Posts

November 28, 2014

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2:19 PM | Adorable Video: Curious Cat Playing with a Dolphin
Most of you have probable seen the occasional "cat plays with dog"  video. But a cat playing with a dolphin sounds highly unlikely, right? Try watching the video below without going "Awwwwww":According to the caption, the video was shot in the Theater of the Sea, a marine animal park in Islamorada, Florida in 1997. The bottlenose dolphins are Shiloh and Thunder and the cat is Arthur.Gimme a Smoochy!!!Some Other Strange Inter-Species Interactions You Shouldn't MissSeals Caught Raping […]
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2:05 PM | A Conundrum Haunts Climate Debate
This tweet caught my eye: Prof Joachim Schellnhuber, at @PIK_climate: “Stabilizing the climate and combating poverty is largely the same thing” #COP20Lima — Damian Carrington (@dpcarrington) November 28, 2014 A greater elaboration on this statement by Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, can be read here. It starts out this […]The post A Conundrum Haunts Climate Debate appeared first on Collide-a-Scape.
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2:00 PM | Was that winter warm? Depends on if you accept climate change
If you don't, you'll probably think it's nothing out of the ordinary.
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1:00 PM | Nitrogen fixation in aquatic carnivorous plants
Sirová et al. assess the importance of fixed N in the nutrition of rootless, aquatic, carnivorous Utricularia species (bladderworts).
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1:00 PM | Stuff online, “a note so high nobody could reach it” edition
“Nothing on Earth sounds less like freedom to me.” A grand jury decided not to indict Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson for killing an unarmed black teenager. Grand juries hardly ever decide not to indict, and Wilson’s testimony before … Continue reading →
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1:00 PM | Thanksgiving Special: Uncovering the link between sleep and food
If you ate a big Thanksgiving dinner yesterday, you probably felt drowsy and sluggish afterward, a phenomenon often referred to as a “food coma”. The belief that it’s caused by the tryptophan in turkey is a long busted myth, and in fact it can happen after any carb-heavy meal. The reasons for this post-food slump […]

Yurgel M.E., Justin DiAngelo & Alex C. Keene (2014). Genetic dissection of sleep–metabolism interactions in the fruit fly, Journal of Comparative Physiology A, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00359-014-0936-9

Shang Y., Christopher G. Vecsey, Fang Guo, Michael Rosbash & Leslie C. Griffith (2013). Short Neuropeptide F Is a Sleep-Promoting Inhibitory Modulator, Neuron, 80 (1) 171-183. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuron.2013.07.029

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12:23 PM | Python in Astronomy: A week of cheese, coding, bicycles and learning
TODAY (28 Nov) is the last day to apply for the Python in Astronomy workshop at the Lorentz Center in Leiden, the Netherlands. I was very happy when Tom Robitaille (MPIA) asked me to join him on the organising committee for this workshop. I’ve become a bit of a Python enthusiast in recent years, my coding skills […]
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12:20 PM | Agri-Drinks next week Dec 3rd in London: Join us
A monthly meet-up to bring together all those involved in communications, media and PR focused on food security, nutritional and agricultural issues. Join the facebook group to stay in the loop on upcoming events! Facebook group: http://on.fb.me/1w2upQ3 Filed under: Agriculture Tagged: events
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11:10 AM | Metricophobia among academics
Most academics loathe metrics. I’ve seldom attracted so much criticism as for my suggestion that a citation-based metric might be used to allocate funding to university departments. This suggestion was recycled this week in the Times Higher Education, after a group of researchers published predictions of REF2014 results based on departmental H-indices for four subjects. Twitter was appalled. Philip Moriarty, in a much-retweeted plea said: “Ugh. *Please* stop giving credence to […]
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11:08 AM | The best shakes come equipped with thresher sharks. #fact
The best shakes come equipped with thresher sharks. #fact
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10:56 AM | Surviving Black Friday: a scientific guide | Dean Burnett
Today is Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year for many. But the mad rush for bargains can be hazardous to your health, so here is some scientific advice for staying safeBlack Friday UK: live blogTraditionally an American occasion, Black Friday is fast spreading overseas, and is seemingly already well entrenched here in the UK. If you’ve been living in a small cave in the middle of the wilderness with only a limited 3G signal for the past few years, you may not know what […]
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9:42 AM | A shocking result - people are more willing to hurt themselves than others for profit
You wait in a cubicle, electrodes strapped to your body. In a room nearby, a stranger is confronted with a series of decisions. They can choose a smaller cash reward and avoid an electric shock, or a larger sum that comes together with an unpleasant zap. The twist is that in half of the trials, the stranger knows the associated shock punishment is for them, but in the others they know it’s you who will suffer. You glance nervously at the electrodes.It's a tough spot. Surely you will […]
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9:00 AM | The Most Important Thing to Happen in the History of the World Was … Panama?
Last weekend, as a part of a much-needed vacation to Colombia, my wife and I took a long layover in Panama City. Also known as “home to that canal that the entire world needs to do business,” Panama City is a lovely town. Lately, people have taken to calling it the Dubai of Latin America because […]
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8:44 AM | Die OPEC hat den längeren Atem – Warum der niedrige Ölpreis den Saudis zuletzt schadet
Die Entscheidung, der OPEC, die maximale Fördermenge von 30 Millionen Barrels pro Tag vorerst unverändert zu lassen, ist kein Zeichen der Schwäche des Ölkartells. Es ist ein Test des längeren Atems und ein Versuch, konkurrierende Ölproduzenten trocken zu legen. Der Marktpreis pro Barrel liegt aktuell bei etwa 70 Dollar, die Kosten um rentabel zu fördern…
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8:31 AM | Interview : Dr Sara Goodacre on Spiders
NSB was hugely chuffed to have the opportunity recently to interview Dr Sara Goodacre about Spiders and the UoN Spider lab. Below is a summary of the best bits of the talk, together with some added linkage. Enjoy!....Q: How did you get interested in Biology.Sara commented that she had looked back at her University application forms and found that she had simply stated "I've always been interested in Biology", adding that "it was just this underlying fascination with the world around me and I […]
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8:29 AM | Il dna sopravvive nello Spazio
Campioni di dna sintetico sono sopravvissuti a un viaggio nello Spazio con temperature che al rientro nell’atmosfera hanno superato i mille gradi
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8:01 AM | A Mildly Promising View of Mt. Shasta...It Has Snow!
Shasta from the vicinity of Dunsmuir from the southA short note from the highway tonight. We were on a long road trip into central Oregon today and followed Interstate 5 through northern California. One of the real treats of following I-5 is the chance to see Mt. Shasta from many different directions.Mt. Shasta has to be one of the most dramatic volcanic sights in the world. Rising to an elevation of 14,179 feet (4,322 m), it is the second highest volcano […]
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8:00 AM | Sex education programmes focused on ‘protection’ and ‘prevention’ with little attention given to supporting people to develop healthy, positive sexual relationships
Knowledge about sexuality is a key factor in helping people develop healthy relationships, maintain their sexual health and avoid potentially abusive situations, but how much do sexuality education programmes for people with learning disabilities help fulfil these aims? In her debut blog, Sian Anderson looks at a review of literature which looks at the effectiveness of sex education programmes and educational materials developed for people with mild or moderate learning disabilities. The post […]
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7:34 AM | The Autism-Spectrum Quotient: overlap between Asperger syndrome and schizophrenia
The paper by Tove Lugnegård and colleagues [1], including mention of one Maria Unenge Hallerbäck who has appeared on this blog previously, is fodder for today's discussions and their finding that a: "significant overlap of AQ [Autism-Spectrum Quotient] scores across the two diagnostic groups clearly reduces the discriminating power of the AQ in the separation of schizophrenia from AS [Asperger syndrome]."They say you're judged by the strength of your enemies.As per […]

Lugnegård T, Hallerbäck MU & Gillberg C (2014). Asperger syndrome and schizophrenia: Overlap of self-reported autistic traits using the Autism-spectrum Quotient (AQ)., Nordic journal of psychiatry, 1-7. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25389915

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7:30 AM | Anti-inflammatory drugs for depression: new review points to benefits, but more research needed
Helge Hasselmann highlights a recent systematic review of anti-inflammatory drugs for depression, which concludes that NSAIDs, in particular celecoxib, decreases depressive symptoms without increased risk of adverse effects. However, the meta-analysis has a number of draw-backs, which make the study findings far from convincing. The post Anti-inflammatory drugs for depression: new review points to benefits, but more research needed appeared first on The Mental Elf.
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6:51 AM | How many posts do you want?
This is my 24th consecutive daily blog post, and there’s only a few more days in November, when I challenged myself to write a blog post every day. Some days have been quite a challenge, but overall it has been fun and I have enjoyed emptying my brain onto these pages. Quite a few of you have left comments, or sent me messages on Twitter (thank you). I haven’t done any statistics, but it feels as though a higher rate of posts from me is producing a higher rate of interaction from […]
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6:13 AM | Tristan Adventure 5: always have a Plan B, Dave
One of my favourite films, for a variety of reasons, is the Newfoundland production called “Rare Birds”, where Phonse, played by comedian Andy Jones, often quips “Always have a Plan B, Dave. Always have a Plan B”.  In field work, you also often need a Plan C, or D, or E, especially when working in […]
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4:59 AM | The Strange Remains The Same for 27 November 2014
Thanksgiving leftovers… Over 16,000 pages of Darwin’s research on evolution released online. Undermining the Hippocratic Oath: the Medical Innovation Bill : The Lancet Oncology. 21st century exorcisms: Examining the psychology of possession – JREF. The Bulletproof Diet: simplistic, invalid and unscientific – Telegraph. Science (and Quacks) vs. the Aging Process – NYTimes.com. Source: Doubtful News
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4:34 AM | Publication of the week, number 53, 28th November 2014
The Seeberger group have described a modular approach to continuous chemical processing allowing access to a variety of different structural classes. This, he demonstrates by the synthesis of APIs some of which went on to become “blockbuster” drugs. So by appropriate combination of the modules, 2 – 5, containing the required reagent(s) you should be able […]
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4:30 AM | New Nordic food is a niche
On the 10th anniversary of the concept “New Nordic food”, researchers from Aarhus University have investigated its social and financial influence on society.
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4:27 AM | Wooster’s Fossils of the Week: Large Miocene barnacles with bioimmurations from Maryland
These two beautiful barnacles are from the Calvert Formation (Middle Miocene) exposed near Parker Creek in Maryland. They are likely of the genus Chesaconcavus. Barnacles are most unlikely crustacean arthropods, cousins of shrimp, crabs and lobsters. Most, like these above, cement themselves head-downwards on a hard substrate like a rock or shell (or boat hull), […]
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4:17 AM | Children can wait – for higher income
The probability of having children increases significantly once people have started their professional careers.
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4:10 AM | Quantitative Urine Drug Testing and Buprenorphine: Tainted Motives?
First Posted 11/23/2013 As fear of buprenorphine diversion sweeps the nation, some states have passed legislation adding more rules for practices that treat addiction using buprenorphine.    Never mind that buprenorphine is linked to about 400 deaths over ten years, one tenth of the number of deaths from acetaminophen during that same time, and 0.1% of […]
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4:00 AM | L’allineamento dei quasar lungo la rete cosmica
Una serie di osservazioni realizzate con il Very Large Telescope (VLT) dell’ESO hanno permesso di rivelare che gli assi di rotazione dei buchi neri supermassicci di un insieme di quasar sono paralleli gli uni agli altri su distanze che raggiungono i miliardi di anni luce. Inoltre, gli astronomi hanno trovato che l’asse di rotazione tende … Continue reading L’allineamento dei quasar lungo la rete cosmica →
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3:37 AM | The Endless Bicker
More than 20 years after their last collaborative output, and to the surprise of many, the Cambridge Chemists Collective (CCC) has released a new monograph on Quantiplutonic Neurotectonics. Missing as a coauthor, to the surprise of few, is troubled Nanospectroscopist Robert Walters, who left the Collective in 1985 after a dispute about sharing credit for a now outdated method for quantifying sphingopinoids in Tremendulous exudates. Also missing is penduloeconomist Mitchell Flight, who died in […]
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