This post is intended to collect interesting news happening in science, technology, and academia.

Science

  • Bacteria exhale electricity. Livescience.com – 18 September 2020. Link
    Geobacter — a ubiquitous, groundwater-dwelling genus of bacteria — swallow up organic waste and “exhale” electrons, generating a tiny electric current in the process.”
  • Watch how sperm really swim. Sciencemag.org – 31 July 2020. Link
    “Though in two dimensions sperm appear to lash their tail from side-to-side in symmetric strokes, the reproductive cells actually move in a lop-sided manner, beating their tails to one side only, the team reports today in Science Advances.”
  • Scientists discover deep-sea bacteria has a metabolism unlike anything we’ve seen before. Scienceglobalnews.com – 3 April 2020. Link
    “Known as Acetobacterium woodii, scientists in Germany claim that this species, which also lives in the intestines of termites, can both create and use hydrogen and carbon dioxide to produce energy all on its own, even without the need for oxygen. ”
  • The inventor of H-index said H-index can “fail spectacularly and have severe unintended negative consequences”. Natureindex.com – News – 24 March 2020. Link
    “One has to look at the nature of the work,” says Hirsch (the H-index inventor). “If you make decisions just based on someone’s H-index, you can end up hiring the wrong person or denying a grant to someone who is much more likely to do something important. It has to be used carefully.”
  • Highly cited researcher banned from journal board for citation abuse. Nature – News – 06 February 2020. Link
    “According to the editorial, Chou asked authors of dozens of papers he was editing to cite a long list of his publications – sometimes more than 50 – and suggested that they change the titles of their papers to mention an algorithm he has developed.”
  • The first picture of a black hole. Space.com – News – 10 April 2019. Link
    “For the first time ever, humanity has photographed one of these elusive cosmic beasts, shining light on an exotic space-time realm that had long been beyond our ken.”

Technology