Categories
Issue 13 Science (of) Fiction

From Obliviate to Neuralyzers – erasing and modifying memories

“Hermione! The tea is ready, darling!”

“Coming, mum!”

In the next frame we can see Hermione, portrayed by Emma Watson in the movie Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, coming down the stairs behind her parents’ back, pointing her magic wand towards them and saying the word Obliviate. I am guessing every Harry Potter fan reading this just experienced shivers down their spine, but for those who are not familiar with this book series and the movies that followed, Hermione just erased all memories of her from her parents’ minds.

Categories
Issue 13 News

One year of the Summer School of Science Blog

Can you believe it? It’s been a year since we first greeted you on this blog, and what a year it’s been. We started this blog as a way to connect with our amazing alumni community, but also to reach out to the world and show it what we’ve got, trying to survive 2020. And survive, we did, with your help! Today, we’d like to take a quick look back on this past year and what we’ve built – together.

Categories
Issue 12 Science (of) Fiction

Why are “rational” characters cold, arrogant jerks – and can we do better?


Sparks are flying everywhere. The ship is shaking from a barrage of enemy fire.

“If my calculations are correct, there is a 0.0243% chance of that plan succeeding!”, the rational character exclaims.

“Never tell me the odds!”, says the charismatic leader. The plan succeeds.

Similar situations happen episode after episode, improbable plans succeeding one after another, and the rational character never seems to think:

“Huh. I am really bad at estimating probabilities.”

Categories
Issue 12 Science Shoutout

What lies in humanity’s future?

Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot

Categories
Issue 12 News

Bumblekite scholarship opportunity for S3 alumni

Do you have skills in software and data, health-related disciplines (including biosciences and medicine), policymaking, or business? Then don’t miss out on this awesome learning opportunity! For the second year in a row, we’re bringing you a scholarship for attending the summer session of Bumblekite Online – a 6-week cohort-based, learning and development programme on Healthcare Data and AI Policy. The application deadline is 13 June 2021, whereas the programme will be held from 24 July – 5 September 2021.

Categories
Issue 12 Understanding Science

What happens when we mess up?

It is in the nature of medicine that you are gonna screw up; you are gonna kill someone.

Gregory House, on the TV show House
Categories
Academic Life Issue 12 PhD Presenting Alumni

Cédric Lood: “I’ve always felt that education is not a process that you complete but rather a continuous effort”

Today we are more than excited to present another one of our alumni – Cédric Lood. Cédric joined the Summer School of Science in 2018 as a project leader and is currently finishing his PhD in the field of computational biology. Cédric’s path in academia has been highly nonlinear and filled with different adventures and we are happy that he agreed to share his story with us. Let’s dive in!

Categories
Issue 11 Understanding Science

From dissections to CRISPR: animal use in biomedical research

World Day for Laboratory Animals is marked annually on the 24th of April to raise awareness about experimenting on animals. Animal models have been used for scientific purposes, such as helping us understand cell mechanisms, complex biological functions and in finding new cures for diseases. Due to anatomical and physiological similarities between humans and animals, especially mammals, potential medications, vaccines and therapies are first investigated on animal (and non-animal) models. Clearly, not all results conducted on animals can be directly applied to humans; rather, they help us understand crucial processes and decide whether it is safe to move on to the next level. It is almost impossible to imagine biomedical research being run without animal models as they are crucial for fundamental discoveries – from ancient dissections to contemporary gene editing technology.

Categories
Careers in Science Issue 11

Careers in Science: Academia

Co-author: Ivana Osredek

Hello, everyone! We are proud to present our new category – Careers in Science! As a natural sequel to our series of posts on studying abroad, where we compared the application processes for various countries and universities around the world, now we want to show you what the process of studying itself looks like and what path(s) you can take after completing your studies! In this issue, we will talk about different job opportunities in academia.

Academia is a widely used term for research and professorship. Unfortunately, it is not uniformly structured globally, since different countries have different names, qualifications and conditions for various positions. However, they are becoming standardized all over the world, which will enable researchers to study and improve their knowledge and skills wherever they want.

Categories
Issue 11 Science (of) Fiction

Star Wars and the Fo(u)rce

When you hear the name Star Wars, (possibly) the most popular saga in history, one of the first things that may come to mind is The Force. For those, however, who are guilty of not having seen the saga, The Force is an energy field created by all life that connects everything in the universe. Cool, right? What if I told you that there is actually a theory for our universe which states that all the known forces can be explained away with only four fundamental ones? The Standard Model is going to surprise you!