Big day tomorrow – I think I’m just looking forward to the end of the political commercials. If not for my DVR I think I might have gone crazy. Good luck to you as your brave the lines tomorrow, hopefully the whole thing will go off with as few problems as possible. Here are some interesting links I’ve gathered over the past week. Enjoy!
1) Dirk Willard is a friend of John Peterson and Sun Recruiting and he’s a contributing editor over at ChemicalProcessing.com. He recently penned an article about environmental and safety regulations within the chemical industry. He posits that it is not the amount of environmental and safety regulations that are a problem, but rather the difficulty in determining both interpretation of some regulations and also which federal dept. holds jurisdiction for a given regulation. Definitely an interesting perspective, check it out: http://www.chemicalprocessing.com/voices/field-notes/
2) I’ve been seeing a lot of articles about scientific fraud lately – stories of academics or researchers who, under the pressure to meet deadlines or find evidence of a preconceived truth, fake data or manipulate the results to push an agenda. In fact, there is an entire website dedicated to tracking scientific retractions (click here). This article, published in The Guardian (UK) , argues that the way we fund and publish scientific information is responsible for most of this fraud and proposes some solutions that would place a higher premium on honesty and integrity within the scientific community: http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/blog/2012/nov/02/scientific-fraud-good-science
3) On this date in 1992, researchers discovered what is still thought to be the world’s oldest beer. The beer was discovered in 5,000 year old jugs in Iran – there obviously wasn’t standing liquid in these jugs, rather there were trace residues found in the grooves of the jugs that compared well on a chemical level with other known ancient beer discoveries. Wonder what it tasted like back then and if it was anything similar to what we enjoy today? http://www.wired.com/thisdayintech/2010/11/1105nature-5000-year-beer/
4) This article, published a few days ago on Forbes.com, argues that the U.S. Chemical Industry is set to boom because of cheap natural gas prices as a result of increased shale gas production. Mr. Fontevecchia thinks that the U.S. Chemical Industry may very well be the industry that leads the economy out of what has been a very weak recovery period: http://www.forbes.com/sites/afontevecchia/2012/11/01/chemicals-industry-exploding-in-the-u-s-as-cheap-natural-gas-sends-stocks-near-multi-year-highs/