Public lectures on science and polymathy

Tickets are now on sale for the Royal Institution evening public lecture series on polymathy and science, chaired by Oliver Morton, Chief News and Features Editor of Nature. The programme is run by Sara Abdulla, Editor of Nature Networks and publisher of Macmillan Science books. All are welcome.
Two lectures on great polymaths in March and April will be followed by a debate in May about whether interdisciplinarity is alive, dead, possible, desirable, vice or virtue.

March 21: Andrew Robinson on Thomas Young: ‘The last man who knew everything’
April 18: John Whitfield on D’ Arcy Wentworth Thompson: ‘The last man who read everything’
May 16: Panel debate: What happened to the polymaths

Venue: The Royal College of Surgeons of England, 35–43 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PE, UK.
Tickets: ; (+44) 0 20 7409 2992
Details: 7-8.30 p.m. Price £8 (£5 for Ri Members, RCS Fellows/Members and concessions). You can book for all three of the Polymaths Series events at the special price of £20 (£12 Ri Members, RCS Fellows/Members and concessions).

This post is also on Nautilus, the Nature Publishing Group blog for authors.

Snap’s 100 recommended sites

The people at,  who produce the code (free) that you can paste into your site to get those little preview windows over the links, have sent subscribers an email calling for nominations for their next list of 100 recommended sites.  Here are the details so you can nominate yourself or any other site/blog you visit regularly and think is worth recommending.

Dear Website Owner,

Last month, we released a list of 100 great websites that use Snap Preview Anywhere. We got a lot of great email about it (thank you!) and some great suggestions on how to improve it, usually along the lines of "Hey, here’s how you can improve your next list of 100–include my site". And that got us thinking…

We have over 650,000 sites using Snap Preview Anywhere.  We have fewer than 50 employees, all of whom are working their tails off to make Snap Preview Anywhere better. Would it be better to have them each check out 13,000 sites and then get into arguments about which sites should or shouldn’t be included or to just keep working hard at their jobs? So, in the interest of keeping our people busy with their day jobs, we’re opening it up to you. If you’d like your site to be included in our next SPA 100 list, send an email to; Do not use the Comments box on!

Tell us:

  • the name of your site
  • your URL
  • your category
  • your primary language
  • a brief, English description of why you should be included.  (If your English is as bad as our Portuguese/Bulgarian/Korean, etc., don’t worry, it won’t be held against you and it will be edited for clarity.)
  • Entries must be received by February 8, 2007.

    By the way, please do not attempt to bribe the judges. We take this very seriously and are already overpaid at our jobs!

    Yours, etc.

    Also from Snap, Erik Wingren of the  "User Experience Research" department, has launched a series of blog posts/discussions about Snap Preview Anywhere. Snap asks people to visit the discussions to share your experiences (good, bad, and ugly), to help them "evolve Snap Preview Anywhere into the best, most useful website extension anywhere." When they work, those little windows of where you will get to if you click on a link are quite useful, I guess. I haven’t seen many blogs myself that use the application apart from Petrona, so I can’t tell if the service is catching on —- though the organisation itself says it is. I do know that it is extremely easy to activate on your blog, however, so if you want to try it, just go to the Snap website. (If you are on TypePad, there is an automatic way to include the Snap code, via the Typepad widget gallery.)