May 30, 2012

Where Honey Comes From

Honey is associated with bees, to be sure, but most people don't really think twice about how bees are really making it. The fact is, it's partially digested nectar regurgitated by the bees. I wonder why honey sellers don't market it this way. I'm sure people would be more than understanding.

Yeah, you're probably not going to see such an honestly labeled jar of honey, but let's give thanks to those little guys. They work very hard to give us this sweet, sweet treat.

May 21, 2012

Beatrice New Store Giveaway

Guess what! I set up a new store where you can buy Beatrice stuff! I can now create countless different types of t-shirts and coffee mugs, so I will be updating it often with any merchandise-worthy stuff I draw. Also, if you have a request for a particular drawing on a t-shirt or mousepad or what-have-you, just let me know.

To celebrate this wonderful day, I'm doing a Beatrice giveaway!
Ze Grand Prize: Any 1 item from the Beatrice the Biologist store! Anything! You get to pick!

3 runners-up will receive a Beatrice the Biologist button and a love note.

Winners will be announced on June 4.

May 16, 2012

Teaching the Controversy and Other Bad Ideas

The latest iteration in euphemistic attacks against teaching evolution is called "teaching the controversy." This is what creationists consider a compromise of some sort. They ask that if you simply must teach evolution (sigh), you should at least teach the controversy, meaning teach evidence for and against evolution.

I've never found a concept so maddeningly frustrating and totally hilarious before. Oh, those creationists.

Let's not even go into the fact that there is no scientific evidence against evolution. I have stuff to do. Instead, let's take a moment to ponder the equivalent of "teaching the controversy" (otherwise known as "teaching fear of information") in other subjects.

In math class:

In chemistry class:

In history class:

That's right. If we entertain the notion of teaching "evidence" against evolution, we might as well teach that the Holocaust may not have happened. Also, 9/11 may have been an inside job, and the moon landing was an elaborate hoax. But don't worry; we're just going to "teach" the "evidence" on both sides of "the issue." This is education, people.

Idea! How about we don't do this?

May 09, 2012

Dino Farts

The big science news this week is that dinosaurs farted a lot, which could have contributed to global warming those millions of years ago. I want to savor this moment--the time I can draw a dinosaur passing gas, while still being relevant and scientific. This may be the best day of my life.

The slight downside to this news is that I suspect climate change doubters will apply strange logic to this finding to re-convince themselves that climate change isn't real.

So dinosaur farts warmed the planet millions of years ago, and now car and cow farts are doing it. It makes you wonder if there is some kind of epic fart cycle at work here...

Only a small amount of fossil fuels are the remains of dinosaurs, but still. It makes you think. It makes you think about farts. All kinds of farts.

May 07, 2012

Time to Play AMOEBOiD!

Egad! The time has come! Amoeboid is on the app store for iPhone and iPad! You can financially support my insanity for just $0.99! And please rate the game to encourage people who don't know about Beatrice to buy the app!

If you do not have an iPhone or iPad, perhaps you know someone who does and can highly recommend this to them.

The details: Amoeboid is a science edutainment game: the gameplay is based on science/biology/microbiology, but it is first and foremost a mini arcade-style game. I hope you like it!

If this app does well particularly well, I could do Beatrice things on a more full-time basis, which means more than one post per week, more videos, more comics, more craziness. Does that mean I'm technically bribing you? Perhaps. It might also be blackmail. I'll reflect more on this later.

But I (obviously) didn't do this alone. I worked with programmer Niilo Tippler and artist Chris Tokunaga to make this happen. They are starting their own venture into game development called Tip Tok. Check them out!

Thanks for your support!

May 04, 2012

Science Online Teen

I have some cool news. I have been asked to lead a session at the Science Online Teen conference in April 2013 in New York! 

This conference is a spin-off of the yearly Science Online conference, held at North Carolina State University. It brings together science bloggers and journalists from all over the country. 

Stacy Baker, of the extremely successful Extreme Biology blog, is organizing the first Science Online Teen conference, and she is holding a contest for the logo. Let's help her out, shall we? If you are a teenager, submit a design. If you are not one of these "teenager people," find one and demand that he/she design something.

Da logo contest rules:
  • Only students age 13-19 can enter. (This refers to actual age, not mental age.)
  • The submitted work must be the original work of the submitter and must contain no copyrighted material. 
  • The submitter should use the Science Online logo (shown at the top of this page) as a guide for what the logo should look like. 
  • Submissions must be in a high-resolution format. Suggested formats include Adobe Illustrator or PNG files. 
  • Individuals may submit up to 3 entries.
Entries may be submitted to with LOGO CONTEST in the subject line.

Can't wait until next April!

May 03, 2012

Bears Like Graham Crackers

The first post I did after I bought my fancy Wacom tablet was (for really no good reason at all) about a bear encounter I once had while camping. Now that I'm on a gif-making binge of sorts, I thought this could use some gif-ifying.


May 01, 2012

When Oyster Mushrooms Attack

A while back I posted pictures of my mushroom kit's growth. I turned them into a gif for your enjoyment/horror. I don't recommend starting at it too long. It can't be good for your brain.

And now that I know how to make gifs, prepare yourself for a lot more. It's going to get awesome-weird around here.