It’s always fun to find other internet-savvy, geeky, scientists out there in the blogosphere. Today’s spotlight is on one of those who has been forging new ground on the internet for ten years. He’s an invertebrate neuroethologist, his name is Zen, and his blog is called NeuroDojo.

About Zen

Zen is a professor at The University of Texas-Pan American. He does research using crayfish and is interested in studying the evolution of behaviors and is particularly interested in how new behaviors are formed. He teaches some classes that I can relate to, for instance, General Biology. He also teaches scientific writing, neurobiology, and evolutionary theory. In terms of academia, Zen is interested in things near and dear to my heart such as how to put together good scientific posters and powerpoint presentations. In fact, he has another whole blog devoted to breaking down how to put together the perfect posters!

Zen is also pretty geeky. He references science fiction and comics pretty regularly. I’m particularly fond of his article about becoming Batman in academia. He did some lettering for an independent comic called Time City in1992. He’s also interested in the possibility of extraterrestrial intelligence and the search for aliens.

What? Dr. Zen is also Iron Man!

Why You’ll Enjoy It

Zen’s been writing for a long time, and if there’s one thing I like about his blog it’s that he doesn’t pull any punches. He says what he means to say, even if it seems like something out of left field or something that is never uttered in the halls of academia. He’s got a good way of breaking down science for folks who aren’t necessary neurobiologists, or any kind of biologist. He’s always got great pictures, and you can expect some shelled critter doing something funny every week in the Tuesday Crustie. He’s a bit of an agitator and likes to criticize and critque, and he even posts links to his comments on other blogs so that you can follow his thought provoking ways, but he’s definitely not a troll. If you have any interest in academics, neurology, or just want a good, fun, easy-to-read science guy that will probably mention at least one of your favorite geeky things, Zen is your man.

Dr. Zen also wears kilts and raps. Oh baby.

Articles to Check Out

Flipping the Funnel – A Theory About Those Who Thrive in Social Media

Student Mentoring Venn Diagram

47 – It’s 42, corrected for inflation and features Spock

Why I Published a Paper on My Blog Instead of In a Journal

Follow Zen on twitter and add his blog to your feeds (in whatever new reader you are playing with. I’m giving Netvibes a go, and I enjoy it). Finally: Dr. Zen and Scicurious on Blogging for the Long Haul at the Science Online conference.

Watch live streaming video from scienceonline at

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