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The Panda's Thumb is the virtual pub of the University of Ediacara. The patrons gather to discuss evolutionary theory, critique the claims of the antievolution movement, defend the integrity of both science and science education, and share good conversation. Movable Type Pro 4.381
Updated: 9 weeks 2 days ago

Photography Contest VIII

Tue, 2016-06-21 08:06
Polish your lenses, dust off your tripods, search your archives (and, if you have entered before, remember that you are not limited to 3 good pictures per lifetime) – the eighth Panda’s Thumb photography contest, begins – now! Pierce extinction meter, still-camera version. They sold for $1.95 in 1946. We will accept entries from 12:00 CST, Monday, June 20, through 12:00 CST, Monday, July 4. We encourage pictures of just about anything of scientific interest.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Avida-ED Web, The Beta Release

Tue, 2016-06-21 08:06
Avida-ED is educational software that provides an accessible presentation layer on the Avida artificial life platform. The first version was released nine years ago, and today marks Prof. Rob Pennock’s release of version 3, with a formal presentation at Evolution 2016. Avida-ED is geared toward the needs of undergraduate and advanced high school curriculum use. The new version, Avida-ED Web 3.0, is a web application: it runs in your browser (Firefox or Chrome currently; Safari,... Wesley R. Elsberry http://www.antievolution.org
Categories: Pro-Science News

Florida's Funny Numbers

Wed, 2016-06-15 05:35
Brandon Haught at Florida Citizens for Science does a deeper dive on the educational assessments coming out of the Florida Department of Education (DOE). The DOE says that student performance in science improved by a percentage point this past year. Haught shows that they redefined science performance in order to have an improvement, no matter how slight.... Wesley R. Elsberry http://www.antievolution.org
Categories: Pro-Science News

Chrysomela sp.

Wed, 2016-06-08 05:35
Chrysomela sp. – leaf beetle. Thanks to a volunteer at BugGuide for the identification.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Rush Limbaugh: "Why are there still apes?"

Sun, 2016-06-05 00:39
Media Matters reports that talk-show host Rush Limbaugh said on his May 31st, 2016 show By the way, you know there’s another factor in this, Snerdley? A lot of people think that all of us used to be apes. Don’t doubt me on this. A lot of people think that all of us used to be gorillas. And they’re looking for the missing link out there. The evolution crowd. They think we were originally apes.... Dave Thomas http://www.nmsr.org
Categories: Pro-Science News

Dembski on his "Disillusion with Fundamentalism"

Sun, 2016-06-05 00:39
On May 30, 2016, Bill Dembski announced: I had the opportunity at the end of this month (May 2016) to update an interview I did four years ago at TheBestSchools.org. What I was dealing with in The End of Christianity is a more narrow problem, namely, how to account for evil within a Christian framework given a reading of Genesis that allows the earth and universe to be billions, rather than merely thousands, of... Dave Thomas http://www.nmsr.org
Categories: Pro-Science News

Software Engineer Opening Available

Sun, 2016-06-05 00:39
The Cartwright Lab at Arizona State University is looking for a Software Engineer to be part of a team developing software related to bioinformatics and phylogenomics. To apply visit http://links.asu.edu/job-23154BR. (Job ID is 23154BR.) The closing date is June 10th at 3PM Arizona Time. Requisition ID: 23154BR Job Title: Associate Scientific Software Engineer Salary Range: $51,100–$60,000 per year; DOE Close Date: 10-June-2016 The Biodesign Center for Personalized Diagnostics is seeking an Associate Scientific Software Engineer... Reed A. Cartwright http://dererumnatura.us/
Categories: Pro-Science News

Photography contest VIII, coming up ...

Tue, 2016-05-31 19:40
… June 20. That is, we will accept entries from noon, June 20, to noon, July 3, where noon is defined by the Panda’s Thumb server, which thinks it is still in Central Standard Time, or UTC(GMT) - 5 h. The rules will be essentially the same as previous years’. We have not chosen categories yet, but please be assured that they (or it) will be all-inclusive. The number of entries has gone down monotonically... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Postdoc Opening Available

Thu, 2016-05-26 08:16
A Postdoctoral Research Associate position is available at the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University (ASU). This new Postdoctoral Research Associate will be part of the Cartwright lab (http://cartwrig.ht/) located in the Biodesign Center for Personalized Diagnostics. The lab is focused on evolutionary research related to mutation and population variation, as well as developing statistical software to process large, genomic datasets to identify and study somatic and germline mutation patterns. A successful candidate will participate... Reed A. Cartwright http://dererumnatura.us/
Categories: Pro-Science News

Hardground with borings

Thu, 2016-05-26 08:16
Photograph by Dan Phelps. Hardground with borings from the Grant Lake Limestone (Upper Ordovician, Maysvillian), Maysville, Kentucky. Mr. Phelps explains, “Hardgrounds are surfaces in the geologic record that lithified on the sea floor and then were bored into and encrusted by marine invertebrates, followed by the deposition of more sediments. They are common in Ordovician carbonates of Kentucky.” And adds, “The creationist explanations for hardgrounds can be hilarious. Especially look at the diagram with gas... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Ken Ham (and maybe Dan Phelps) to be featured on Australian TV

Sat, 2016-05-21 15:49
This link is a preview of an Australian television show about the “replica” of Noah’s Ark being built out of gopher steel and concrete in Kentucky. I think it will air next Sunday, and I hope that an online version will be available soon afterward. “Sunday Night” is apparently an Australian news magazine similar to 60 Minutes in the US. Ken (who you callin’ the a Messiah, bud?) Ham commented on the program here; he... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Youngstown, Ohio, teaches intelligent-design creationism as fact

Sat, 2016-05-21 15:49
A commenter on an earlier thread directed our attention to an article by Zack Kopplin in the Daily Beast, “School teaching creationism with video from Islamic sex cult.” The headline may be a bit over the top, but the gist of the article is that the school district is employing materials developed by Harun Yahya. To give due credit, here is what the commenter, “Charley Horse,” wrote on the earlier thread: A bit off topic... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Intelligent-design creationist gets tenure at Ball State University

Wed, 2016-05-11 12:17
An article in The Star Press datelined Muncie, Indiana, today proclaimed, ‘Intelligent design’ professor earns tenure at Ball State. The professor in question is Eric Hedin, a physics professor who, as we reported in 2013, is apparently an intelligent-design creationist and once taught a course called Boundaries of Science. The class has, however, been canceled, and Professor Hedin has presumably been enjoined to not teach creationism in his physics classes. (No, my very dear trolls,... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Recurvirostra americana

Wed, 2016-05-11 12:17
Recurvirostra americana – American avocet, Cottonwood Lake, Boulder, Colorado, 3 days ago.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

A devastating critique of population genetics? The Discovery Institute thinks so

Sun, 2016-05-08 04:16
A retired European geneticist, Wolf-Ekkehard Lönnig, has made a point that he feels is devastating to population genetic arguments about the effectiveness of natural selection. In a post at the Discovery Institute’s blog Evolution News and Views. He pointed to an argument he made in 2001 in an encyclopedia article. The essence of his criticism is that many organisms produce very large numbers of gametes, or of newborn offspring. Most of those must die. Then... Joe Felsenstein http://evolution.gs.washington.edu/felsenstein.html
Categories: Pro-Science News

Cognitive dissonance in Kentucky

Wed, 2016-05-04 16:00
Dan Phelps just sent us an editorial in the Lexington Herald-Leader. The editorial accuses Kentucky of seeking science jobs while at the same time denying science: not just evolution but also global warming, alternative energy sources, and conservation. The editorial notes that Kentucky is “perennially short of money,” in part because of tax breaks like that for the Ark Park, and concludes, Kentucky forgoes tax revenue to help deny science while telling students they need... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Celithemis eponina

Tue, 2016-04-26 21:01
Photograph by Robin Lee-Thorp. Photography contest, Honorable Mention. Celithemis eponina – Halloween pennant.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Cope vs. Kansas State Board of Education loses on appeal

Sat, 2016-04-23 10:47
NCSE informs us that the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals has rendered a decision in the appeal of Cope vs. Kansas, which we reported on here. Specifically, the Court of Appeals upheld the District Court’s earlier dismissal of the case, largely on the basis of standing. Additionally, NCSE notes, “Interestingly, though, the decision observes in a footnote that COPE’s suggestion for ‘teleological’ explanations to be added to the standards would be unconstitutional.” NCSE’s report on... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

The Ark Park is hiring

Thu, 2016-04-21 00:51
Answers in Genesis is advertising a whole slew of jobs, but you do not have to read very far between the lines to realize that the hirees will be “detailed” to the Ark Park, presumably because AIG, as a religious organization, is allowed to discriminate on the basis of religion. I do not know why they are bothering, because recently a Kentucky judge ruled, in effect, that it was legal for the Ark Park itself... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Attacus atlas

Tue, 2016-04-12 01:25
Photograph by Diogenes. Photography contest, Honorable Mention. Attacus atlas – Atlas moth. This specimen is a captive male at the Museum of the Academy of Natural History of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News