Posts Tagged ‘lighter side’

A blasting good way to understand the complex and beautiful world of cell biology

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 02-06-2012

The winner of the 2011 National Science Foundation’s International Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge have been announced and not surprisingly, one of our favorite contenders, FoldIt! has taken top prize. Since we have written about FoldIt! in the past (see Guilt-Free Computer Gaming for Protein Scientists) we won’t belabor the point any more. However, we will bring to your attention one of the runners up, Meta!Blast which is a serious game that explores the complexities of cellular and metabolic biology.

According to the website, Meta!blast, developed at Iowa State University, is a real-time 3D action-adventure video game, aimed at high school and undergraduate student audiences, meant to provide an entertaining, engaging experience while simultaneously educating players about cell biology. Players discover that their entire lab has been sucked up by a plant cell and it is their job to rescue the group while dodging the hazards associated with the internal cell environment. By immersing players into a virtual cell environment and allowing them to interact with it on their own terms, the developers hope that players will come to a greater understanding of the cell than they could learn from traditional diagrams and textbooks.

The game is available in both windows and mac version and can be downloaded at

Help show everyone what scientists really look like

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 02-01-2012

I recently came across a great website that is out to “change the perception of who and what a scientist is or isn’t.” This is What a Scientist Looks Like is collecting pictures of scientists in action and what they have posted will be sure to delight you. Many in the general public tend to think of scientists as labcoat wearing nerds who work in a stuff lab messing around with test-tubes and funny colored liquids. On the contrary, “this is what a scientist looks like” has posted pictures of scuba divers, scientists hanging out in nature, scientists with their kids and even a few “normal” looking scientists. I believe that this is a great endevour and I encourage all of you to visit the website and submit a picture that will help improve our collective image!

After all, we can’t just leave it to the Muppets to show the public who we really are!

Adorable video: Kids answer why there should be more women in science

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 01-18-2012

For the last 14 years, L’Oréal and UNESCO have been promoting women in science through the For Women in Science program. According to the For Women in Science website, since 1998, 62 L’ORÉAL-UNESCO Award Laureates from 28 countries have been recognized for their contributions to the advancement of science and over 860 Fellows from 93 countries have been encouraged to pursue their scientific vocations through national and international fellowship programs. In all, more than 900 women scientists have been distinguished by the Awards or supported in the pursuit of their careers since the creation of the L’OREAL-UNESCO For Women in Science partnership.

L’Oréal USA recently took to the street to ask citizens of this great country what they thought of women and science. Below is a video of their responses.

Teen Science Superstars

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 01-12-2012

OK. I’m impressed. When I was 13, I worked at an ice cream store.

Live as if you were to die tomorrow-and learn as if you were to live forever

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 01-03-2012

While searching for other Symphony of Science videos similar to Ode to the brain , I came across a video called “Symphony of Science-DNA and Life” which is very appropriate for a molecular biology audience such as ours. In addition to containing some great quotes, (such as the title of this post), the music is quite catchy and the lyrics intriguing. Since I could not find the video on the Symphony of Science website I am not sure if it is an original or a modified version. Whatever the case may be, think that it’s a great video and I’ve posted it below for all to enjoy.