Research is better with free food
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
3M ago
If there is one universal shared experience that I can, with some confidence, claim all researchers share then it is the love of free food. Be it biscuits, fruit, small strangely shaped corn things or sweets, every researcher feels the flutter of excitement at the addition of the word free before it. Since the very first days of my research career the prospect of free sandwiches or on very rare occasions, free vol-au-vents filled with grey stuff, was enough to improve any day of lectures. I once had to attend a whole day of training on how to use our internal HR holiday booking system and I am ..read more
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We cartooned a bunch of our comments
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
4M ago
Last week we put up a post on Facebook, Instagram and Mastodon asking for some sciency ideas to cartoon. We asked because first off we wanted to draw the things you want to see and secondly it’s always important to make sure there are not areas that are missing some well-deserved cartoons. You all responded very enthusiastically and filled the comments sections (and replies) with a whole host of sciencey ideas to choose from! So many in fact that it felt like far too much for one cartoonist, so we had to put up some kind of strange cartoon-style bat signal (it projects a poorly drawn stylus in ..read more
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How to survive your first lab meeting: a calming guide
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Billy Hinchen
5M ago
It’s today: your first lab meeting. You’ve got your slides together, tested the animations and so long as that one video loads, everything should be smooth sailing. But you’re probably still worrying, “What about Professor Knowsitall and the inevitable question? What if someone interrupts me? What if I forget what I’m talking about? What if they realise I’m an imposter?!!”.  It’s okay.  Breathe.  It really is okay. It’s just a talk. But we’ve been there and yeah, it can be scary. Thankfully, we’ve also done it loads and so we’re armed with tried and tested words of wisdom.  ..read more
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Announcing the best lab liquid award
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
5M ago
Research is in many ways a subject of debate. Ideas are presented with evidence and through repetition and discussion they are tested and examined. Every discovery or methodology in science is subject to inquiry, dissection and disagreement because that is at the very core, the point of the scientific method. There are few constants (even mathematical constants are the subject of much debate) and even fewer unanimous agreements. One exception to this is that scientifically water is obviously the best lab liquid. Now I don’t make that claim lightly. To give anything the lofty award of best in s ..read more
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Talking about “How to cartoon geology”
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
6M ago
We love cartoons. I doubt that comes as a shock to you, what with us being an entirely cartoon-based blog. But not only do we love the cartoons we make but we love basically all science cartoons and nothing would make us happier than there being hundreds of other science cartoonists out there. As it turns out the wonderful people at The Geological Society share this cartoon-based feeling and invited us up to their very fancy-looking London office at Burlington House to give a talk all about How to Cartoon Geology. We’ve given talks like this many times before but for this talk, we actually re ..read more
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I’m a science girl in a science world: Aqua does science
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
7M ago
In case you missed it the Barbie movie is a huge runaway meme-producing mega-hit of a movie. There’s a good reason why, it’s a great movie with some fantastic performances, a LOT of pink and even a cover of one of the best Barbie songs of all time ‘Barbie Girl’ by Aqua. Being a cartoonist of a certain age ‘Barbie Girl’ is burned deep into my brain by it being played far too much on radio stations and then played even more in bars and clubs for a solid decade. So when the Barbie movie came out all I could think about was that song, and being a science cartoonist this obviously led to the follow ..read more
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Commission: Stressed little ice grains
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
8M ago
A few months back we were contacted by Dr Johanna Kerch from the University of Göttingen in Germany looking for some cartoony help. Dr Kerch wanted a cartoon produced that she could use in her slides as part of her lectures on ice grain recrystallisation and how they deform and re-form into polycrystals. She very kindly sent us some ice core images and a request that there had better be cute faces. The above took a few versions. For starters the polar bear was once a penguin (wrong continent) and the cute faces weren’t nearly cute enough. But after we googled cute polar bears and brought in a ..read more
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Help needed for a study into women in STEM
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Heather Saigo
8M ago
Did you know there is a scientific research tool called the “Draw-a-scientist test” (DAST) that is used to understand how people perceive scientists? The DAST has been used to understand what people picture when asked to think about a scientist, with some fascinating results. Think about it for a moment. If you were to doodle a scientist right now, what would you draw? There is no correct answer. Just give it some thought, sketch something and if you feel like it, tag @ErrantScience and share it online. Unsurprisingly, the results of DAST and early research on children’s perceptions revealed t ..read more
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Scriptwriter seeks ecological #fieldwork fails
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Suw Charman-Anderson
9M ago
The funniest things happen when you’re out in the middle of a field – or bog, jungle, desert, wood, moor, alpine meadow – trying your best to do science. Sometimes, the science doesn’t want to be done and your equipment stops working. Sometimes your target species doesn’t play ball. Sometimes the weather intervenes. Sometimes, you just have a giant brainfart that derails everything. Rarely does everything go exactly to plan.  Fieldwork can be a deeply enjoyable and satisfying experience, even when things go awry. It’s also essential from a scientific point of view, providing opportunities ..read more
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RSCPoster 2023 winner cartoons!
The Errant Scientist | Errant Science
by Matthew (@MCeeP)
10M ago
Every year the Royal Society of Chemistry runs an amazing Twitter poster conference called RSCPoster. The conference runs for 24 hours and has thousands of participants from all over the world posting posters and talking chemistry! As with previous years, we drew cartoons live during the event for a whole bunch of people chosen at random by us. You can see all those cartoons in our previous blog post about the 2023 event. Now since then, the Royal Society of Chemistry have announced the winners of each of the RSCPoster categories and to celebrate their amazing posters the Royal Society o ..read more
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