Mission Statement

My goal is to provide an educational forum where small science experiments in biology can be designed and executed in real time. Anyone who is interested can participate (see terms and conditions page) but I am aiming for an audience like myself: scientists at smaller schools, with laboratory facilities, undergraduate research assistants, and small, possibly non-existent budgets. Think of this site as a kind of virtual lab note book, to produce data and analysis as it happens, with all the zigs and zags that are tidily removed in publications and text books. Ugly westerns, funky controls, wild leaps in the wrong direction. A place to learn that science is not a matter of getting what you want, but wanting what you get. Students can follow each other’s work and mine. Other schools can join. There is no anonymity here. And if anybody wishes to weigh in with “that’s crap!” I welcome it. After all, that is how science works. All science works this way, big and small.

It is important to point out that participation on this site is NOT a substitute for peer-reviewed publication. The data you present here are not peer-reviewed in the formal way of publication. And because this site is public, your data are not protected here. It is possible, for instance, that a well-funded scientist might happen upon this site, and decide that the experimental design and analysis are useful, and he or she might simply redo the work and publish it without giving you any credit. It is also equally possible that someone might decide that you have generated useful materials that warrant collaboration which could lead to publication. Neither possibility can be ruled out.

So if you have data you think might be publishable, you should probably NOT present it here. You might well ask why I am even considering such an apparently crazy undertaking.  Frankly, I just want to do science. I have numerous small experiments and interesting questions that I would love to carry out, but which are unlikely to ever see the light of formal publication. So they shall live here, to serve as training wheels for future scientists.

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