For what it is worth, I go between short and long hair every few years, and find short hair to be way higher maintenance. Cutting hair every 6 months vs. 6 weeks makes a huge difference. I usually need product on short, but not long hair (I have pretty straight hair). I can't do a pixie, because I have a nevus… » 4/02/15 4:43pm 4/02/15 4:43pm

One of my most vivid grad school memories involved having a younger male grad student in a completely different and unrelated field mansplain my discipline to me. I introduced myself by my field of study (as you do), and that was his cue to teach me about my own field. I must have said "I know, I am studying plant… » 3/23/15 4:01pm 3/23/15 4:01pm

It's is interesting that this is being promoted as "the first of it's kind", as the Virtual Planetary Laboratory at the University of Washington has had a Biological Pigments Database available on their website for quite some time. Admittedly, it doesn't look like Pantone swatches, but it does provide spectra for the… » 3/17/15 9:33am 3/17/15 9:33am

​The Other Magical, Medicinal Sticky Bud

No, it's not marijuana. It's a close cousin, known as Humulus lupulus, better known as "hops." You know it as a key ingredient in beer, but its fat, resinous flowers are also prized for their flavor and their medicinal properties. We're just starting to unlock the biochemical secrets of hops, and discover why this… » 12/16/14 11:18am 12/16/14 11:18am

Plants Are Actually Kind of Evil

Generally speaking, plants get filed under the "boring" category. Occasionally, they smell nice, look pretty, or provide some tasty food, but that's about it. Until you realize that these immobile life forms are engaged in a terrifying daily battle that involves theft, slavery, eavesdropping — and explosives. » 7/24/14 12:00pm 7/24/14 12:00pm

Ecologically, this is worrisome to me. The idea that we have any control over the biosphere at present is pretty laughable, considering how incredibly poor our understanding of basic ecological processes are. For example, the idea of driving a "pest" species to extinction for the benefit of mankind deliberately… » 7/18/14 11:57am 7/18/14 11:57am

You're Worrying About GMOs For the Wrong Reasons

Scientists have demonstrated that genetically modified organisms have no measurable negative impacts on human health. Indeed, they may hold the key to feeding a world impacted by climate change. But does this mean GMOs are completely without risk? Nope. Here are some good reasons to be concerned.… » 6/05/14 12:43pm 6/05/14 12:43pm

Interestingly, "winning" at evolution really only means numbers. Higher fecundity means more propagation of genes, meaning your lineage is preserved longer, rather than being driven extinct. The genes of agriculturalists were disseminated far and wide for longer time periods. Even if lifespans were shorter, as long… » 6/05/14 12:01pm 6/05/14 12:01pm

It is worth pointing out that, while species loss is terrible and is definitely enhanced and accelerated by human activities, it is the fate of every species, over time. Hybridization, in the long run, could potentially be beneficial to these species, if the first generation offspring are fertile. They may enhance… » 6/05/14 11:16am 6/05/14 11:16am

I think the science element comes in when we talk about conserving genetic diversity of crop animals (which, due to industrial agriculture, has dropped to almost nothing for all crops). I think the resurgence in backyard chicken keeping has been a boon for these types of breeds. The fact still stands that the White… » 5/30/14 9:59am 5/30/14 9:59am