There’s a Microbiome In My Tank!

Imagine a scenario—you’re studying the developmental biology of a species of squid. The squid don’t reproduce in captivity, so females carrying fertilized eggs are collected from the wild and rehomed in your lab’s aquariums. You’ve monitored all the normal aquarium conditions—pH, temperature, salinity—ensuring the animal’s new home mimics its natural environment.

But then, for no reason apparent to you, the clutch of eggs doesn’t develop and doesn’t hatch, derailing your research program until next year when you can collect more adult squid from the wild. What went wrong?

Continue reading “There’s a Microbiome In My Tank!”

The Font That Ate Manhattan

Blank canvas on easel

We can probably all think of something we do, whether at work or play, that we would describe as being “both an art and a science.” I have a few hobbies that qualify, but I’m a software developer by trade, and would certainly say that’s true of my job.

Sure, coding has many scientific aspects: there are best practices, design patterns and proven protocols for solving particular problems or addressing specific goals, and software developers love to experiment and prove their own theories about the best way to do something. But, sitting down at the keyboard to code can also feel like sitting down at a blank canvas with a brush, waiting for the muse to strike. Continue reading “The Font That Ate Manhattan”