Recently in Steve Steve Category

Giant panda gives birth

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Professor Steve Steve reports that his distant relative Mei Xiang gave birth to a cub at the National Zoo yesterday. NPR reports that the zoo did not know that the panda was pregnant until recently, when, according to Professor Steve Steve, she told her keepers that she “might be just a little bit pregnant.” Reuters reports that scientists will shortly perform a paternity test. You may see a webcam shot of the giant panda here.

Today, Evolution 2010 concluded with a star-studded banquet, and I managed to catch a picture with Dr. Jerry Coyne at the end of the dinner.

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In the Zone

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Y’all may remember the last world-famous person I hung out with. I’m currently hobnobbing it with many famous people at the Evolution meeting in Portland. Today I got to meet in person a regular contributor to our site:

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Sweet, huh!

If you are at the conference and want your picture with me, just track down Reed Cartwright. He’s giving a talk Monday morning.

My Genome is Sequenced!

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panda_nature.jpg You humans have finally finished sequencing my genome—okay, not exactly mine but a cousin’s. Some of you might be thinking about using this to clone me. But I own the copyright to myself so you can’t do anything!

I’m busy clubbin’ with some seal friends of mine right now and haven’t had the time my species needs to digest such monumental work. I recommend Matthew Cobb’s take on the giant panda genome.

Mr. Jimmy and Me

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Earlier this month I attended a dinner party with President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn.

Prof. Steve Steve and Pres. Jimmy Carter

Pres. Jimmy Carter meets Prof. Steve Steve

Mr. Mystery

Prof. Steve Steve had an exciting weekend; you’ll never guess whom he had dinner with.

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Prof. Steve Steve and Mr. Mystery

The marketing people at Quark Expeditions have a contest going to send a blogger on one of their Antarctic expeditions next year. They will send a blogger along simply based on votes, a straight-up popularity contest. This seems like an opportunity that I shouldn’t miss. I’m eager to compare my sartorial style with the resident penguin colonies down there, and I’m sure that dodging crabeater or Weddell seals should simply add a certain zest to the adventure for someone of my diminutive stature.

Unfortunately, there is some speciesism involved, and I’ll have to make do with using my designated Sherpa for the trip, Wesley Elsberry, as my proxy in the voting process. We’re still discussing which one of us gets smuggled along in the luggage. I’ve told him that that is what duffel bags are for. Wesley makes for a pretty good Sherpa, what with his interdisciplinary background in marine biology and computer science. He’s also handy with a camera and acoustics gear, and does some wicked blogging himself. Of course, it’s not a patch on my own set of qualifications, including the B. Amboo Chair in Creatoinformatics at the University of Ediacara, a J.D.-M.D.-quintuple Ph.D., and being a seven-time Nobel nominee. As the Izaak Walton of information theory and the Ulysses S. Grant of drinking contests, I can recognize talent for myself and exploit it. Sorry, the new word is collaboration, isn’t it? We did well working together at the 2005 Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial, and I’m looking forward to some more, er, collaboration in the cold.

So, Freeze Me, Please! Voting runs through September 30th, so please pass this on. Here’s an 88x31 pixel badge you can use by copying the code below:

<a href="http://echothis.info/V0">
<img src="http://pandasthumb.org/images/pss/pss_freeze_me_badge_88x31.gif" />
</a>

Last week I had the opportunity to attend the 9th North American Paleontological Convention in Cincinnati. ’Twas a grand old time, mingling with a lot of seriously excellent scientists.

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Besides the excellent science, a highlight was the panel I sat on. This session was held over lunch on Thursday, and the subject was “Countering Creationism”. I was joined by Panda’s Thumb contributors Richard Hoppe, Jason Rosenhouse, and Art Hunt.

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1000 Steves on Darwin’s 200th!

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The 1000th Steve of Project Steve, also known as the kilosteve, is going to be announced at the Annual Meeting of the AAAS this weekend. See the NCSE press release: Who will be Steve #1000?

(PS: What’s the Discovery Institute non-Steve-required-and-often-otherwise-dubious list at? 700? Meh. The creation scientists had a better list in the 1980s.)

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Unfortunately, it was one of these tickets. Oh well…

Prof Steve Steve rules

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After Prof Steve Steve encouraged fellow Steve’s to sign the NCSE petition, the Steve Steve counter did not only pass 900 but ended up at 930!.

Evolution is a vital, well-supported, unifying principle of the biological sciences, and the scientific evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the idea that all living things share a common ancestry. Although there are legitimate debates about the patterns and processes of evolution, there is no serious scientific doubt that evolution occurred or that natural selection is a major mechanism in its occurrence. It is scientifically inappropriate and pedagogically irresponsible for creationist pseudoscience, including but not limited to “intelligent design,” to be introduced into the science curricula of our nation’s public schools.

To see if you qualify, just answer the following simple questions:

  • Are you named Steve, Stephen, Steven, Esteban, Etienne, or Stephanie?
  • Do you have a Ph.D. in biology, geology, paleontology, or a related scientific field?
  • Do you want the kind of success in life you always thought was reserved for the “other Steves”?

If you answered yes to all three of these questions, then you have what it takes to become an NCSE Steve!

Looking for Dr. 900

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The National Center for Science Education is looking for a few good Steves to join them in standing up to the culture warriors that threaten the very foundations of science and science education. They need just a handful of new Steves to sign up, and then they can make “900” t-shirts.—At last count they had 895.—I only have three names, so I’m putting a call out to all my Steves, Stephens, Stephanies, et al., who’ve earned doctoral degrees, to join us in denouncing the campaign to box science into the ’30s—the 1530s.

Creationists love to name drop. They compile lists of random people that hate evolution like they do—“my pa waz no munkie”—and then present those lists as expert testimony against the modern world. In response, NCSE developed Project Steve, a list of academics, scholars, and scientists that support evolution and oppose the anti-evolution movement.

There is just one catch: the signers have to be named after me.

I know, I know. Some of you are asking, “who isn’t named after the illustrious Prof. Steve Steve?” And I’ll tell you what, too many people are not named after me. However, that top 1% that are named after me are the smartest people in the world, Stephen Baldwin excluded. We Steves are so smart that even the US Congress has started focusing on our opinions on important issues like global warming and polar bear biology.

So what can we Steves do for the other 99%?

We can use our vast intellects and experience to agree with the following statement:

Evolution is a vital, well-supported, unifying principle of the biological sciences, and the scientific evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the idea that all living things share a common ancestry. Although there are legitimate debates about the patterns and processes of evolution, there is no serious scientific doubt that evolution occurred or that natural selection is a major mechanism in its occurrence. It is scientifically inappropriate and pedagogically irresponsible for creationist pseudoscience, including but not limited to “intelligent design,” to be introduced into the science curricula of our nation’s public schools.

Come on, all the other Steves are signing it, why don’t you?

Steve Steve in London

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Steve Steve is having the time of his life at the Nature Network conference. Right now, he’s slumped over on the podium, recovering from yesterday’s festivities. A picture is found below.

The question for you is this: Who is Steve Steve explaining evolution to?

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Darwin Day in Kentucky

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On Feb 12, I had the opportunity to drop in on some friends in Lexington, Kentucky to help celebrate Darwin Day there. The occasion was the Darwin Day presentation by Dan Phelps (pictured here) entitled “The Anti-Museum: An Overview and Review of the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum”, and the following panel discussion. The presentation was a summation of Dan’s review of the Creation Museum in Northern Kentucky. This review has been published by NCSE, and may be read at the NCSE web site.

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Happy Darwin Day!

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Today is Darwin Day. Get out and learn some biology!

If you have links to Darwin Day events or posts, send them in. There is also a Darwin Day carnival being run by ScientificBlogging.com.

By way of GrrlScientist, I notice that Fieldiana (the journal of the Field Museum is now freely available online. For us here at the Panda’s Thumb, it means that DD Davis’ classic study “The giant panda: a morphological study of evolutionary mechanisms” of 1964 can now be enjoyed by one and all. Over three hundred pages, detailing everything you’d want to know about giant panda morphology. Steve Steve urges you all to check it out!

Last January Prof. Steve Steve, Bora, and I met Congressman Brad Miller (D-NC) at the NC Science Blogging Conference. We took the opportunity to explain to him NCSE’s Project Steve and our Project Steve Steve.

Rep. Miller is the Chairman of the House Science and Technology subcommittee on Oversight and Investigation and promised us that he’d ask science skeptics that testify before him “How many are named Steve?”.

Today, he did it:

Do you all know any climate skeptics … named Steve?

During a hearing about the impact of global warming on the arctic he unexpectedly asked the panel if they knew any Steves that agreed with them. The global warming skeptics couldn’t name any off the top of their head, while the global warming researchers named two.

Miller also gave the Panda’s Thumb a plug for good measure.

The discussion about Steves begins a bit before one hour, fourteen minutes (1:14) in the RealPlayer clip of the hearings. It continues for a few minutes.

I’d love to see the clip on youtube if anyone can extract it. If not, a transcript would be nice. (A lot of people don’t like dealing with RealPlayer.)

I guess that Miller had a good time bringing up Project Steve because he directed his staff to email us about it.

Hopefully, more politicians will follow his example when dealing with “expert” testimony.

Recent Photo Shoots

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I’m with the Banned

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With great pleasure I hooked up via teh internet with those crazy cats at the AtBC (After the Bar Closes) disscussion forum last month, to visit the Darwin Exhibition at the Field Museum in Chicago! (I love people who diss creationism.)

Before I describe our adventure, I want to remind you that you can join my Facebook group, or friend me on MySpace. The Facebook group also serves as the fan group for PT. I also have a gallery of pictures from my adventures that you can look through. I working on collecting all my pictures there.

Also don’t forget to submit your best science blogging posts to the 2007 Science Blogging Anthology and join us at the 2008 Science Blogging Conference.

I recently had the opportunity to return down-under to visit with some esteemed colleagues at Evolution 2007.—I last visited the Evolution meeting in 2005 when it was held in Fairbanks, Alaska.—Prior to the start of this meeting, I blazed across the South Island, in a stylish “rental car”—more like a cardboard box with bicycle tires—with two old drinking companions from the University of Arizona. No sooner had I begun my adventure than I had a close encounter with a truck full of sheep driving down the wrong side of the road. It was a close shave. Now, it turns out those crazy Kiwis drive on the left. Don’t they know “left” and “sinister” are synonymous in certain languages?

I didn’t let their harebrained traffic laws hinder my opportunity to explore as much of the South Island as possible. During my travels, I had the opportunity to become the first panda (and the first J.D.-M.D.-Quintuple Ph.D.) to climb a glacier.

Despite an attempt on my life when one of my companions “fell” in an ice river, I reached the top unscathed. With the help of my guide, Rebecca, I left a University of Ediacara flag upon the Glacier to memorialize my illustrious achievement.

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