Phys .org: As shutdown drags on, scientists scramble to keep insects, plants and microbes alive

Phys .org: As shutdown drags on, scientists scramble to keep insects, plants and microbes alive. “Three days a week, Don Weber shows up to work at the U.S. Department of Agriculture campus in Beltsville, Md. The parking lot is empty and the hallways are dark. Like other federal facilities across the country, the lab is closed because of the partial government shutdown. ‘It’s like a ghost town,’ said Weber, an entomologist. But he has to perform an important task: feeding the hundreds of insects he raises in his lab, which keep hatching, mating and dying, oblivious to the political showdown in Washington, D.C.”

The Verge: How The Government Shutdown Could Harm The Future Of American Science

The Verge: How The Government Shutdown Could Harm The Future Of American Science. “Graduate students and early-career researchers are watching what the government has done to their colleagues at shuttered federal agencies like the National Science Foundation and the Department of the Interior, and they’re not liking what they’re seeing. For some, the ongoing threat of government shutdowns isn’t enough to change their career goals. But for others, it’s making them rethink whether a career in the federal government is really worth the frustration. ‘I don’t know if I want a job that could be used as a pawn to further someone’s agenda,’ says Kathleen Farley, a graduate student at Rutgers University-Newark.”

Nature: Crowdfunding research flips science’s traditional reward model

Nature: Crowdfunding research flips science’s traditional reward model. “No papers? No problem. Scientists who have historically been at a disadvantage when pursuing traditional funding sources — for example, those who lack extensive experience or who do not demonstrate a good publication record — are now the most successful at sourcing money from the public.”

Peer-reviewed physics for Wikipedia: PLOS ONE Topic Pages (PLOS One Blog)

PLOS One Blog: Peer-reviewed physics for Wikipedia: PLOS ONE Topic Pages. “Despite Wikipedia’s importance as a resource for both practicing physicists and the wider community, it is rare for professional physicists to contribute, in part because there are few, if any, professional incentives to do so. We’re all in agreement that researchers should receive proper attribution for our work (which is why PLOS ONE supports ORCID); and as credit is not given for submitting or editing Wikipedia pages, only a small fraction of the physicists that I asked about this have edited even a single Wikipedia page. With this in mind, we’re excited to introduce PLOS ONE Topic Pages, which are peer-reviewed review articles written with Wikipedia in mind. These provide opportunities for author attribution and will result in both journal articles and Wikipedia pages of high quality and utility.”

Science: How to shine in Indonesian science? Game the system

Science: How to shine in Indonesian science? Game the system. “Last July, when Indonesia’s Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education (RISTEK) here honored eight researchers, along with institutions and journals, for their exceptional contributions to science, observers noticed something odd. Many of the laureates were relatively unknown academics from second-tier universities; underdogs had apparently become leaders. It didn’t take curious scientists long to figure out why.”

The Next Web: How social media dilutes scientific discoveries into clickbait

The Next Web: How social media dilutes scientific discoveries into clickbait. “Millions of Americans shape their ideas on complex and controversial scientific questions – things like personal genetic testing, genetically modified foods and their use of antibiotics – based on what they see on social media. Even many traditional news organizations and media outlets report incomplete aspects of scientific studies, or misinterpret the findings and highlight unusual claims. Once these items enter into the social media echo chamber, they’re amplified. The facts become lost in the shuffle of competing information, limited attention or both.”