Sex and the chemist


What is it that chemists really have on the brain? To answer the question, try clicking on this link to a book review in the New York Times, and have a look at the molecular structure to see if anything leaps out at you.

So what did you see? If you’re anything like the chemist that wrote in to the New York Times to complain, you’ll have spotted that some of the carbon atoms appear to have formed five bonds. Fair enough. But did you notice that the molecule is actually spelling out the word ‘sex’?

Credit goes to the Newsmakers section of Science for telling this story of a chemist who was prepared to admit that he missed the point. I have to say, I think I’d have missed the point of the graphic too…


Andrew Mitchinson (Associate Editor, Nature)

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