Microbial photography. It’s a thing. Right now, there’s a good chance that you have a sophisticated digital camera in your pocket, in the shape of a smartphone. There’s also a high likelihood that it has a lens on both its front and back surfaces, enabling that extraordinary 21st-century technological breakthrough, the selfie. We’re not sure […]
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Bookstores and their bathrooms. One of the most delightful aspects of writing these weekly newsletters is the tips we receive from readers and other members of the uBiome team. Sometimes they take us to the most unexpected places, but today’s tip must surely rank at the very top of unexpected place-ness. One of our team […]
Let’s hear it for everyone in bacterial businesses. On Monday, the United States will pay tribute to American workers by giving many the day off. Labor Day is always the first Monday in September, and this year it falls on September 3rd. Just as you might expect, we at uBiome naturally take our hats off […]
Bacterial life on the 3rd rock from the sun. Imagine for a moment that the sun was the size of a yoga ball. The moon would then be roughly the same diameter as the tiny sphere on the end of a sewing pin. In spite of this 400:1 size differential, for a few minutes yesterday, […]
It’s National Breastfeeding Month. Party like it’s, uh, August. Just as it has been every year since 2011, August is National Breastfeeding Month, brought into being (we were going to say “conceived,” but obviously thought better of it) through a proclamation from the United States Breastfeeding Committee. You’re right, there really is a committee for […]
The bacterium that loves boiling water. 50 years ago, the summer of love was segueing into the fall. The Beatles were on their way to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 with “All You Need Is Love.” And a microbiologist named Thomas Brock was spending a lot of time in Yellowstone National Park, conducting […]
Are you flushing away a fortune? It’s undeniably true that average weekly grocery bills vary widely from person to person, family to family. But after their journey through your gastrointestinal system (sorry for that image, but there’s worse to come), there’s simply no getting away from the place in which a substantial proportion of your […]
We’re telling you now, it’s a lot. Please permit us the smallest amount of navel-gazing this week as we write this, our 100th, weekly newsletter. Yup, it was exactly 100 editions ago that we started pounding the keys to bring you what turned out to be a long and winding road through the world of […]
And why it’s bad news for potatoes, but no problem for you. Just as it has been for years, the most common last name in the US is Smith. But although over 2.3 million Americans share it, apparently only 215 also have the first name Erwin. And we’re fairly sure that few, if any, of […]
And how a less diverse diet can lead to a less diverse microbiome. Maybe it was just us, but perhaps you also took an interest in code-breaking as a kid? If so, you may recall that a useful tool in cracking ciphers is a technique called frequency analysis. When the encoding method is a simple […]
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