This is scientist Zack Jud, posing with a lionfish he caught in a estuary river in 2010 — four years before 6th grader Lauren Arrington, who is now being credited with the discovery.
Jason posted about Lauren Arrington's science fair project here yesterday, and included a short update on this news, but I wanted to do a follow up post about Jud and his work. Not because I want to hate on a little girl, but because I think it's very important to make sure Jud's work doesn't get buried under an understandable impulse to appreciate awesome kids doing science. I'm sure Lauren Arrington made a great science fair project, but her work isn't new and doesn't come as a surprise to grown-up scientists. Particularly not to Jud, who published a peer-reviewed research paper on this very subject in 2011. It also wasn't a surprise to Lauren Arrington's father, D. Albrey Arrington, who was a named author on that paper, though he was not, according to Jud, directly involved in making the discovery. (Note that this is pretty normal for scientific research papers, especially those published by young scientists like Jud.)
My lionfish research is going viral…but my name has been intentionally left out of the stories, replaced by the name of the 12-year-old daughter of my former supervisor’s best friend. I feel like my hands are tied. Anything I say will come off as an attempt to steal a little girl’s thunder, but it’s unethical for her and her father to continue to claim the discovery of lionfish in estuaries as her own.
That is a very big deal. It's awesome that a kid wants to be involved in science. And it's totally understandable that we, as a society, want to cheer her on and want to hear her story. But those things should not outweigh the fact that somebody else did this research first and that he is now in the truly unenviable position of having his work widely known (super-important for an early-career scientist) but having his name erased from it.
Scientists discovered this new species of “glass frog” in Ecuador’s Amazon lowlands. Hyalinobatrachium yaku’s belly is so transparent that you can clearly see its kidneys, bladder, and beating heart. From Science News: Yaku means “water” in Kichwa, a language spoken in Ecuador and parts of Peru where H. yaku may also live. Glass frogs, like […]
Jennifer Raff — a bioanthropologist and geneticist who researches and teaches at U Kansas and U Texas — provides some excellent advice and context on how to read a scientific paper, from figuring out which papers and journals are worthy of your attention to understanding the paper in its wider context in the relevant field.
Apple released this lovely new commercial featuring Carl Sagan reading from his magnificent 1994 book Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space, now available as an audiobook. This surprising partnership spurred Adweek to interview my friend Ann Druyan, Sagan’s wife, collaborator, and creative director of the Voyager Golden Record, about being […]
Learning a new language will give your resume an upgrade, sure, but it will also provide a huge cognitive boost for mental tasks outside of translation and conversation. Bilingual brains have been shown to be better at handling multiple concurrent tasks, and gaining fluency in a new tongue is an amazing way to improve memory, […]
If you struggle to get a good night’s rest, consider replacing your pillows before dropping hundreds on a new mattress. You can give your tired neck a break with a 2-pack of memory foam pillows, available now in the Boing Boing Store.Each of these pillows is stuffed with cooling polyurethane foam that molds to your […]
Although flagship smartphones are unlikely to adopt heavy-duty outer casing anytime soon, you can always prepare your device for the outdoors with a beefy case and and an external battery like this Nomad Tile Trackable PowerPack, available in the Boing Boing Store for $119.95.The Nomad Tile can fully recharge an iPhone 7 over three times […]