Photo of the day

From Wired— best microscopic photos of 2013

  • 16th Place: Geir Drange, Asker, Norway

    Subject: Pityohyphantes phrygianus (sheet weaver spider) with a parasitic wasp larva on the abdomen
    Technique: Reflected Light, Focus Stacking
    Magnification: 5x

Quick hits

1) This Slate story has the subtitle: “Do male professors need and seek out attention from their female students?”  Yes.  But, professors need and seek out attention from all their students– male and female.  This was actually basically an article about male professors who sexually harass their female students.  That’s obviously wrong.  And sadly, still a genuine problem.  But it has almost nothing to do with what the article implies.  As you know, I generally love Slate, but this is classic Slate gone wrong.
2) 30 Brilliant Billboards.  Absolutely hilarious.

3) Trevor Potter— best known these days as Stephen Colbert’s campaign finance lawyer– says the Supreme Court needs to get smarter about politics.  He’s right.

4) Scientists use eye-tracking technology to show that men look at womens’ breasts and butts.  Next week scientists will use technology to demonstrate that Americans have larger English-language vocabularies than do Chinese.

5) Speaking of sexual objectification, some cute animals practice some really, really bad behavior.  If only they were just looking.

And delphine sexual aggression isn’t limited to members of their own kind. Dolphins have tried to force themselves on human swimmers, a prospect made all the more terrifying by the fact that they have prehensile penises.

Now, that’s the great stuff I’m expecting from Slate, damnit.

6) Every week more reason to love Pope Francis.

7) Loved Krugman on the GOP’s war on the poor.

8) Joshua Holland on the high cost of low taxes.

9) Jellyfish killing robot.  And we’ll need this if we keep killing all the fish, leaving the jellyfish to take over.

10 My the Republican Party has been getting unpopular.  Greg Sargent:



11) Parents ruin kids’ sports by obsessing about winning.  Yep.  But reading this, was also a great argument for the more laid-back recreational level than the hyper competitive level the author’s child is clearly involved in.

12) The reason a lot of American are uncomfortable with unironic displays of patriotism is because so often patriotism is used as a cynical, manipulative political cudgel.

13) Study finds conservatives react more strongly to insults than do liberals.  There are well-documented personality type differences between liberals and conservatives which I suspect are largely what’s behind this.  I won’t be offended if you criticize me for suggesting this.

14) You should watch Mud.

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