Hi, everyone! I’m excited (and surprised, to be honest) to join the freethoughtblogs community. I’ve been blogging for about ten months over at fierceroller.com, a platform that I initially set up to serve the (pretty small) Volvox community. Volvox, in case you haven’t encountered it before, is a multicellular green alga, just visible to the naked eye, that is an important model system for understanding the evolution of multicellularity. Volvox is Latin for ‘fierce roller,’ a name bestowed by Linnaeus, who was impressed by their ability to move around without limbs.
I studied Volvox in grad school, went to Canada for a while to study other things, and returned to the fold with a NASA Astrobiology Institute postdoctoral fellowship in Missoula, Montana. Now I’m a Research Assistant Professor in the Division of Biological Sciences at the University of Montana. My current research focuses on questions related to the evolution of multicellularity using the volvocine green algae (Volvox and its relatives) as a model system. My academic website is here (it’s out of date; I’m working on it), and you can also find me on Google Scholar and ResearchGate.
Fierce Roller is evolving, but content is likely to include news and historical papers about Volvox and related algae, evolutionary biology (especially the evolution of multicellularity), philosophy of science (I have particular interests in biological individuality and multilevel selection), tearing down the arguments (when they rise to that level) of intelligent design creationists (creationists hates them some Volvox), and other stuff. I will try to migrate my older content to this platform, but in the mean time you can read it at fierceroller.com.