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Posts

April 19, 2014

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10:00 PM | Surge seen in number of U.S. wildfires
The number and size of wildfires in the western United States has steadily risen over the last three decades.
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8:25 PM | Brains Anti-Distraction System Found
So once my Grandmother… oh wait sorry, I was distracted while typing. As it turns out I’m not the only one. But there is hope, two Psychologists at Simon Fraser University […]

Gaspar J.M. & McDonald J.J. (2014). Suppression of Salient Objects Prevents Distraction in Visual Search, Journal of Neuroscience, 34 (16) 5658-5666. DOI:

Citation
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6:30 PM | Gravitational lensing lets researchers size up a white dwarf
Similar systems are forerunners to supernovae.
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6:20 PM | “Starting a Family”: Misleading and Damaging
Categories: FeminismIt’s not uncommon for a young couple to mention that they’re looking to “start a family” or for someone who is looking for a spouse to say that part of what they want is to be able to “have a family”. We all know what people mean when they say this: they mean that they want to have kids. As someone who has no interest whatsoever in having children, this phrase implies many things that seem unhelpful and backwards to me. First, it limits […]
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5:51 PM | Archaeologists discover pens and a book in ancient Egyptian writer’s tomb
A team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered the tomb of an ancient writer in southern Egypt, with a book, pens, and a bronze inkwell discovered at the site. Descrier - news and culture magazine
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5:18 PM | MakerBot Mystery Build: Sorting It Out
No summary available for this post.
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5:13 PM | Errorgance
I’ve begun reading The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive) by Brandon Sanderson. It is an epic fantasy novel and very, very good. I highly recommend it if you like epic fantasy.[1] One of the characters is studying to be a scholar and she uses a word that I must add to my own lexicon. Errorgance. […]
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5:00 PM | When the internet dies, meet the meshnet that survives
If a crisis throws everyone offline, getting reconnected can be tougher than it looks, finds Hal Hodson
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4:36 PM | Sharks, Rays, and (Finally) a Break in the Weather
The rough seas finally calm and the weather improves for the Pristine Seas team in Mozambique, and they move north into more tropical waters and the exciting marine life that dwell there.
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3:00 PM | Shakespeare: The godfather of modern medicine
Epilepsy, psychiatric breakdown, sleep disorders – for all the crudity of 16th-century healthcare, Shakespeare's observations still inspire doctors today (full text available to subscribers)
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2:45 PM | Gallery: The cost of coal
A few images documenting the world's reliance on a very dirty energy source.
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2:11 PM | Weekend reads: How to rescue science, what “censorship” really means, worst paper of the year?
Another very busy week at Retraction Watch. There were a lot of gems elsewhere. Here’s a sampling: Biomedical research in the U.S. must be rescued, write four heavy hitters in PNAS. It’s “time to confront the dangers at hand and rethink some fundamental features of the US biomedical research ecosystem.” “If you’re yelled at, boycotted, […]
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2:09 PM | Counterpuncher
Perry Anderson on Alexander Cockburn, in New Left Review (image from Wikimedia Commons): No other person I have ever known was so deeply and productively marked by family background. The relationship of sons to fathers is rarely without conflict; and...
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2:01 PM | Alive in the Sunshine: On Environmentalism and Basic Income
Alyssa Battistoni in Jacobin (Illustration by Edward Carvalho-Monaghan): [I]nternational disparities have, of course, long presented a challenge to those concerned with both domestic and global justice: how to acknowledge that America’s poor are wealthier than most of the world without...
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2:00 PM | Science Caturday: Happy Easter
Image via quickmeme.comFiled under: Science Caturday Tagged: chemistry cat easter, Easter lolcat, helium cat, science lolcat
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1:50 PM | Thomas Piketty and Millennial Marxists on the Scourge of Inequality
Timothy Shenk in The Nation (Photo: Emmanuelle Marchadour)): Chest-pounding about methodology and decrees on capitalism would be of little interest if they were not joined to substantive intellectual discoveries. Piketty’s contributions on this front come in three interlocking clusters: historical,...
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1:42 PM | THE SELECTED LETTERS OF ELIA KAZAN
Wendy Smith at The Washington Post: In his blisteringly candid but skewed 1988 autobiography, “Elia Kazan: A Life,” he claimed that he had been miserable during the years of his greatest success, “straining to be a nice guy so people...
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1:39 PM | The Concrete Abyss
Lisa Guenther in Aeon: Why does prolonged isolation typically corrode a prisoner’s ability to perceive the world and to sustain a meaningful connection with his own existence? The short answer to this question is that we are social beings who...
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1:38 PM | Adam Begley’s ‘Updike’
Orhan Pamuk at The New York Times: Here, in no particular order, are some of the memorable data from Updike’s universe that I learned from this delightfully rich book: He enjoyed poker and golf. At Harvard, he was classmates with...
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1:35 PM | The battle to build Shakespeare’s Globe
Chris Laoutaris at The Financial Times: This week marks the 450th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s birth. Yet the way we remember history’s most renowned playwright might have been very different had it not been for a formidable foe. In November...
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1:26 PM | The tomatoic under-arm odour of J.C.M. Stewart
No summary available for this post.
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1:19 PM | Gabriel Garcia Marquez: The supreme storyteller, he changed his country’s reality
Boyd Tonkin in The Independent: From the era of “La Violencia” in the late 1940s, Colombia has weathered more than its fair share of hideous bloodshed, factional strife and chronic instability. But there, on the other side of the balance,...
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1:08 PM | Missing Links
Carl Zimmer in The New York Times: In the summer of 1981, a Swedish graduate student named Svante Paabo filled a laboratory at the University of Uppsala with the stench of rotting liver. Paabo was supposed to be studying viruses,...
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12:20 PM | Saturday Poem
We Join Together Spoke in a Wheel We join spokes together in a wheel, but it’s the vacant hub that makes it possible for the cart to move. We shape a pot to make a void to hold whatever we...
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11:30 AM | That’s No Moon… Well, Actually, Yeah It Is
So there’s a picture you don’t see every day. Clearly, Vader’s forces were not at all happy about the lunar eclipse.  I know, it really does look like the Moon was shooting out a laser at a passing ship, but that’s an illusion: in fact, that laser is hitting the Moon, and it was sent from Earth. While you and I were busy watching the total lunar eclipse on Monday, a bunch of astronomers were zapping it with high-powered lasers. They do this every now and again to […]
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9:04 AM | Les requins sont-ils attirés par le sang ?
Dans le quiz sur les poissons (d'avril ou pas), une majorité des participants a répondu "vrai" à la question 6: "Les requins sont attirés par une goutte de sang humain à des kilomètres". Or la réponse, ou plutôt ma réponse puisque … Lire la suite →
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8:00 AM | Letter Q: Quotation (on Science Fiction Romance Brigade: Both Sides Now) #IAN1 #atozchallenge
Q is for quotations, and that is what two of the regular blog hops I belong to are all about: quotations from one’s own work, published or not. Today’s quotation is a continuation of last week’s, also on Science Fiction Romance Brigade Presents, and is from my work in progress tentatively titled Both Sides Now. […]
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8:00 AM | The Last Word
April 14 – 18 Our boy, Abstruse Goose, becomes as one with his electronic devices.  Truer than he knows.  Well.  I don’t know what he knows.  Truer than you might think, anyway. Poor Jessa, age 35, thinking about losing her math abilities.  And yes, mathematicians do have the reputation of topping out young.  But Jessa, […]
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5:01 AM | It's Algorithmic Indulgence for the Masses (or the niche market)
Introducing the latest addition to the Synthetic Daisies blog: Popular Algorithmics. Popular Algorithmics (a takeoff on Popular Mechanics) is a collection of posts originally presented as a series on Tumbld Thoughts. Each entry is a take-off on an established algorithmic approach from the scientific literature. Of particular interest are lesser known algorithmic approaches from the standpoint of both theory and application.
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3:03 AM | De-Extinction: Bay Area Researcher Hopes to Bring Back the Passenger Pigeon
Researchers are working to revive the passenger pigeon, once the most abundant bird in the world, and the woolly mammoth, which they say could slow down the melting of Arctic permafrost. It may be possible, but is it right to turn back the clock?
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