Field of Science

Random sick day crap. Also gas exchange.

Other people blog about stuff I've blogged about. Imagine that.

- Neuroskeptic tackles the issue of autism and wealth.
- Allison at Dormivigilia blogs about referee bias in soccer.

I also discovered a very useful blog today called Better Posters. It is all about how to make better scientific posters, and surprisingly active considering the subject. How much can there possibly be to say about how to make a poster? Apparently a lot.

I've been way too unproductive today. I took a sick day off work because I had a rough night last night and a rough morning this morning, so I've been sitting around all day eating soup, reading Calvin and Hobbes (mom got me the collector's edition for my birthday, holy crap), and napping. I have a general feeling of malaise but no real symptoms aside from a sore throat and meh stomach (not exactly nauseated, but upset in some way I can't articulate), so hopefully this is just a funk and it'll go away by tomorrow. I'm hoping it is just stress and anxiety (possibly related to the pressure to churn out my manuscript, perhaps?) and not any kind of actual illness.

I missed lecture today on one of my favorite subjects to think about but one of my least favorite subjects to try to explain to students: gas exchange.

No matter HOW many times I try to explain the oxyhemoglobin dissociation curve, most of my students just don't get it. It's a pretty abstract idea that can be hard to absorb for a lot of students, especially when they only have the minimum prerequisites of 5 credit hours of biology or chemistry in order to take this class. To put it very simply, hemoglobin binds to oxygen when the partial pressure of oxygen is high (such as in the lungs) and kicks off oxygen when the PP of oxygen is low (such as in tissues that are actively doing work). I don't know what makes this so hard to grasp. If I were a better teacher I'd probably be able to communicate it in a more intuitive way. Fortunately I don't aspire to be a teacher after grad school.

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