When I did my first degree (Biochemistry, University of Wales), we had one course devoted entirely to calculations. It was one of those courses that, if you did it well, could really make a difference to your final degree. The exam paper was open-ended, i.e., no fixed time limit, unlike most exams, which were limited to three hours. So, if you were really good at understanding the principles behind concentrations, amounts, dilutions etc., you could get a really good exam mark. On the other hand, it was possible to get a really lousy mark.
Luckily, I was pretty good at calculations, way back then and, though I*m a bit rusty due to not using this skill, can still do it when needed.
What is this all leading to? Well, I occasionally get into discussion with customers who get their calculations very very wrong, particularly when ordering oligonucleotides and planning how much they need for e.g. PCR. Usually, the problem is over-dilution. But explaining to someone that their maths was wrong when they just placed an order for 400 pre-diluted oligonucleotides, is a sensitive subject…
(If you are a fan of James Randi, you might know about his riff on the two statements never said by Ph.D.s. If not, see the video below.)
Article here: Easy Resuspension and Dilution of Oligos