Category Archives: Commentary

Small Things: Lightly Toasted

Once upon a time, it was the early 20th century and physics was pretty much over. Yes, that’s right. With classical mechanics (remember what we talked about last time?) having been thoroughly thought out by some of the most brilliant scientific minds in history

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Does your profile picture look gay?: Talking with Stanford Data Scientist Michal Kosinski about his controversial AI

You may have heard of Michal Kosinski and Yilun Wang’s provocative study which asserts that AI can accurately predict sexual orientation with a facial recognition algorithm. Their paper draws a connection

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Second-wave Effects: A Global Health Perspective on Climate Change

Monsoon season in Southwest Asia generally stretches from early June until late September. While the annual rainfalls are known to replenish freshwater and maintain the vibrant green rice paddies that line hills, the last decade has seen a greater severity in the amount of rain, resulting in catastrophic consequences for the people of the south Asian subcontinent. This past year,

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DNA Synthesis Going Viral: Evaluating the Security of Dual-Use Biotechnology

In 2004, the United States passed legislation that made hundreds of researchers around the country guilty of a crime with consequences of up to $2,000,000 fines and a prison sentence of 25 years to life. What was that crime? Working with vaccinia—a live virus vaccine that essentially eradicated smallpox by 1980 and became the most widely used human immunization. While

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Alternative Science? The future of science research in Trump’s America

By: Lloyd Lyall Trump’s attitudes on medicine and the environment might be some of the most striking disavowals of science in the modern world. The president has labelled climate change a “hoax created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing noncompetitive,”2 and claimed “new ‘environmentally friendly’ lightbulbs cause cancer.”3 Fracking poses “zero health risks,”4 and vaccines

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