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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Sunspots 87


Things I have recently spotted that may be of interest to someone else:


Science:
Sitting up straight may not be as good for you as many people have told you it was.

Scientific discoverers are dispensible in a way that artists are not. Gravity, America, and natural selection would all have been discovered by somebody else if Newton, Columbus, and Darwin had not gotten there first, whereas nobody would have written Hamlet, painted the Mona Lisa or composed the Ninth Symphony if Shakespeare, Leonardo, and Beethoven had not done so. Yet is is precisely because scientists have to be first that their achievement is even more remarkable. Shakespeare did not have to beat Marlowe to the the first draft of Hamlet. Matt Ridley, Francis Crick: Discoverer of the Genetic Code. New York: HarperCollins, 2006. p. 76. (Newton, of course, did not discover gravity. Adam and Eve did. Newton, however, was the first to realize that it was an attractive force.)

In the same book, that a female lab technician, Leslie Barnett, filled in the last gap in the RNA genetic code's "dictionary."

A female komodo dragon (large lizard) is about to have offspring that have no father.

Literature:
Ursula K. Le Guin defends the value of fantasy literature for children (and adults).

Christianity:
Bonnie has some sobering reflections for all Christians, based on the recent problems with prominent Christian leaders. There are fundamental problems with how we disciple others, she says.

This week's Christian Carnival is at this blog (I don't have the URL, but you can scroll down to find the Carnival category on the right.) (For information on locating these Carnivals, see here.)

When I don't tell where I found an item above, I either found it directly, or was probably pointed to it by the Librarian's Internet Index, SciTech Daily, or Arts and Letters Daily. All of these sources are great.

Thanks for reading! Keep clicking away.

Image source (public domain)

2 comments:

Bonnie said...

Thanks for the link, Martin. Merry Christmas!

Martin LaBar said...

You are most welcome, Bonnie.