A New Phase Two years ago I planted the seed that grew into what this blog has become today. It’s gone better than I thought and has provided opportunities to write for other blogs, a society magazine, and been an integral part of my growth as a science writer, and re-awoken my love of science … More Changes at The Quiet Branches.
I have questions for you, the readers (& anyone interested in plant science) as I consider my 2017 schedule for the blog and start to plan content for the year. So everyone knows (& can possibly help me), I will be moving onto a new job I still need to find within the first 3 … More What do You Want to see on The Quiet Branches 2017?
I had the pleasure of attending Sci Comm Camp in Malibu, CA organized by Sarah Keartes, Cara Santa Maria, and Jason Goldman. There is much more to say, but this post tries to weave together the messages I took away from the experience, plus some pictures, tweets, and hopefully, some substantive answers as to what … More Take Aways From Sci Comm Camp
Just what does science know? Does science even matter? Where does wonder and curiosity fit into a world where science now often seems to play the role of wet blanket? And just what are the best practices for communicating science to fellow scientists and other audiences alike? Those are a few of the questions I … More Engagement, Wonder, and no easy answers at the AAAS meeting.
This week, I’m going to write about a Genetically modified crop plant brought into the world by nature. Did you think only humans could genetically modify organisms? Nature’s been at it since long before humans were around. An international team of researchers published a paper in PNAS about the discovery of two T-DNA loci in … More A Naturally Genetically Modified Organism.
Good coffee has arrived on the International Space Station (ISS). An Italian designed espresso machine designed to fill a pouch with espresso will be installed on the ISS. They do have coffee in space currently, but it is apparently the instant stuff that tastes terrible, but works. I’m by no means a coffee snob and … More ISSpresso.
Say you write something and submit it for editing. Your editor sends it back with comments. And you create a new version and re-submit and so on. it’s a feedback loop. With editor/writer, it’s a loop of iterative improvement resulting in something publishable (ideally). Feedback loops in biology are also quite common. A recent paper … More Small surprises and a new feedback loop.
Quiet Branches started off with a broad definition of how plants show up in our lives. Two weeks ago, I wrote about translating research into practical products. And highlighted the many ways biotechnology shows up in our lives every day, in some critical (feeding the world) and fun ways (color changing petunias!). The video from … More Norman Borlaug.
What to make of Junk DNA A few weeks ago, science writer Carl Zimmer wrote (and literally bled in T. Ryan Gregory’s lab) a column in the New York Times exploring “junk” DNA. It’s a really good piece that also hits on how scientists have been arguing for a long time about what’s adaptive, what’s random, … More A small plant genome and “junk” DNA.
Before getting into this week’s post, I’d like to remind my readers that the discoveries of plant science I talk about here are going on in plants everywhere. The details may vary and the specific output responses might be different, but the research plant scientists do translates to most plants. The processes that go on … More My greatest moment in plant science.