In his professional life, BJ Nicholls is an advertising designer; but in his spare time he, along with is wife Lori, is a volunteer fossil preparator at the Natural History Museum of Utah. What does that entail?
Most fossil discoveries require a tremendous amount of preparation work after a specimen is excavated. Fossils are typically brought back to preparation labs with little of the fossil exposed. We’ve been trained to remove the surrounding rock (called matrix) and to stabilize fossil bones that are often in very poor condition.
Eric Johnson is an engineering professional working as a patent facilitator for a multinational company. One of his jobs is to find information and “connect the dots” related to intellectual property of competitors, to develop research strategies for his company. He is also a multiple occurrence Testicular Cancer survivor who used the medical literature to research his condition and inform his treatment.
I do not believe I would be alive today if it were not for the information that can only be accessed by the layman (patient) in online sources.
Wayne Wells is a 68 year old male, a Vietnam veteran and small business owner living in Cameron NY, he is also an Atlatl (spear-thrower) enthusiast and pursues canoeing and X-countryskiing.
He was forced into retirement in 2006 due to diagnoses with a cryptic form of aggressive CLL (Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia) which the Department of Veteran Affairs has determined was caused by exposure from Agent Orange during his service in the Vietnam war.
Kelly Trout is a registered nurse by profession. She is also a leader of a small nonprofit organisation called the International WAGR Syndrome Association, and the parent of an adult with WAGR/11p Deletion syndrome. This is an extremely rare disorder — fewer than 500 cases have been identified worldwide. The primary features are Wilms tumor (a type of kidney cancer), Aniridia (absence of the iris), Genitourinary tract abnormalities, and intellectual disability.
Craig Dylke is known on the Internet as Traumador the Tyrannosaur (the name of his Dinosaur puppet). He’s a Canadian born primary teacher, currently residing in Hong Kong where he teaches English and Science at an international primary school. He integrates scientific topics and themes into most of his lessons, and in his off hours he is a very prolific palaeo-artist (someone who tries to recreate long extinct prehistoric life through art).
Peter Murray-Rust is a chemist specialising in informatics, recently retired but still active in research at Cambridge University, England. He aims at creating “chemically-artificial-intelligent machines”. These can understand simple chemical discussion (written and spoken) and extract the chemical information.
We spoke to him about his work.
Nick Barnes’s background is in the software industry, where he has twenty years’ experience as a researcher, programmer, consultant, and manager. He is also the co-founder (with David Jones) of the Climate Code Foundation, a non-profit organisation to promote the public understanding of climate science. The Foundation’s “elevator pitch” is:
Public trust in climate science has been undermined, and public support for policy changes eroded. We’re rebuilding that trust and support, by improving the transparency and communication of the science, and especially the software used in the science.
Douglas Carnall was a GP in inner-city London for twelve years, and was an editor at the British Medical Journal (BMJ) for seven years. As if that wasn’t enough to keep him busy, he also wrote and edited for The Guardian, LinuxUser and Reader’s Digest on subjects as varied as careers and cycling.
But he left all that behind to become a freelance translator. His speciality is translating technical material (medical and computer-related) from French into English.