Saturday, February 21, 2009

Rod Page talks taxonomy

If I lived in London, this is what I would be doing on March 17th:

Rod Page, Professor of Taxonomy at Glasgow University will be giving two talks in London about taxonomy on March 17th. These will be at the Natural History Museum and later at the British Library. Details as follows:

"Going digital: what's in it for taxonomy and taxonomists?"
Flett Theatre, NHM from 11-12.30, refreshments from 10.30.

"What's in a name: Taxonomy in Crisis"
British Library, 18-20.30.

Via Vince Smith's blog

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Kaspari & Davidson receive NSF funds to work on BCI

Good stuff from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute:

NSF granted funds to do research on BCNM to STRI research associate Michael Kaspari from the University of Oklahoma ($324K) and Adam Kay Davidson, St. Thomas University ($316K) for the project “Toward stoichiometric theory of ant ecology--from colony performance to community composition," on Barro Colorado Nature Monument. This project explores a basic goal of evolutionary ecology: to understand how organisms respond to environmental challenges and to scale that information up to predict the behavior of communities and ecosystems.

The big goal is to detail the natural history of 50-75 common ant species, link their reproductive biology to the colony's niche, and access the degree to which those niches are phenol typically plastic.
Also of interest is the fact that this was announced through their Twitter feed. Rock on Smithsonian!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Videos on EOL

Looks like the Encyclopedia of Life is now indexing videos as well as images from Flickr. Just upload your videos to the EOL group in Flickr and tag it with with a species name. The videos will should then be featured in EOL species pages. The Honeybee (Apis mellifera) page has an example. From EOL:

Since the group began less than 6 months ago contributors have submitted over 13,000 photos and now over 200 videos which are shown in EOL species pages. Follow the instructions on our group homepage and learn how to submit and tag your photos and videos. We encourage everyone to check out the EOL Flickr group and start submitting photos and videos today!
So.... let's get some ant videos up there!

Friday, February 13, 2009

SPADE update

"Dear Collegues/Friends and SPADE Users,
Thank you for your use/interest/request of SPADE program in the past. (SPADE: Species Prediction And Diversity Estimation). I also thank many users for very helpful comments and feedbacks, which have led substantial improvement in SPADE. Now SPADE has been recently updated/modified and added two new parts: multiple-community similarity/diversity measures and genetic applications. In the genetic application part, we have featured Jost's differentiation measure
D proposed in Jost (2008, Molecular Ecology,17, 4015-4026).

The latest version of SPADE (2009/Feb 13 Version) and the revised User Guide now can be freely downloaded online from by just clicking SPADE there. The installation procedures have been greatly simplified. Please also note that the data input format for frequency or abundance data in one community case has been properly modified in order to be consistent with data format for multiple communities. Your comments, thoughts and suggestions are always welcome."
Best regards, Anne Chao
Tsing Hua Distinguished Chair Professor
Institute of Statistics
National Tsing Hua University
Hsin-Chu, TAIWAN

Slogging through the setbacks

I have been out of commission for awhile with severe bronchitis and something called hyper-reactive airway syndrome, whatever that means. I spent 2 days in the hospital and am currently working from home because doing things like going outside in the cold distresses my lungs. At what point did I become an old person? I am back to working on my big paper and will hopefully have more to say on that matter soon. Cheers!