Predictions for 2011

Jan 02 2011 Published by under Blogosphere, Cultural Observation, Silliness

Well, last year was fun, wasn't it? Papers were published and retracted, there were the usual collective moans about poor journalism, and science advanced a few steps.

The scientific blogosphere enjoyed a bit of an upheaval, which lead to this blog being started. GrrlScientist and I are still trying to work out what we should use it for (we both do cute cat photos and videos on our other blogs).

So, what's in store for this year? Here are a few predictions that will be flushed down the memory sometime in February:

January: The Battle of the Science Blogging Networks starts after a contretemps at ScienceOnline '11. The online war rages between ScienceBlogs, Scientopia, PLoS blogs, Occam's Typewriter and LabSpaces (or LabSpace as it is now known). A later analysis of the exchanges reveals that the only substantive point of contention raised is whether "asshat" should be spelled "arsehat" in British English.

February: Bora kidnapped and forced to blog at ScienceBlogs again. He crashes the website by publishing 734 posts in a single day after his twitter account is automatically fed to his blog. This halts blogging at ScienceBlogs for 13 days as all of the other bloggers try to find out who did the technical support. The lack of blogging forces Dr. Isis to join Nature Network, but she is swiftly asked to leave after she complains about the footware used by Nature editors.

March: NASA publicises a press conference where it says it will announce an earth-shattering new discovery. Unfortunately Science decides to retract the paper the day before the embargo is lifted. Suspicians are raised when it is discovered that Ivan Oransky is one of the authors.

April: A paper supporting Intelligent Design in published in the IEEE Annals of the History of Computing. This is immediately heralded as a huge breakthrough by the ID community, much to the a- and be-musement of everybody else.

May: Nature publishes paper in which it is shown that May is in fact the cruelest month. This is taken down in an epic 3055 word post by a pseudonymous author. This post is re-tweeted 334 times before anyone actually understands what it's saying.

June: MarkCC publishes a post demonstrating that P ≠ NP, unless N=1.

July: ScienceBlogs loses several more bloggers after the latest blog, Evolution News and Views, is put up without any prior announcement. After a bit of a kerfuffle, PZ Myers announces that the management at ScienceBlogs has created a new committee of bloggers to discuss their concerns. At the same time, Adam Bly starts a blog on ScienceBlogs.

August: History is made when a PhD thesis is live-blogged both by the examiner and examinee. This is followed up a week later when ash clouds prevent air travel in northern Europe, a thesis on vulcanology is defended wholly on twitter. This simultaneously creates the record for the largest number of twitter followers lost in a single hour.

September: ScienceOnline London is spiced up by an attempt to reignite the Battle of the Science Blogging Networks. This is narrowly averted when the person claiming to be DrugMonkey is revealed to be David Mabus .

In other news, Adam Bly realises he already had a blog on ScienceBlogs.

October: DrugMonkey is outed as Dennis Markuze.

November: In a move expected by everybody but Adam Bly, ScienceBlogs changes its domain name to

December: Despite 2012 being the end according to the Mayan calender, the world doesn't end. But on the stroke of midnight, amongst all of the fireworks, everybody called Maya mysteriously drops dead.

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