Some links to interesting stories: multitasking, genes, SFI, start-ups, Obama’s Science advisors and some fraud
The brain can do as many as two things at once!
Motivated Multitasking: How the Brain Keeps Tabs on Two Tasks at Once
New research shows that rather than being totally devoted to one goal at a time, the human brain can distribute two goals to different hemispheres to keep them both in mind–if it perceives a worthy reward for doing so.
The Search for Genes Leads to Unexpected Places By CARL ZIMMER
Edward M. Marcotte is looking for drugs that can kill tumors by stopping blood vessel growth, and he and his colleagues at the University of Texas at Austin recently found some good targets — five human genes that are essential for that growth. Now they’re hunting for drugs that can stop those genes from working. Strangely, though, Dr. Marcotte did not discover the new genes in the human genome, nor in lab mice or even fruit flies. He and his colleagues found the genes in yeast.
Two good news start-up stories:
The three co-chairs: John Holdren, Assistant to the President for Science and Technology and director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy; Eric Lander, professor at both Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School; and Harold Varmus, president of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
The other 18 members of PCAST are as follows:
—Rosina Bierbaum, Dean of the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Michigan
—Christine Cassel, president and CEO of the American Board of Internal Medicine
—Christopher Chyba, professor of astrophysical sciences and international affairs at Princeton University and a member of the Committee on International Security and Arms Control of the National Academy of Sciences
—S. James Gates Jr., professor of physics and director of the Center for String and Particle Theory at the University of Maryland, College Park
—Shirley Ann Jackson, president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and former Chair of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission
—Richard Levin, president of Yale University
—Chad Mirkin, professor of chemistry in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences and director of Northwestern’s International Institute of Nanotechnology
—Mario Molina, professor of chemistry and biochemistry at the University of California, San Diego and the Center for Atmospheric Sciences at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and 1995 chemistry Nobel laureate
—Ernest J. Moniz, professor of physics and engineering systems, director of the Energy Initiative, and director of the Laboratory for Energy and the Environment at MIT
—Craig Mundie, Chief Research and Strategy Officer at Microsoft Corp
—Ed Penhoet, a director of Alta Partners, and chairman of the Board for Immune Design and Metabolex
—William Press, professor of computer sciences at the University of Texas at Austin
—Maxine Savitz, retired general manager of Technology Partnerships at Honeywell, Inc
—Barbara Schaal, distinguished professor at Washington University and vice president of the National Academy of Sciences
—Eric Schmidt, chairman and CEO of Google Inc. and a member of the Board of Directors of Apple Inc.
—Daniel Schrag, professor of geology at Harvard University and professor of environmental science and engineering in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
—David E. Shaw, chief scientist of D. E. Shaw Research and founder of D. E. Shaw & Co., an investment and technology development firm
—Ahmed Zewail, professor of chemistry and physics at Caltech, director of the Physical Biology Center, and 1999 Nobel laureate in chemistry
By Jef Akst, Associate Editor, The Scientist