Follow my passion? <^>(-_-)<^> Writer Elizabeth Gilbert on NPR's TED Radio Hour
I overheard this interview with Ms Gilbert and it spoke so strongly to me that I had to transcribe it and share it :)
"We keep telling people to follow their passion and i feel like that it can an intimidating and almost cruel thing to say to people.
Because first of all, if people have one central powerful burning passion, they are probably already following it, because that’s sort of the definition of passion, that you don’t have a choice.
If you don’t have a central burning passion, which is a lot of people, and somebody tells you to follow your passion, I think you have the right to give that person the finger. Because it just makes you feel worse.
And so I always tell people forget about it! If you don’t have an obvious passion just forget about it - follow your curiosity because passion is a tower of flame that is not always accessible. And curiosity is something that anybody can access any day .
Your curiosity may lead you to your passion, or it may not. It may have been for “nothing.”
In which case, it means all you’ve done your entire life is spent your existence in pursuit of things that made you felt curious and inspired, and that should be good enough.
If you get to do that, that’s a wonderful way to have spent your time here.”
Announcement of the February winners of the Étudiants-chercheurs étoiles Award
Montreal, February 4, 2013 – Québec’s Chief Scientist, Rémi Quirion, is pleased to announce the February winners of the Étudiants-chercheurs étoiles Award, a competition spearheaded by the three Fonds de recherche du Québec.
In addition to promoting careers in research, the competition aims to recognize the exceptional research contributions of college and university students, postdoctoral fellows and members of professional bodies who are enrolled in advanced research training programs in the areas covered by the three Fonds de recherche du Québec.
Every month, each Fund will award $1000 to a student researcher. An overview of the recipient’s project and a photo of the recipient will be featured on the Web site www.frq.gouv.qc.ca.
Dr. Quirion sends his congratulations to the winners.
The PQ plan to penalise party hoppers is perverted, and here's why
This is a terrible idea! One of the things that keeps political parties honest is that if their leaders get too crazy, members can dissent. Let’s not forget that in Canadian politics, we vote for people, not parties, at least as far as the ballot box goes. I’m all for a move towards a constitutional change that recognizes the reality that people vote along party lines, but let’s start by addressing the fact that our current system distorts the distribution of seats and discriminates against Montrealers. Let’s not make our problems worse.
Under this new law, an MP could possibly be fined $600,000 if he or she is expelled from her party for disagreeing with it. The idea has outrageous corruption written all over it. There are other ways of dealing with party cohesion and deputies’ responsibilities to the VOTERS IN THEIR RIDING, not their leader. This law proposal is nothing more than a half-assed backdoor attempt at a constitutional change that would favour and entrench divisive wedge politics.
I'm thinking about blogging casually (and maybe professionally later on) about science but I really don't know how to start. For example, what platform should I favour (Facebook, Tumblr, Wordpress, Twitter)?
Thanks for your question! Well, I have to admit that I’m kinda muddling through this myself. I like Tumblr because it’s very easy to use, especially in terms of letting people share your content. It’s basically the Apple of blogging. However, just like Apple, it comes with some constraints in terms of what you can do with it. If you want to get super fancy in terms of customizing your blog, I think the general consensus is that Wordpress is the way to. Also, as the name would suggest, I think Wordpress users tend to write more lengthy articles. Tumblr is more about the animated gifs, lol.
In short, my recommendation is that if you think you’ll write more than two paragraphs, and/or if you know a lot about HTML, I would go with Wordpress. If you think you’ll be more often writing shorter posts, and if you want people to be able to share what you write easily, I would go with Tumblr.
As for Facebook and Twitter, they are tools that can help you share what you post on your blog. You can even integrate them directly into Tumblr (and Wordpress too, I presume) so that the title of your post automatically becomes a tweet or a Facebook update.
I hope that helps! Blogging is a lot of fun and can even help you professionally.
I had to tell someone I love last night that lemon juice will not cure his cancer. FUCK antiscientific rumours and false hope. They just distract from the best possible medical healthcare and the reality of the situation a person faces. Hundreds of thousands of people around the world are dedicating their lives, wholeheartedly, to a cure. They publish what they discover in books that anyone can read. When they find something that helps, we all know about it, including front line doctors. There is no evil conspiracy to hide the cure, it’s not hidden a test-tube somewhere in a vault. I wish it was, because it wouldn’t take long for someone else to replicate the result anyway. Next time you see some FUCKING BULLSHIT on the Internet, don’t hesitate to stomp it out.
McGill and Université de Montréal researchers revealed yesterday that autism-like behaviors can be rectified in adult mice with compounds inhibiting protein synthesis, or with gene-therapy targeting neuroligins (a membrane protein that regulates synapse formation between neurons.) Their study is published in the journal Nature.
“The autistic behaviours in mice were prevented by selectively reducing the synthesis of one type of neuroligin and reversing the changes in synaptic excitation in cells,” explained Prof. Jean-Claude Lacaille at the University of Montreal’s Groupe de Recherche sur le Système Nerveux Central and Department of Physiology. “In short, we manipulated mechanisms in brain cells and observed how they influence the behaviour of the animal.” The researchers were also able to reverse changes in inhibition and augment autistic behaviors by manipulating a second neuroligin. “The fact that the balance can be affected suggests that there could be a potential for pharmacological intervention by targeting these mechanisms.”
“Since the discovery of neuroligin mutations in individuals with ASD in 2003, the precise molecular mechanisms implicated remain unknown,” said Christos Gkogkas, a postdoctoral fellow at McGill and lead author. “Our work is the first to link translational control of neuroligins with altered synaptic function and autism-like behaviors in mice. The key is that we achieved reversal of ASD-like symptoms in adult mice. Firstly, we used compounds, which were previously developed for cancer treatment, to reduce protein synthesis. Secondly, we used non-replicating viruses as vehicles to put a break on exaggerated synthesis of neuroligins.”
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) encompass a wide array of neurodevelopmental diseases that affect three areas of behaviour: social interactions, communication and repetitive interests or behaviors. According to the U.S.-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 88 children suffer from ASD, and the disorder is reported to occur in all racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups. ASDs are almost five times more common among boys (1 in 54) than among girls (1 in 252).