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ABATC-2012 Year in Review

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


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Another year, another time to take a look at an arbitrary period of time and check what happened, what one did, and perhaps squeeze some overarching meaning out of the emerging patterns. So, why not, another annual summary of the blog – perhaps you even missed some of the old stuff!

January was, of course, busy with ScienceOnline2012. Thus, not surprisingly, my posts at the time were related to it – ScienceOnline2012 – the Unconference, the Community (important again, especially if you are coming to ScienceOnline2013) and #scio12: Multitudes of Sciences, Multitudes of Journalisms, and the Disappearance of the Quote, a post in which I set the stage for one of the panels, and some other discussions at the event. This was followed in February by a grand summary of the proceedings (again important for those arriving in Raleigh next January) – ScienceOnline2012 – thoughts about present and future.

After recovering from #scio12, I wrote my first actual science post of the year – Chestnut Tree Circadian Clock Stops In Winter, followed by a bunch of re-posts of some good ole’ posts from the old blog. And I went to Charlotte to give a talk.

March was a busy time (including a week in Edmonton, Canada) and so was April, so again I re-posted several old science posts, as well a bunch of new Q&As with the #scio12 attendees. We unveiled the new ScienceOnline website as well.

Finally in May, I found some more time to write new stuff, not just interviews and re-posts. I wrote about science: How barley domesticated its clock, Under construction – ITER in LEGO, Shaq and the Mini-Shaq, the extreme primates, When Should Schools Start in the morning? and the Big Post of the month – Clocks, metabolism, evolution – toward an integrative chronobiology. And I wrote about the media and blogging in The SA Incubator, or, why promote young science writers?

In June I did the first ever SciAm Live Chat about science blogging, circadian rhythms, sleep, metabolism and evolution. I blogged about the new scientific journal PeerJ. Then I posted the original English-language text of Why do we blog? To change the world which was published in a Croatian newspaper. And then I completely re-edited, and almost re-wrote an old post I like a lot – New Journalistic Workflow.

July was another globe-trotting busy month (I went to Dublin, for example), but I wrote about science – New research center in Madagascar opens today – and I wrote a very long post (later edited and published by the Library of Congress in a white paper) – Science Blogs – definition, and a history.

In August my travels took me to Kingston, Rhode Island and I first saw the new edition of Open Lab.

In September we had some Important updates on ScienceOnline and OpenLab. I could finally announce the names of the panelists for #sci4hels – ‘Killer’ science journalists of the future ready to take over the world! panel in Helsinki 2013. And I wrote about science again, a post I am quite proud of: Tigers take to the night – for peaceful coexistence with humans.

October was a really good month on the blog! I wrote about science multiple times, some quite cool posts! See: Stumped by bed nets, mosquitoes turn midnight snack into breakfast, Charlotte’s Web: what was she smoking?, #2012SVP – what do Vertebrate Paleontologists talk about? and my high-traffic mega-hit Did NYC rats survive hurricane Sandy?. I also Skyped in a Keynote lecture at ScienceRewired in Adelaide, Australia. And I wrote a media post as well: Beats vs obsessions, columns vs. blogs, and other angels dancing on pins.

I followed up on the rats story in November with No rats in Ryder Alley. And I did an interview on the local NPR station about the Open Lab anthology. This month was mainly on the media track, with several posts, including: Nate Silver and the Ascendance of Expertise, then the follow-up to it: The other kinds of expertise, and the follow-up on the Helsinki panel planning: #sci4hels – the ‘killer’ science journalists of the future want your feedback.

December has been busy so far, but I published my first piece outside of blogs, on the main SciAm site – Publication of the ENCODE Encyclopedia: A Milestone in Genome Research, as a part of our Top 10 Science Stories of 2012 collection. As I will spend the next week or so in Canada again, on vacation, chances of another substantive blog posts before New Years are slim. But keep checking anyway! See you next year!






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