Publication, peer review, and the practice of pseudoscience

Most undergrads don’t get a chance to do their own research. I was lucky. I was at a small university with a great physics program, and I got to do multiple lab research projects before graduating. My capstone project, which dealt with quantum laser resonance, even afforded me the opportunity to present at the Alabama Academy of Science, and they published my abstract in their annual journal of proceedings.

I always hoped my professor would have time to get the paper submitted for peer review and formal publication, but time never came. So I was very excited when Dr. Joel Duff, a professor of biology at the University of Akron and a fellow science advocate, approached me about turning an old blog post into a formal journal article. …


Should the President get credit for stopping travel from China?

Imagine that your house is on fire.

The fire chief assures you everything is under control.

“We have a good idea of what’s going on, a very good idea, and a very good plan. People are saying it’s the best plan.”

“That’s good to hear. When will you be able to put it out?” you ask.

The chief doesn’t seem to hear you. …


The best-case scenario is a lot worse than we can handle.

Aisle after aisle stood empty, picked clean. No bleach. No laundry detergent. No flour. No bottled water. No bread. No oatmeal. No beans.

No bananas. Why are people buying all the bananas?

Plenty of overripe avocados.

With barely half of my shopping list checked off, I headed to the register.

Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash

We usually shop once a week, picking up basic staples and fresh produce. With coronavirus-related panic emptying the stores, this has been a challenge. My first attempt, last Friday night, met with little success. This Friday wasn’t much better.

“I’ll need to see your ID, sir.”

You’d imagine that with civilization evidently coming to an end, people wouldn’t worry about the bearded 30-year-old buying a case of IPAs. …

About

David MacMillan

Anyone with really good ideas will always be looking for better ones. Writing about law, fundamentalism, and science denial…book to follow.

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