to start the journey and make the commitment to find that path.

And, as promised, here's a bit of background reading on the Neuro's journey to open science over the last year or so.

 

As usual, if I've missed anything significant, let me know in the comments.

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Best Science Books 2016: Science Friday Best Science Books

Dec 20 2016 Published by under best science books 2016, science books

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, public health, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is Science Friday Best Science Books.

  • Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space by Janna Levin
  • The Polar Bear by Jenni Desmond
  • Time Travel: A History by James Gleick
  • The Confidence Game: Why We Fall for It . . . Every Time by Maria Konnikova
  • Being a Dog: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell by Alexandra Horowitz
  • Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World by Rachel Ignotofsky
  • The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars by Dava Sobel
  • Felt Time: The Psychology of How We Perceive Time by Marc Wittmann, Erik Butler (Translator)
  • I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong
  • The Unnatural World: The Race to Remake Civilization in Earth's Newest Age by David Biello
  • Earth in Human Hands: Shaping Our Planet's Future by David Grinspoon
  • The Planet Remade: How Geoengineering Could Change the World by Oliver Morton
  • Spaceborne by Donald Pettit
  • The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself by Sean Carroll
  • Seven Brief Lessons on Physics by Carlo Rovelli
  • The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman
  • The Age of Em: Work, Love, and Life when Robots Rule the Earth by Robin Hanson

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

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Music Mondays: Best Jazz Albums 2016: A list of lists

Dec 18 2016 Published by under friday fun, music, music mondays, Uncategorized

Another annual obsession to add to the list, along with the listings of best science books? Look like it, if last year and this year are anything to judge by.

This particular post collects lists of "best of the year" jazz albums I've found across various websites. For the purposes of this project, I'm not giving each list its own post and showcasing the albums that are part of the list. That's an awful lot of work, which I'm reserving for the science books project which is more core to the mission of this blog.

Note: I've included a few not-exclusively-jazz lists if they've happened to include either jazz sections or lots of jazz-ish items. If this project has any happy outcome, it would have to be my readers broadening their musical horizons by discovering great new music through these lists, the wider and more varied the better.

Enjoy! And happy listening!
 

 

There are certainly many more lists to come, probably many of them only popping up well into the first week of January. I'll probably update this post a few more times up until that point. In particular, there are not too many Canadian lists yet so I'm looking forward to catching up with some of them.

If I'm missing any lists, please let me know in the comments.

Related, from last year here's a huge list of lists of lists covering jazz, even very marginally. I'm looking forward to this year's compilation. Avant Music News is collecting lists for jazz and experimental music. Eric Alper is doing the same thing for "best of" lists across a wider range of genres.

For a much more comprehensive 2016 "list of lists" for jazz and other kinds of music, try this one from Dean Minderman on St. Louis Jazz Notes.

As for my own "Best of the Year" list, given how much I love reading and aggregating such lists, I'm surprisingly not so much into making one for myself. That being said, here are a few albums from the jazz & blues world that I found particularly wonderful in 2016.

  • Take Me to the Alley by Gregory Porter
  • Let Me Get By by The Tedeschi Trucks Band
  • Blackstar by David Bowie
  • A Cosmic Rhythm With Each Stroke by Vijay Iyer / Wadada Leo Smith -
  • Ride the One by Paul Reddick
  • Perfection by The Murray, Allen & Carrington Power Trio
  • Emily's D+Evolution by Esperanza Spalding
  • Heal My Soul by Jeff Healey
  • Cuong Vu Trio Meets Pat Metheny by Cuong Vu Trio with Pat Metheny

(Yeah, I know, it's not quite Monday as I'm posting this, but close enough...)

 

Update 2016.12.22. Added a bunch of new ones since the 18th as well as filling in some missed ones.
Update 2017.01.06. A bunch of new ones, of course, and a few ones I missed before. I'm unlikely to update again unless there's a gap needing filling such as discovering a bunch of non-English language posts that I've missed. If you know of any such posts that I've missed, please let me know either to dupuisj at gmail dot com or in the comments.

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Best Science Books 2016: Brain Pickings The Greatest Science Books of 2016

Dec 15 2016 Published by under best science books 2016, science books

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, public health, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is .

  • Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space by Janna Levin
  • Time Travel: A History by James Gleick
  • Felt Time: The Psychology of How We Perceive Time by Marc Wittmann, Erik Butler (Translator)
  • When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  • The Confidence Game: Why We Fall for It . . . Every Time by Maria Konnikova
  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • The Polar Bear by Jenni Desmond
  • The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself by Sean Carroll
  • The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate―Discoveries from A Secret World by Peter Wohlleben
  • Being a Dog: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell by Alexandra Horowitz
  • I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong
  • Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly
  • The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars by Dava Sobel
  • Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World by Rachel Ignotofsky

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

No responses yet

Best Science Books 2016: Goodreads Choice Awards

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, public health, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is Goodreads Choice Awards: Nonfiction, Memoir and Autobiography, History and Biography, Science and Technology.

  • The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley
  • When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  • Lab Girl by Hope Jahren
  • Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars by Nathalia Holt
  • Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly
  • Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? by Frans de Waal
  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War by Mary Roach
  • The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman
  • The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself by Sean Carroll
  • Patient H.M.: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets by Luke Dittrich
  • Idiot Brain: What Your Head Is Really Up To by Dean Burnett
  • Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart by James R. Doty
  • In a Different Key: The Story of Autism by John Donvan, Caren Zucker
  • Unseen City: The Majesty of Pigeons, the Discreet Charm of Snails & Other Wonders of the Urban Wilderness by Nathanael Johnson
  • On Trails: An Exploration by Robert Moor
  • Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions by Brian Christian, Tom Griffiths
  • Cure: A Journey into the Science of Mind Over Body by Jo Marchant
  • I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong
  • The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future by Kevin Kelly
  • Time Travel: A History by James Gleick
  • Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy by Cathy O'Neil
  • Baby Birds: An Artist Looks into the Nest by Julie Zickefoose
  • Citizen Scientist: Searching for Heroes and Hope in an Age of Extinction by Mary Ellen Hannibal

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

One response so far

Best Science Books 2016: The Economist Books of the Year 2016

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, public health, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is The Economist Books of the Year 2016.

  • I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong
  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • Patient HM: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets by Luke Dittrich
  • Cure: A Journey into the Science of Mind over Body by Jo Marchant
  • The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars by Dava Sobel

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

No responses yet

Best Science Books 2016: Library Journal Best Books 2016

Dec 06 2016 Published by under best science books 2016, science books

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is Library Journal Best Books 2016 and Nonfiction.

  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • The Industries of the Future by Alec Ross
  • How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of How Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS by David France
  • Gender Medicine: The Groundbreaking New Science of Gender- and Sex-Based Diagnosis and Treatment by Marek Glezerman
  • Snowball in a Blizzard: A Physician's Notes on Uncertainty in Medicine by Steven Hatch
  • When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  • Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? by Frans de Waal
  • Being a Dog: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell by Alexandra Horowitz
  • Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War by Mary Roach
  • The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World by Abigail Tucker
  • The Dragon Behind the Glass: A True Story of Power, Obsession, and the World’s Most Coveted Fish by Emily Voigt

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

No responses yet

Best Science Books 2016: The Globe and Mail 100 Best Books of the Year

Dec 05 2016 Published by under best science books 2016, science books

As you all have no doubt noticed over the years, I love highlighting the best science books every year via the various end of year lists that newspapers, web sites, etc. publish. I've done it so far in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013,2014 and 2015.

And here we are in 2016!

As in previous years, my definition of "science books" is pretty inclusive, including books on technology, engineering, nature, the environment, science policy, history & philosophy of science, geek culture and whatever else seems to be relevant in my opinion.

Today's list is The Globe and Mail 100 Best Books of the Year.

  • The Art of Waiting: On Fertility, Medicine, and Motherhood by Belle Boggs
  • The Attention Merchants: The Epic Scramble to Get Inside Our Heads by Tim Wu
  • A Field Guide to Lies: Critical Thinking in the Information Age by Daniel J. Levitin
  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • Closer: Notes from the Orgasmic Frontier of Female Sexuality by Sarah Barmak
  • In-Between Days: A Memoir About Living with Cancer by Teva Harrison

And check out my previous 2016 lists here!

You can also check out my appearances on the Science for the People Gifts for Nerds podcasts for the last few years: 2014, 2015, 2016.

Many of the lists I use are sourced via the Largehearted Boy master list.

(Astute readers will notice that I kind of petered out on this project a couple of years ago and never got around to the end of year summary since then. Before loosing steam, I ended up featuring dozens and dozens of lists, virtually every list I could find that had science books on it. While it was kind of cool to be so comprehensive, not to mention that it gave the summary posts a certain statistical weight, it was also way more work than I had really envisioned way back in 2008 or so when I started doing this. As a result, I'm only going to highlight particularly large or noteworthy lists this year and forgo any kind of end of year summary. Basically, all the fun but not so much of the drudgery.)

No responses yet

Friday Fun: Scooby Doo Team Expose Climate Change Tricksters

Somehow this post from News Biscuit seems even more relevant now than when it was intially published back in August. Of course, we all shudder to think who will be under that ghostly costume, orange hair, Alaska plaid, Brietbart ball cap and all.

Scooby Doo Team Expose Climate Change Tricksters

A two-man, two-woman, one-Great Dane team of young Americans has exposed the belief that the Earth is heading towards widespread famine and ecological disaster, as the work of a scheming fraudster. Team leader Fred explained that they were passing through Central London in their VW camper van when a recent copy of the Daily Express alerted them to a mystery.

Despite increasing talk about global warming, recent winters have often been quite cold. ‘We suspected there might be something odd going on, so we split into two teams,’ Fred told reporters. ‘Me, Daphne and Velma looked in the basement at the Met Office, while Shaggy and Scooby were sent to explore the newsroom of a little-known newspaper called The Guardian which had been publishing some of these made-up stories.’

Read this whole thing and shudder.

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