Tuesday, July 5, 2022

BIG Exclusives

Vaccines – a historical perspective

Vaccines were created to elicit an immune response to a disease-producing pathogen. We typically know them as containing either pieces of – or a weakened or dead form of – the pathogen itself, but this has changed in recent years. The initial round of approved COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna represents a new class of vaccines, called mRNA vaccines. These vaccines contain no element of the original pathogen itself, only blueprints, which allows...

Polar bear population analysis presents balanced picture

We’ve all seen it – the stark image of a gaunt polar bear stranded on a slab of ice, drifting away from shore. Many wildlife advocates and government officials cited this particular photo as more evidence that human-driven climate change is pushing this species to the brink of extinction.   https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/20/climate/polar-bear-extinction.html  Is this an accurate depiction of the plight of the polar bear? Before we answer this question, let’s take a step back. The majority of polar...

Renewable energy – renewing hope or struggling to cope?

Like much of public debate today, discussions on renewable energy, especially as presented in the media, can be dominated by starkly polarized viewpoints. Depending on one’s political or personal views, a vista of towering wind turbines can be construed as a credit to human ingenuity and problem solving, harvesting nature’s abundant energy for a marginal cost of near zero and using it to build a more sustainable future … or as a blight on...

Sources of contention: is citing a reputable journal article really enough to end the argument?

All research is not created equal. Just because a study is published in a journal, even a reputable one, does not mean it is reliable. In fact, there is research to show that the quality of the study and prestige of the journal have an inverse relationship. What should you look for in finding a reliable source? Trust and confidence in media is near an all-time low, with 44% in the United States, 52% in...

How to correctly and effectively read a journal article

You’re an independent thinker. You don’t just accept a shared post as fact, and in fact, you prefer to ‘do your own research’ and read journal articles for yourself, diving into the actual data. Even better, you just found an article from a scientific journal that proves your point! Or did you? Turns out not just anyone can interpret a journal article or research study properly. There are some things you need to know...

Cyber insurance: the coverage you don’t know you need until you really need it

By Dr. Thomas P. Keenan Years ago, American radio storyteller Garrison Keillor described Lake Wobegon, the fictional community in which “all the children are above average”. It appears the same rosy view of the world has taken hold of U.S. and Canadian business operators when it comes to evaluating their cybersecurity practices. According to a study conducted by Ovum Consulting and commissioned by FICO, “a story of overconfidence emerges.” IT managers were asked to rate their...