One example of the type of post we might expect to see on this blog came up when Jen, a member of the SCIE 300 development team, recently sent an email about a colleague who published a paper in Nature about glass films, which then got coverage in the Vancouver Sun. Here’s what Jen said:
My colleague Mark Maclachlan recently published a paper in Nature. The Vancouver Sun has a full page spread on his paper.
Just like this post, we encourage you to include examples of research that has received media attention, linking to both the original paper and the news coverage. In addition, you should offer your thoughts on how it was presented, perhaps comparing the way different media outlets portrayed the work. Or use the work as a stepping stone to a different, related topic.
For example, the work was also covered on the CBC Radio program Quirks and Quarks. It’s described on their blog and you can also listen to the audio here:
After listening to the piece, you might comment on the fact that this development in Dr. Maclachlan’s lab was serendipitous. What other examples of scientific serendipity are you familiar with? Have you ever “discovered” anything by accident?
This piece of research also clearly highlights the importance of fundamental research. Sure, it will probably lead to highly useful applications, but it was fundamental research that originally led the scientists to this result.