Field of Science

Someone gets it right: Cell biology -is- relevant!

I love you, Tom:
"Recent genome sequencing has fostered a simplistic
view of organisms as essentially aggregates of genes.
However, organisms are not simply a sum of their
genes nor, as some biochemists were once wont to say,
mere bags of enzymes. Genes and enzymes are both
fundamental, but play their vital roles as parts of
highly organized growing and dividing cells. Their life
depends on a mutualistic symbiosis of genes, catalysts,
membranes and cell skeleton" - TC-S 2002 Intl J Sys Evol Microbiol [emphasis mine]
=D Warm fuzzy feeling inside... an evolutionary biologist who doesn't neglect cell structure! Someone who didn't forget that there's more to life than nucleotide sequences! What we have before us here is an endangered species, a rare specimen of sanity... wait, Cavalier-Smith and sanity in one sentence? I must've fucked this up big time...

So who dares me to plow through all 70 pages of that review? It's tempting, and I have a holiday coming up... "Mom, leave me alone, can't you see I'm trying to read a TC-S paper here?!", but it's 70 pages of Tom's hypothesising. Wherein he will cite himself at least 50 times... *checks* nope, only 39 this time. It's an older paper. And holy shit, 58 own entries in his latest J Euk Microbiol paper... an entire page of references!

But it's a lot of fun to read... yes, I read TC-S papers for fun. Where do I put that on my CV?

(now if only he could go easy on the mega- and meta-, and if only he could read, absorb and obey Tufte's The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, life would be so perfect...)

And since when do I blog so frequently? Eeek...gonna set the expectations too high for the oncoming schoolyear!


  1. Tangent: Tufte
    I ran accross this guy a while back, people kept pointing me to him, thinking I'd find his work interesting. Never quite understood him.

    So, Question: Do 'real' scientists (such as yourself) read/follow/utilize Tufte?

  2. Blogging critique:
    I was once heartily told-off by and english prof for abbreviating names of authors. Since I rather respect that prof, and since it confused me here, I'm going to complain about the use of 'TC-S' in place of a real name.

    I figured it out... but it was confusing.

  3. RE: Tufte - he basically puts the common sense gut feeling stuff of graph design on paper; like, sometimes you see a graph and you -know- its awful, but don't quite know how or what specifically can be fixed. To be honest I'm all that familiar with his work; have trhe Visual Display of Quantitative Information book but that's about it...

    And regarding the 'real' scientist part - thanks, but I don't know if I qualify yet, being an undergrad and all that. But I feel flattered =D ^.^

    Abbreviating names - I usually don't do that. But this is more of a 'cult' thing - every protistologist knows what TC-S means =P Generally, author abbreviations are a bad thing, I agree, but once in a blue moon there are exceptions... Also, his name is too freaking long. I probably should've introduced it in full at the beginning though...



Markup Key:
- <b>bold</b> = bold
- <i>italic</i> = italic
- <a href="">FoS</a> = FoS