Posts

July 23, 2014

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3:58 PM | Why Were Pigeons on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17?
Pets were on board Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 that crashed last week, but why did the manifest list include 4 live pigeons? Continue reading →
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3:45 PM | Record-Setting Bug Is Bigger Than Your Hand
A giant dobsonfly found in China has a wingspan of more than 8 inches and is now the largest-ever aquatic insect ever documented.
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3:22 PM | Fundamentalists try to set those godless Unitarian-Universalist heathens straight
In a total and absolute reversal of the golden rule, a group of fundamentalist Christians (they come in other flavors) invaded a UU church, well known to be a “Synagogue of Satan", during a service to "witness" to that congregation of godless heathens that they were all bound for Christian hell (hell comes in other flavors too).  This is sort of sadly amusing.  Amusing because TPP can readily imagine the confusion and bewilderment such an intrusion would make upon a UU […]
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2:49 PM | That's one strange Thai temple
TPP has been to Thailand several times, and in the process traveled the country from top to bottom and side to side. Somehow TPP missed (?) this temple, Wat Rong Khun, a contemporary religious study in white with some pretty strange features. It's one of those things that you simply have to say is "interesting".  Another "interesting" modern place is the aptly named Ancient City (now called Ancient Siam) outside of Bangkok, which is a huge (couple of hundred acres) outdoor museum […]
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2:44 PM | Computer Viruses… as art
Computer Virus Catalog, provides us with an illustrated history of the worst computer viruses in history. It also has an artistic interpretation of each virus, which look really cool! Below are some of my favorites!  
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2:33 PM | Il segreto della felicità nei geni dei danesi
Stando al World Happiness Report del 2013 delle Nazioni unite, la Danimarca è la nazione con i cittadini più felici del mondo. Sarà per il clima? Sembra difficile. Il merito, in effetti, potrebbe essere tutto della genetica. A sostenerlo sono i ricercatori del Centre for Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy della University of Warwick, in uno studio apparso tra i discussion paper del tedesco Institute for the Study of Labor (Iza). I risultati dimostrerebbero […]
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2:26 PM | "*heads explode*"
But WHY would 98% of scientists lie about global warming? Could it be science...doesn't even EXIST? *heads explode*— donni (@donni) July 23, 2014
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2:22 PM | Arachnophobia!
Yes Grandma, I'm almost positive Arachnophobia is not the fear of people from Iraq— Super Girl (@AphroditeAfter5) September 1, 2013
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2:16 PM | Rare Old Book Print
RT @ResObscura: Hand colored print of a bull from Conrad Gesner's "Historiae Animalium," 1551, at @rarebookschool pic.twitter.com/wze3DEc3l2— Thony Christie (@rmathematicus) July 23, 2014
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2:12 PM | "Mornin'"
Good morning from some #local #wildlife at the @MNZoo! #frog #riseandshine pic.twitter.com/Ch9GPoD8Wf— Minnesota Zoo (@mnzoo) July 23, 2014
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2:00 PM | The Art of Science: Lie Back and Think of Extinction
Humans are a successful species. But the growth of the human population has caused tremendous strain on many other species, causing thousands of extinctions through hunting and habitat loss. The Center for Biological Diversity came up with a novel idea to … Continue reading →
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2:00 PM | What does a molecular living fossil look like?
The idea of a living fossil is rather intuitive. We think that a kind of organism deserves that denomination if it has been living […] Read more The post What does a molecular living fossil look like? appeared first on Mapping Ignorance. Related posts:Living beings: systems all the way back to their chemical origins Grasshopper mouse mighty powers against evil bark scorpion: a molecular tale Bears and riddles
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1:59 PM | How to Lose a Finger, and Other Things I Learned from Darwin’s Library
It’s always a good idea to bring reading material on your trips, whether you plan to have some airport downtime or you’re spending five years floating on the ocean. When Charles Darwin departed in 1831 for his trip around the world on the HMS Beagle, he had a well-stocked library. But the collection wasn’t saved, and […]The post How to Lose a Finger, and Other Things I Learned from Darwin’s Library appeared first on Inkfish.
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1:38 PM | Video Tip of the Week: Nowomics, set up alert feeds for new data
Yeah, I know you know. There’s a lot of genomics and proteomics data coming out every day–some of it in the traditional publication route, but some of it isn’t–and it’s only getting harder and harder to wrangle the useful information to access the signal from the noise.  I can remember when merely looking through the […]

Acland A., T. Barrett, J. Beck, D. A. Benson, C. Bollin, E. Bolton, S. H. Bryant, K. Canese, D. M. Church & K. Clark & (2014). Database resources of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, Nucleic Acids Research, 42 (D1) D7-D17. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkt1146

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1:36 PM | Discovering the Complexity of the Human Proteome
I should preface this blog by stating that I am a nucleic acids gal. My years in the lab were spent with tubes of DNA and RNA. In fact my one and only tentative foray into the field of protein resulted in a Western Blot so ugly that those who witnessed it have been sworn […]
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12:30 PM | "Superior Smellers"
African elephants smell well...even when they don't smell good. (Little English major joke; elephants probably think we smell bad...and I don't mean poorly.)This really comes from serious genome research.
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12:16 PM | Zoo Sets Another Attendance Record
Riverbanks Zoo welcomed over a million visitors for the 5th year running."Riverbanks President and CEO Satch Krantz attributes the growth in part to the park's added attractions.""Earlier this year, the zoo announced it will begin a $36 million expansion called Destination Riverbanks. It will include a seal/sea lion exhibit, a new grizzly bear, and a children's garden, among other amenities."The zoo says its attendance is about half out-of-town visitors."
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12:07 PM | “I couldn’t believe how much things had moved on” – Nicola’s story
Find out how, with thanks from Cancer Research UK scientists, bowel cancer treatment has "phenomenally" improved from when Nicola's mother had the disease.
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12:07 PM | Give Jeans; Save Giraffes
A Topeka Zoo program.
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12:00 PM | Clonal growth in the absence of a mating morph
Haddadchi et al. study differences between a monomorphic population of Nymphoides montana and polymorphic populations.
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12:00 PM | Way down south: stumbling across Lepidopa websteri
“Hey Meera, check this out.”Not as powerful or concise as Archimedes’s “Eureka!”, but that was what I said at the moment of discovery – exactly two years ago today! – that led to my newest paper.I have been making regular trips to collect sand crabs on South Padre Island for a few years now (e.g., Murph and Faulkes 2013). A couple of years back, I had a summer intern, Meera (pictured), who was working on the parasites of the local species, Lepidopa […]
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12:00 PM | Let's Get Loud
Biology concepts – vocalizations, mechanical sounds, sonar, decibels, stridulation Today it seems that truth is more complex than ever. van Goethe was a German statesman and a very successful writer. He wrote novels, scientific treatises, lyric poems, as well as dramas. Born in 1749, one might say that his quote was true for his day; it was a simpler time. But think how simple our time will seem to those who live a hundred years from now – unless we’ve found our way back to […]

Van Belle S, Estrada A & Garber PA (2014). The function of loud calls in black howler monkeys (Alouatta pigra): Food, mate, or infant defense?, American journal of primatology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24865565

Sueur J, Mackie D & Windmill JF (2011). So small, so loud: extremely high sound pressure level from a pygmy aquatic insect (Corixidae, Micronectinae)., PloS one, 6 (6) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21698252

McDonald, M., Hildebrand, J. & Mesnick, S. (2009). Worldwide decline in tonal frequencies of blue whale songs, Endangered Species Research, 9 13-21. DOI: 10.3354/esr00217

Anker A, Ahyong ST, Noël PY & Palmer AR (2006). Morphological phylogeny of alpheid shrimps: parallel preadaptation and the origin of a key morphological innovation, the snapping claw., Evolution; international journal of organic evolution, 60 (12) 2507-28. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17263113

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11:53 AM | United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) has 10 major flaws
Originally posted on nuclear-news:Fukushima: Bad and Getting Worse - Global Physicians Issue Scathing Critique of UN Report on Fukushima  CounterPunch, by JOHN LaFORGE, 20 July 14 Physicians find ten grave failures in UN report The majority of the IPPNW’s report details 10 major errors, flaws or discrepancies in the UNSCEAR paper and explains study’s omissions, underestimates,…
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11:49 AM | Anche gli aerei seguono l'evoluzione
I costruttori e i designer di aeroplani di tutto il mondo sono avvisati: niente code enormi, tripla fusoliera o altre stranezze. Gli aerei di linea del futuro dovranno mantenere, sostanzialmente, il design attuale. A sostenerlo è Adrian Bejan, che in uno studio pubblicato sul Journal of Applied Physics analizza come l'industria aeronautica abbia ormai trovato una forma “vincente” che, seppur con qualche modifica, dovrebbe continuare a dettare il design del futuro. Bejan, […]
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10:34 AM | Raising the Shields!
  Turtles are strange organisms, and their development is wonderfully idiosyncratic. What other vertebrate alters its bone development to make an ossified mobile home? The turtle has perplexed biologists for many reasons. Where did turtles come from and to whom are they related? How did this different body plan arise developmentally and evolutionarily? The pieces […]
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9:00 AM | On the mythology of natural selection: Part VII. Phenogenetic drift
We are trying in this series of posts (see this week and last, beginning with Part I here) to enumerate a few ways in which organized traits can arise without the usual canonical view of natural selection as the complete, force-like causal process.  We do this to temper what we see as an often unquestioning belief in natural selection.  We do this because such a belief leads to what we think is extreme, and unwarranted, genomic determinism and belief in inborn inherency that leads […]
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7:08 AM | Come verrà smantellata la Costa Concordia
Finite le operazioni di rigalleggiamento, il relitto della Costa Concordia è (finalmente) pronto a ripartire. Destinazione: il porto di Genova Voltri (no Piombino o la Turchia come si era vociferato prima della designazione ufficiale) dove dovrebbe arrivare domenica prossima. Modalità di trasferimento: rimorchio (con due rimorchiatori a prua e due ausiliari a poppa). Velocità media: due nodi. Spazio da percorrere: circa 200 miglia nautiche […]
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7:00 AM | The Forgotten Creator Of Crime Scene Forensic Science
In the late 19th century, Alexandre Lacassagne was rewriting the way law enforcement looked at crimes and crime scenes. He ushered in a new era of weapon identification and analytical sciences and should be known as the father of modern forensics, but his name has largely been swallowed by unforgiving, cramped history books. A real-life Sherlock Holmes, Lacassagne constructed the first forensics lab and taught countless students how to recreate a crime from the evidence left behind. The post […]
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6:55 AM | I 128 geni legati alla schizofrenia
La più grande ricerca sulle basi genetiche di un disturbo psichiatrico, con la tecnica del genome-wide association study, o Gwas, ha portato di recente all’identificazione di 128 varianti geniche coinvolte nella schizofrenia. Si tratta di variazioni localizzate in 108 specifiche posizioni dei cromosomi dei pazienti, 83 delle quali non erano mai state associate prima alla malattia. Lo studio, pubblicato su Nature, è stato condotto dallo Schizophrenia Working Group dello […]
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6:00 AM | PHOTO DU BoB-181
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