When Scientists Give Up

By Richard Harris
Link recommended by Chris King Waters

Ian Glomski thought he was going to make a difference in the fight to protect people from deadly anthrax germs. He had done everything right — attended one top university, landed an assistant professorship at another.

But Glomski ran head-on into an unpleasant reality: These days, the scramble for money to conduct research has become stultifying.

So, he's giving up on science. Read more ...

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Internet outraged by Facebook's 'creepy' mood experiment

By Charles Riley
Link recommended by Malcolm Dcosta

Everyone has a bad day on occasion. But what if Facebook made it worse -- on purpose, and without telling you?

Internet users have reacted angrily to news that Facebook researchers manipulated the content some users were shown in an attempt to gauge their emotional response.

For one week in early 2012, Facebook (FB, Tech30) changed the content mix in the News Feeds of almost 690,000 users. Some people were shown a higher number of positive posts, while others were shown more negative posts. Read more ...

More links on Human and Animal Experimentation

As engineers, we must consider the ethical implications of our work

Link recommended by Lindsay Brull
Engineering ethics are mostly technical: how to design properly, how to not cut corners, and how to serve our clients well. Photograph: Bloomberg

One aspect of Edward Snowden's revelations in the Guardian about the NSA's surveillance activities has received less attention than it should. The algorithms that extract highly specific information from an otherwise impenetrable amount of data have been conceived and built by flesh and blood, engineers with highly sophisticated technical knowledge. Did they know the use to which their algorithms would be put? If not, should they have been mindful of the potential for misuse? Either way, should they be held partly responsible or were they just "doing their job"? Read more ...

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Case Study: Should you listen to a peer reviewer?

Link recommended by Stefan Madansingh

ORI will soon release a series of RCR case studies edited by Dr. James Dubois of St. Louis Univerity. The creation of the case studies was funded through ORI's RCR Resource Development program and involved a team of nearly 20 writers, contributors, and reviewers. These well-crafted case studies, along with role playing scenarios, will be available for instructors to incorporate into their institutions' RCR training programs. Below is one of many case studies that will be available. Read more ...

More links on Authorship and Peer Review