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September 20, 2014

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1:55 PM | Weekend reads: Reading Nature and Science “very unpleasant,” how to spot fake journals
The week at Retraction Watch featured revelations about the backstory of an expression of concern, and Office of Research Integrity findings in a case that had its beginnings in Retraction Watch comments. Here’s what was happening elsewhere: “It’s actually a very unpleasant experience to read a Nature paper, or to read a Science paper,” says […]
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1:43 PM | Review of T. Parsons' Articulating Medieval Logic
By Catarina Dutilh Novaes (Cross-posted at M-Phi) I was asked to write a review of Terry Parsons' Articulating Medieval Logic for the Australasian Journal of Philosophy. This is what I've come up with so far. Comments welcome! =================================== Scholars working on (Latin) medieval logic can be viewed as populating a...

September 19, 2014

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10:06 PM | Mrs. Johnson's class is doing well. Let's call that a school
If you are following the data side of the ed reform story, you really need to check out Gary Rubinstein's account ofFrayser 9GA, the miracle school of the Achievement School District
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8:51 PM | Praying Together, Battery Life and Basketball (Statshot)
Almost half of religious congregations in the U.S. now welcome gay couples as members, sales of the iPhone 6 have already outpaced initial supplies, and The U.S. men's national basketball team returns to dominance.
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7:57 PM | MacArthur confers “genius” awards for playful math and practical art
No summary available for this post.
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5:05 PM | Would Consumers Lose Money if U.S. Dropped the Penny?
When opponents debate the pros and cons of eliminating the U.S. one-cent coin, one contentious point deals with rounding sales prices to the nearest nickel.
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5:00 PM | Einstein makes an appearance in superheavy chemistry
A chemical compound using superheavy element seaborgium is the first to show effects linked to Einstein's theory of relativity
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4:11 PM | Scotland Had 85% Turnout; Has U.S. Ever Come Close to That?
For its referendum on whether it should separate from its 307-year-old union with the U.K., Scotland saw a remarkable 84.6% voter turnout. Voter turnout in the U.S. is lucky to be half that.
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4:01 PM | MoreOrLess: Kidney donation: the chance of finding a match 19 Sept 14
The chance of a successful kidney match between two unrelated people has increased significantly in the past ten years - why? Tim Harford speaks to Professor Anthony Warrens, president of the British Transplantation Society. Donations to the Manchester Dogs' Home have exceeded £1m in the wake of a fire, which killed more than 50 dogs. The large sum raised caused Today presenter Justin Webb to comment that it often seems easier to raise money for animals than humans who are in need. Is it […]
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3:30 PM | Image manipulation forces retraction of hepatitis C paper
A group of researchers from Egypt has lost their 2013 article on hepatitis C in the Journal of Immunoassay and Immunochemistry for fudging their figures. The article was titled “In vitro neutralization of HCV by goat antibodies against peptides encompassing regions downstream of HVR-1 of E2 glycoprotein.” According to the abstract: This article aims at […]
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1:30 PM | Economics paper retracted for plagiarism after citing its twin
As we’ve pointed out before, economics and business journals have few retractions compared with the other academic literature. Opinions vary on why this is, but the fact that only a few journals have plagiarism policies can’t help. Research Papers in Economics, or RePEc, an organization that maintains a database of economics papers, however, thoroughly investigates […]
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1:00 PM | And you have a problem with Joe Camel?
Mental Floss (one of the internet's best time killers) has a very cool article called 10 Lifehacks from 100 Years Ago.In the late 1880s, cigarette manufacturers began inserting stiffening cards into their paper packs of cigarettes to strengthen the containers. It wasn't long before they got the idea to put artwork, trivia, famous people, and pretty girls onto those cards, grouped into collectible series. The cards, which continued into the 1940s, are highly valuable now, with the most […]
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2:00 AM | Septembre, 3ème défi
Chaque semaine, un défi du calendrier mathématique 2014... - Défis du Calendrier Mathématique 2014 / Carrousel

September 18, 2014

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8:00 PM | Chances of first life improved by weighted dice
Adjusting the numbers of various types of molecule in the environment seem to improve the chances of self-replicating life generating spontaneously
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5:45 PM | Who submits to top general philosophy journals?
In a recent survey, I asked philosophers about their submissions to journals, to get a sense of what journals people submit to and also what factors might influence their decisions on where to submit papers. Specifically, I wanted to know how frequently people submit their work to the top 5...
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4:49 PM | Ebola Drives Up Prices In Worst-Hit Areas of Liberian Capital, Early Data Show
Prices for a bundle of basic goods in areas of the Liberian capital Monrovia hit by Ebola are about 8% higher than in the unaffected areas, a set of early data collected from the ground show.
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4:10 PM | Is it time for a retraction penalty?
The title of this post is the headline of our most recent column in LabTimes, which begins: As we write this in mid-August, Nature has already retracted seven papers in 2014. That’s not yet a record – for that, you’d have to go back to 2003’s ten retractions, in the midst of the Jan Hendrik […]
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2:06 PM | How Americans Spend: 1993 vs. 2013
In 2013 Americans earned and spent less in general, but spent more on health care and housing compared to the year before. What about 20 years ago?
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1:00 PM | Artificial intelligence, natural stupidity
This started out as one of my standard ddulite rants, another round of complaints about how the press goes all gee-whiz over high tech and stops thinking critically, but I think this might be something more basic, something where the editors were being less ddulites and more dullards.I was checking out the news stories on Yahoo when I came across this ominous headline linking to a Business Insider story:By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' And That Could Be A ProblemI say […]
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11:58 AM | Former UT-Southwestern cancer researchers faked data in 10 papers: ORI
The Office of Research Integrity (ORI) has ruled in a case we’ve been following for nearly two years — and which seems to have been launched after Retraction Watch readers took a careful look at figures from what seemed to be an unrelated case. Takao Takahashi and Makato Suzuki, both former postdocs at a cancer […]
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5:00 AM | Les mathématiques peuvent-elles jouer un rôle dans l'éducation à l'égalité ?
En juin 2014, l'abandon de l'expérience des ABCD de l'égalité menée durant l'année 2013-2014 devant plus de 600 classes, est annoncé par le ministre de l'Éducation nationale. - Le débat du 18...
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12:19 AM | Placement Data News
Over the past three years I have collected and reported on placement data for positions in academic philosophy. (Interested readers can find past posts here at New APPS under the "placement data" category, two of which have been updated with the new data, several posts at ProPhilosophy, or the very...

September 17, 2014

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11:18 PM | Tilting at windmills
Don Quixote September 29, 2014 is the 467th birthday of Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes, whose immortal Don Quixote is widely regarded as one of the greatest works of literature in any language. In fact, in 2002 the Norwegian Book Club named Don Quixote as “best literary work ever written” in their listing of the Continue reading Tilting at windmills
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9:00 PM | Numerical Quantum Simulations of Realistic Materials – Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Simulating quantum mechanics on classical computers appears at first to require exponential computational resources, yet at the same time rapid progress is being made in accurate simulations of the quantum properties of realistic materials. How is this discrepancy resolved?
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8:00 PM | Strategies to Prolong Vision in Inherited Forms of Blindness
In the disease retinitis pigmentosa (RP), disease genes directly cause the dysfunction and death of rod photoreceptors, the photoreceptor type that mediates vision in dim light, causing night blindness. Subsequently, the cone photoreceptors, which mediate color and daylight vision, also lose function and die. Dr. Cepko et al have suggested a model wherein cones are affected due to the dysregulated metabolism that follows rod death. They have begun to develop gene therapy to combat this, using […]
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6:30 PM | Rainbow galaxies reveal why cosmos is full of spirals
Psychedelic pictures of 30 galactic collisions show for the first time that merging galaxies often spawn disc-shaped offspring like our Milky Way
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6:05 PM | The MacArthur Drought in Philosophy
by Eric Schwitzgebel See here. The last MacArthur "genius" fellowship awarded to someone they classified as philosopher was in 1993. On the whole, scholars outside of philosophy tend, I think, not to see much value in what most professional philosophers do. The MacArthur drought is one reflection and measure of...
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5:00 PM | Lasers slim down on stopped-light diet
A new kind of laser that powers up by freezing light in its tracks could lead to computers that run on photons instead of electrons
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3:30 PM | Publisher updates with more info on staph retraction
We brought you this story last week, about a paper on drug resistant staph being retracted for a lab error. Now, we’ve got an update from Rachel Safer, senior editor for medical journals at Oxford University Press, where the paper was published. Apparently, the researchers “inadvertently relied upon the use of a test system that was […]
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2:59 PM | Philosophy's Western Bias and What Can Be Done About It
Guest post by Christian Coseru One may be forgiven for thinking, on reading Brian Leiter's diatribe against identity politics and the danger it poses for academic philosophy, that there is a swell in 'consumer demand' for expanding the philosophy curriculum in questionable directions and for the wrong reasons. To clarify:...
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