Friday links: the war on researcher degrees of freedom begins, accidental aRt, and more (UPDATED with new link!)

From Meg:

On the same general theme as my Ada Lovelace Day post, here’s a great article on Elzada Clover, a pioneering botanist. She was the first woman to navigate the Colorado River, and the article focuses on some of the barriers she faced (and overcame!) in order to take her journey in 1938.

If you, like me, are bad at identifying poison ivy, then this quiz is for you! I once spent a whole summer avoiding what ended up being black raspberry because I thought it was poison ivy.

Accidental aRt (that is, R plots that ended up looking quite pretty/interesting from an aesthetic standpoint – if not a data standpoint) (ht: Kara Woo via Jarrett Byrnes)

Female Science Professor posted a comment from a reader saying that academic life is good, including for parents, and that failing to acknowledge this is needlessly scaring people away from academia. I mostly agree with this person’s sentiments – though, of course, there are some days where things seem better than others (as is true with everything).

And finally, just in case anyone is still harboring illusions that ecology is immune to the sorts of sexual harassment that have been in the news lately, here’s a post from Kelly Weinersmith describing her experience.

From Jeremy:

Don’t say “I’m not a math person.” Anybody who works at it can become a math person. Relevant to the debate a while back about E. O. Wilson’s column suggesting that we ought to cater to the (acquired) math phobia of students rather than helping them overcome it. Also relevant to more recent discussions of the role of mathematical theory in ecology.

The war on researcher degrees of freedom has begun: As a matter of ethics, medical and psychological studies are now likely to be required to pre-register their designs in a publicly-accessible repository. Previously this was the case only for clinical trials. Maybe ecologists should consider it too? Relatedly, the top journal in psychology has added methodological disclosure requirements to their online submission form. Authors will now have to disclose any data they excluded and the grounds for exclusions, all treatments conducted including ones that failed, all variables measured including those not reported in the ms, and how they determined sample sizes and decided to stop collecting data. (HT Ed Yong)

Tim Poisot maps out the most tweeted-about ecological concepts.

And finally, this has nothing to do with ecology, but it’s too good not to share. College marching bands are very much an American thing, but I think readers from around the world will be able to appreciate the Ohio State University marching band’s tribute to Hollywood blockbusters. I like the “Superman righting a falling building” formation best, but the “Harry Potter catching the snitch” and “T. rex from Jurassic Park” formations are a close second and third. :-) (HT my dad)

UPDATE: Scary scientific Halloween costumes! The best idea is to go as “peer review”. :-) (HT Jeremy Yoder, via Twitter)

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6 thoughts on “Friday links: the war on researcher degrees of freedom begins, accidental aRt, and more (UPDATED with new link!)

  1. The Best Damn Band In The Land!!! I roomed with band members one year–those dudes are serious. And crazy. Frat boy antics have nothing on those guys.

    The wicked witch and T-Rex were cool, but the sinking of the ship from the school up north beats ‘em both. On the other hand, we sink their ship on a yearly basis, so no big deal… :)

  2. I really appreciate the “I’m not a math person links. This is a theme (not being a math person) that I have felt most of my life. I have struggled the past few years to teach myself the basic math skills to try and understand the equations that are the backbone of ecological theory. I have read Gotelli’s “A Primer of Ecology” numerous times. A really good book that I am using to learn ecological modeling in R is M. Henry H. Stevens ” A Primer of Ecology with R”. I believe he does a good job explaining the models, why they are used and most importantly what they mean. Hopefully, the future of ecology undergraduate professors will be able to encourage students that math isn’t scary, but it is necessary.

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