What to get for the scientist in your life — whether that's you, a colleague, or a budding investigator — this season?
A number of science books come out each year, and the New Scientist rounds up a list of interesting ones. Curious why so many people are fascinated by yeti? Check out Daniel Loxton and Donald R. Prothero's Abominable Science! Origins of the Yeti, Nessie, and other famous cryptids, it says. Other books it recommends include one that delves into the mathematics hidden in the TV show The Simpsons and another that examines orders of magnitude of size and speed.
For the basement or garage experimenter, Derek Lowe at In the Pipeline suggests two books from Theodore Gray: Theo Gray's Mad Science and Mad Science 2. "Both of these are subtitle[d] 'Experiments that you can do at home — but probably shouldn't,' and I'd say that's pretty accurate," Lowe writes. "Many of these use equipment and materials that most people probably won't have sitting around, and some of the experiments are on the hazardous side (which, I should mention, is something that's fully noted in the book)." He adds that a lot can be gleaned just from the pictures of Gray performing the work.
On more of a kit side, Think Geek has a K'Nex DNA Replication & Transcription set that kids of all ages — well, it suggests for those over the age of 10 — can use to visualize and play around with the structure of DNA.
For the scientist-chef, Think Geek has a molecular cuisine kit complete with pipettes, syringes and food additives like xanthan gum and agar as well as recipes to play around with. There's a related kit for the scientist-bartender.
Etsy seller MolecularMuse has sets of basepair necklaces to show someone that she's the C to your G, while another seller, PennRockDesign, offers a DNA-shaped trophy made out of golf balls. "Golf: it's in my DNA," it says.