Archive for November, 2014

An attempt to fathom out why Hamsters love PLOS

November 15, 2014
 (previously posted on my old blog) Thursday, 26 November 2009

An attempt to fathom out why Hamsters love PLoS…

My package from Razzle, sorry Zazzle arrived at work this morning.

This post by Bora aka Coturnix on 17th Nov essentially set the scene.

Closely followed by a FriendFeed thread:


And without any further ado, here is my cool PLoS hoodie:-

FAB !!!

Excellent quality material and online print on demand/shipping time from CA, USA to Scotland took only 7 working days. Nice one, Zazzle (plus they threw in a freebie white Zazzle t-shirt too).

Whilst I’ve wanted a “Hamsters love PLoS” garment for a while, I remain at a loss as to what the logo might actually mean. And even before wearing it, some peeps have been asking. I expect more to do so when I wear it to work tomorrow and down the pub afterwards.

So I searched teh interbebz and here’s what I found.

1) The connection of the logo to Not surprisingly, the best resource was from PLoS via this blog post by Liz Allen, July 2007:- “We hope that you like our picture entitled “Hamsters love”. It was drawn by one of our founders’ kids and has even appeared on a tee-shirt.”

OK, so there is the connection to PLoS.

2) But what about the hamster in the spherical object. Hhmm. During my search, I happened upon (again) the blog post, Impact Fauna January 2009 by a certain Dr Henry Gee, Senior Editor at

“Gee Minor models ScienceOnline09 swag, earlier today”

On the “X” loves “Y” front, I created a few images of my own. And here they are again….

A) Chickens love

B) Centaurs love Improbable Research

and C) Dolphins love Science


So, bearing mind the above and also, this

and that, comes to mind.

I’ve come to the conclusion that for whatever reason, Hamsters love PLOS. End of story. They just do.

If you support the likes of PLOS and Open Access, please do drop by the official PLoS store, have a good look around and happy shopping !!

1 comment:

Emma said…

I have the tshirt. I think the spherical object is supposed to be a hamster ball – the type they run around in?

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Ways to follow SpotOn London 2014 remotely

November 12, 2014


What is SpotOn?

SpotOn is a series of community events for the discussion of how science is carried out and communicated online.

The flagship conference is the annual SpotOn London two day event, formerly called Science Online London, and now in its seventh year. They also host monthly SpotOn NYC events in NYC.

SpotOn discussions fall into three broad topic areas – policy, outreach and tools – and their site collates the conversations and other archive material around all of the events.

If you have any questions or would like to contribute to the SpotOn site, just email

This year, the London event (13th – 15th November) kicks off with a Fringe Event, namely

Pint of Science with @SpotOnLondon & the second Fringe Event the next day is

SCIENCE SHOWOFF with SpotOn London – Fri 14th Nov, Star of Kings

The main event starts at 09:00 GMT 14th


“The annual conference, SpotOn London, will be taking place at the Wellcome Trust on Friday, 14 November and Saturday, 15 November 2014.

The two day event, which marks its seventh year, will be hosted by Nature Publishing Group, Palgrave Macmillan, Digital Science and the Wellcome Trust.  We’re also delighted to have Martin Fenner of PLOS joining us as a co-organiser again this year. SpotOn London is a dynamic, lively melting pot of scientists, science communicators, technologists, and those interested in science policy.

This year’s theme will be on the challenges of balancing the public and the private in the digital age. Friday will see panels, workshops and keynotes on topics including: sharing sensitive data, measuring social impact, open peer review and the right to be forgotten.

In an exciting change to our Saturday programme, SpotOn London will be hosting an unconference completely picked and run by the community within this year’s theme”

The programme can be accessed here and as you can see, there are individual Twitter hashtags for each session.

Moreover, as per previous years, the main event is being live-streamed for free.

So, how does one go about that you might ask ? Well, simply go to the programme and click on the session you would like to watch. Due to the wonders of modern technology, on the day, the live video should appear automatically and will be archived immediately for future viewing here.

So in closing, whilst the event itself is a sell-out, anybody can join in virtually 🙂 If you are on Twitter, the main # to follow for overall coverage is #solo14(was #solo13 a popular # ? – why yes, for a while it was the top # in the whole of the UK !!!).

10839497485_4c06fa99a7_z-1Hey, even Carl Zimmer joined in last year. Photo by Jason Wen.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »