Tuesday, December 28, 2010

What a Year! Top posts of 2010

It's been an exciting year here at Communicate Science - our first full year since launching the blog in the autumn of 2009.

As well as being nominated for an Irish Blog Award and an Irish Web Award, the blog was also shortlisted in the prestigious Eircom Spiders in the 'Big Mouth' category.

Readership has been steadily increasing throughout the year and we also now have over 330 followers on twitter.

I've got some rather big and exciting plans in store for the new year, but in the meantime it's interesting to look back on the 'most-read' posts from the blog this year. So, in reverse order:

Nine: James Watson: A Geneticist's View of Cancer
Scientific legend and renowned cancer researcher came to Cork and told us "People are so frightened by being wrong," he continued, "I figure that it doesn't matter if you're wrong, if you're sometimes right. The main thing is to try."

Eight: Number of the Week: 88%
Interesting how some posts just seem to take off unexpectedly. This post details the reaction to a Royal Society survey which found that 88% of 18-24 year-olds in the UK could not name any female scientific figure.

Seven: Sleep, Diet and Life Expectancy
A number of stories regarding the importance of sleep are covered in this post including the influence of starvation on sleep requirements and a possible link between serious sleep problems and mortality.

Six: Communicate Science @ The Eircom Spiders
This post pops up here probably due to some shameless plugging by yours truly and some helpful retweets by some very nice people. Glad to see the Eircom Spider went to a truly deserving winner.

Five: 3 Science Poems by Emily Dickinson
The poetry of Emily Dickinson was highlighted in this post, with three of here science-themed poems used. More than 200 of her poems make reference to scientific topics.

Four: The results are in: Spider vs Conker myth debunked
Some excellent outreach work by the Royal Society of Chemistry is featured in this very popular post. It looks at the very persistent old wives' tale.

Three: The Origin of Conor Lenihan
In September, Irish Minister of State with responsibility for Science, Conor Lenihan was found to be preparing to launch a book proclaiming that evolution was a "hoax". As you can imagine, the reaction from the scientific community was scathing and immediate.

Two: Plant Watch: Common Poppy - a cultural icon
One of our "Plant Watch" series of posts, this picked up a huge number of views in October and November.

One: Letting Boole's memory collapse doesn't add up
In October, this blog was the first to report, in any detail, on the partial collapse of the former home of George Boole - noted scientist and mathematician. In a series of posts and photo essays, we've covered the story in more detail than any other media outlet.

I believe this is an important story and I'll continue to cover it in the new year, when significant developments are expected. As we move into 2011, Number Five, Grenville Place, Cork City still lies derelict and open to the elements. Lets hope the new year will bring better news on this front.

Merry Christmas and a happy 2011 to all our readers!


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