You Like?

MicrobiologyBytes Every day several thousand people read content from Microbiologybytes, either via the website, RSS subscriptions, Friendfeed or Facebook. And that’s great – I’m really pleased people find it so useful. I’d like to make it even better, but I can’t do that without your help. I’d like you to tell me what you find most useful about MicrobiologyBytes, and how it can be improved. I’m particularly interested in:

  • Who are you and what’s your background – student, teacher or interested passer by?
  • How long have you been reading MicrobiologyBytes?
  • How often do you read MicrobiologyBytes?
  • Where do you read MicrobiologyBytes – website, RSS, Facebook?
  • What do you like best about MicrobiologyBytes?
  • How could I make MicrobiologyBytes better for you?

If you like to let others know who you are and what you think of this site, please leave a comment below, and if you want to leave your name. I’ll get back to you.

Thanks :-)

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20 Responses to You Like?

  1. Sushan Dhakal says:

    It’s been…..i don’t know…couple maybe more months that i so called “liked” Microbiology Bytes on Facebook and it’s been good! And since it’s Facebook, i get updated as soon as you guys update your page. Ah..about what’s best…i’m not sos sure…I think, the fact that i get updated as i’m “wasting” my time on facebook is something i like about it and to add to’s the subject that i’m academically studying too. I don’t know about how better it can be…because i believe that i haven’t yet made the full use of it yet….when i do…and need more..i’ll let know.
    Thank you

    • AJCann says:

      Thanks Sushan, thanks for commenting. It’s good to know you like this site and prefer to use the Facebook channel ( I know some people prefer to keep Facebook purely for recreation, but quite a few of my students are now happy to use it for courses too, so I expect it will continue to get more popular.

  2. Melina Mazzoleni says:

    Hello, I´m Melina Mazzoleni, English teacher and translator from Argentina. I teach technical English (medical) at a very well-known hospital at Buenos Aires. Even though it´s not my field, I usually read mycrobiologybytes to prepare lessons and to include up-to-date-material. Thanks for the postings, I find them interesting and useful.

  3. Heather says:

    Umm…… well I used to view Microbiology Bytes on and off for a while ( basically when I remembered to check to see if you had posted anything new) but having it on facebook is really good! So now I read ( and often comment) on everything you put up.
    What would I like to see change….. hmmm…. not much really to be honest! I guess just from my personal pov I would like to hear more blogs from your yourself, as well as the news articles and papers you link up. More from the man behind the beard and his views if that makes sense? I know you do post your opinion on papers when appropriate.
    But essentially I don’t think anything needs any real improvement at all :-)
    The other bonus is what I have learnt from other people who post comments on your facebook too.

    On an aside note, I do wish lecturers would be more amenable to using facebook or related media more, your revision questions on youtube were a brilliant idea I think!
    Given that most students spend most of their procrastinating time on facebook, it would prove to be a useful revision tool.

  4. Ki Hng says:


    I’ve been reading microbiology bytes for maybe.. a year or two? I’m not sure.. and I don’t read everything.. when I’m back logged on my RSS feeds I often use the ‘mark all as read’ button. I discovered the site kinda after it was no longer relevant to me actually. I did a BSc microbiology from 2004-07 at Leeds, and I had a copy of your virology book. I guess I now class as ‘interested passer by’, as i am no longer student, teacher or academic.

    I read via RSS, I read it via rss feed every couple of days. what attracted me initially to microbiology bytes were the bits of info about current research in microbiology and virology. That has diverted somehow now.. and I find your rants and other comments on teaching and academia interesting, although I do still read the other stuff.

    I enjoy the site, and I would keep reading. Thank you for all the useful knowledge you have shared!

    • AJCann says:

      That’s good advice. many people stop using RSS because they feel they can’t keep up. You don’t have to read everything you’re subscribed to – there’s not going to be an exam at the end (although reading a range of RSS feeds might well help you score a few more marks in your next exam).

  5. Dom says:

    Who are you and what’s your background – student, teacher or interested passer by?
    Med student
    How long have you been reading MicrobiologyBytes?
    About a year
    How often do you read MicrobiologyBytes?
    Every time there’s a new article
    Where do you read MicrobiologyBytes – website, RSS, Facebook?
    What do you like best about MicrobiologyBytes?
    Updates on new research
    How could I make MicrobiologyBytes better for you?
    Cover more research, but it’s great as it is, thank you

    • AJCann says:

      Thanks Dom. I try and ensure Microbiologybytes has a wide a focus as possible, including environmental microbiology and biotechnology, but inevitably because of the volume of research published, there tends to be more medical microbiology than anything else. I guess that suits you :-)

  6. Michael says:

    I’m a physician researcher working on vaccines (mainly influenza). My background is in pediatrics and epidemiology and I work in Australia.
    I’ve been reading posts from this site for about 6 months to a year (can’t remember exactly).
    I follow using RSS feeds and at least skim each post and then read those related to my subject area of interest.
    I think it’s great – particularly enjoy those related to virology and immunology.
    Another favorite site is Vincent Rancinello’s virology blog.

  7. anonymous says:

    hello from an “interested passer by”, software developer from eastern europe with unrelated background (math and psychology), reading your blog (here or on wordpress) for 2+ years now. i used to read it as the new posts entered my RSS feed, but as we get busier every day and the feed subscriptions multiply, now i do it in bursts, once per week. for my disgrace (but understandable), lately i even delete entries with titles which do not appeal to me (such as the recent guillain-something syndrome) without parsing the content.
    what i like best: i don’t know.. accessibility, crystal clear explanations.. and it’s pretty good for me, proved by the fact that it survived in my feeds for so long, so i have nothing to propose “to make it better”

  8. Alex says:

    Alexander Davenport – I currently work as an RA in London in Cancer Immunology.
    I have been reading microbiology bytes on and off for several years (I cant remember how long it has been going on for but atleast since 2005/6 may even be 2004 when I started university)
    I read MB approx once every week but it depends on work load, sometimes more times a week sometimes less.
    I read the blogs on the website itself but I have my twitter account following it so that I know when a new post is up. I also have it linked in to my google reader account but I dont use this as much.
    Honestly I think MB is doing great and works well as it is. I wouldnt want to change it. Although I have migrated to cancer Immunology I still prefer viral immunology and defence against infectious diseases and so I like to keep up to date with such things. I intend to move back into the field either once I have a PhD or by obtaining one in the same field.

    What I also like about MB and in fact Dr Cann himself is that he is never afraid to use a new medium to reach as many people as possible. I really liked the idea of the podcasts and if I think about it, MB was the first blog I ever read. Keep it up and thank you!

    • AJCann says:

      Hi Alex, good to hear from you. It’s always nice when former students pop up and are doing well, so I’m pleased you’re still reading :-)

  9. Julie says:

    I’m so glad you asked. I’ve been meaning to tell you how useful your site is. I am a biology professor at a community college (2yr undergrad) in Texas. I have been using your podcasts and blogs in my medical microbiology class for 4 or 5 years now. I use the RSS feed option, file all of the entries, and go through them at the begining of semesters. I use our course website to make links to episodes I want students to view — either as enrichment of lecture material, or sometimes instead of lecture. Your old 2 or 3 part podcasts on fungi is essentially my lecture, so I let them listen to you for a change and we spend more time in lab that week.
    Because my class is a survey course for health science students, I mostly use the episodes that don’t go too deep into biochem and genetics. But for myself, the more specific ones are a painless way to keep current in areas outside my expertise.
    Thanks again, this is valuable resource!!

    • AJCann says:

      Thanks Julie, I’m very pleased it’s useful for you. Let me know if there’s any changes I could make which would make it better. Do your students refer to the original research papers I link to?

  10. Marina says:

    Hi, I actually just stumbled unto your website while researching Gram stains for my laboratory course in Pharmacy school. I was interested to see more on what this site had, and it turns out there’s a lot more to it! I am interested in the topics you discuss since I am currently taking an Infectious Disease course, so it’s making me realize how relevant the course is to the real world. Keep updating the public on new innovative research, it is really useful! Also, you should put your name on every page linking to specific topics (I noticed it wasn’t on the Gram stain page).
    Thank you!

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