Posts

July 18, 2014

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10:00 PM | This Week In Numbers: A Surprising Comet, A Creepy Robot, And More
250,000,000 miles: how far away the Rosetta spacecraft is from Earth. However, Rosetta is just 8,000 miles from its target, a comet that is called 67P and is surprisingly shaped like a rubber ducky. 2,700,000: the number of Wikipedia articles written by this one bot. That's 8.5 percent of all the articles on Wikipedia. The bot mostly creates those short "stubs" you might have run into on the online encyclopedia. 2,000: approximate number of people who attended this year's Porcupine Freedom […]
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9:57 PM | Why Your Body Looks The Way It Does
Some of you may have noticed that I posted three videos this week to the OKTBS YouTube channel, and if you’re good at math, you realize that is exactly two more than I normally post in a week. That’s because this week’s videos were part of a special series all about how our bodies evolved to look the way that they do! You know, why you have a brain-filled head on top, a spine down the back, a belly full of guts, and some interesting differences (and similarities) between […]
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9:45 PM | Ever wondered how your body knows left from right? Why our...
Ever wondered how your body knows left from right? Why our bodies are asymmetrical on the inside, despite being so symmetrical on the outside?  And why on Earth does singer Donny Osmond, like 1 in 20,000 people, have mirror-image inverted organs? In this video, part 3 of my special series on how our bodies evolved to look the way that they do, find out the science of your asymmetry. Watch below:
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9:45 PM | US satellite may have located Ukraine missile launch
US officials seem to have pinpointed the missile launch that downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. If so, they are likely relying on satellite intelligence
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9:18 PM | Going on a Rock Cruise
Imagine two, 60-mile-thick slabs of rock running into each other. Which gives first and why? This is what happens when two oceanic plates go head to head, and one must buckle down, or subduct into a trench. In the western Pacific Ocean south of Japan, this is thought to have first occurred 52 million years…
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9:00 PM | The Week In Drones: Wedding Photographers, Prison Guards, And More
Cold Spring, New York. An aerial view of the town where NY Representative Sean Patrick Maloney used a drone to film his wedding. Joe Mabel, via Wikimedia Commons Here's a roundup of the week's top drone news, designed to capture the military, commercial, non-profit, and recreational applications of unmanned aircraft. Weddings, Investigated When New York Representative Sean Patrick Maloney got married in upstate New York in June, he did something fairly common: took video of the wedding, […]
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8:27 PM | Woman Grows A Nose On Her Spine After Stem Cell Experiment
Just a regular nose on somebody's face. David Goehring via Flickr CC 2.0 Eight years ago, doctors took nasal tissue samples and grafted them onto the spines of 20 quadriplegics. The idea was that stem cells within the nasal tissue might turn into neurons that could help repair the damaged spinal cord, and the experiment actually worked a few of the patients, who regained a little bit of sensation. But it didn’t go well for one woman in particular, who not only didn’t experience […]
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8:26 PM | Scientists Discover Two Most Distant Stars Ever Detected in Milky Way Galaxy
A team of astronomers using the Red Channel spectrograph at the MMT Observatory on Mt. Hopkins in Arizona has discovered the most distant Milky Way stars known to date – ULAS J001535.72+015549.6 and ULAS J074417.48+253233.0. These cool red giants are extremely far away, at distances of 775,000 and 900,000 light years, respectively. The distant outskirts [...]
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8:18 PM | How US satellites pinpointed source of missile that shot down airliner
Satellite technology built to detect ballistic missile launches caught Buk’s signature.
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8:09 PM | Making computers better at seeing cats. Dogs, too.
Cats and dogs are among the many objects people are pretty good at recognizing, but computers are not. “Look, this is a cat!” and “Look, that’s a dog!” are cries you are more likely to hear from a person than from a silicon-based computer. (In truth, you are not all that likely to hear people […]
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7:56 PM | Truly Social Media
A change of scenery is an excellent treatment for depression, anxiety, and worry. So Mr. Z and I are going out tonight to see a band that he never wanted to see before.  But you know, they are taper friendly, and he has this fancy new bit of gear, and it's nice weather, and his […]
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7:36 PM | DARPA's Silicon "System On A Chip" Is Pretty
DARPA ELASTx Microchip ELASTx stands for "Efficient Linearized All-Silicon Transmitter ICs" DARPA The future of silicon transmitters looks a lot like an 8-bit adventure game. Developed by DARPA, the Efficient Linearized All-Silicon Transmitter ICs (ELASTx) is a complete, all-on-one chip system that operates at 94 gigahertz. This means it transmits in the millimeter-wave frequencies, which are a relatively untapped part of the electromagnetic spectrum that's particularly useful […]
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7:34 PM | Sending Light Through The Skull To Influence Brain Activity
Genetically engineered protein responds remotely to red light. Originally published:  Jul 18 2014 - 3:15pm By:  Peter Gwynne, Contributor Science category:  Animals Human Body Physics News section:  Inside Science News Service […]
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7:21 PM | The Five Components of a Robust Quality Management System For Biobanks
This blog post is part of a series based on information presented at a biobank networking event hosted by Thermo Fisher Scientific earlier this year in the UK. As we’ve mentioned before, any variation in how biobank samples are collected, processed and stored can have a significant impact on downstream analyses and/or applications. Dr Nigel Read the rest of this article The post The Five Components of a Robust Quality Management System For Biobanks appeared first on Accelerating […]
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7:14 PM | Slimy invaders, giant snails: Q&A with mollusk expert Ellen Strong
It is one of the world’s most destructive invasive species, and possibly the slimiest. Thirty-five pounds of live African giant snails (Achatina fulica) were stopped […] The post Slimy invaders, giant snails: Q&A with mollusk expert Ellen Strong appeared first on Smithsonian Science.
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7:00 PM | Rogue Geoengineering Project May Have Increased Salmon Numbers
Algal Blooms Along Canada's West Coast Left: George dumping iron into the ocean (via New Energy Times). Right: This August 2012 NASA satellite data shows relatively high concentrations of chlorophyll as yellows and oranges in the region of the Pacific where George claims to have dumped more than 100 tons of iron. Giovanni/Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center/NASA California businessman Russ George made headlines in 2012 when he, in cooperation with a group from a […]
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6:31 PM | iLabs: PANDEMIC!!!! (The class)
This past week we hosted the CSI Epidemic summer camp group in the Micro World Investigate Lab on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, and Walt Gurley hosted them once on Friday in the Visual World Investigate Lab. I taught the general introduction to epidemiology on Tuesday, and Walt ended the week this morning with a class […]
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6:30 PM | Health Concerns Downstream of Alberta’s Tar Sands
I first met Doctor John O’Connor at the Wood Buffalo Brewing Company, one of the only places to eat or drink at in the tar sands capital Fort McMurray that’s not a chain. O’conner had also invited Laurie McDaniel, a candidate from the New Democratic Party for the Candadian parliament, and her assistant Shannon. (McDaniel…
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6:17 PM | How wealth is passed on through the generations You may have...
How wealth is passed on through the generations You may have seen John Oliver use the lottery to demonstrate how income inequality works, but why has it recently become more of a problem?  UC Berkeley’s Robert Reich talks about how our recent policies around the estate tax have long term consequences: We’re on the cusp of the largest inter-generational wealth transfer in history. The “self-made” man or woman, the symbol of American meritocracy, is […]
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6:15 PM | "Go Big or Go Home" in Science for All
Problems with the BRAIN InitiativeContinue reading on Medium »
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6:00 PM | Fashion Circuit
No summary available for this post.
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5:59 PM | Ainissa Ramirez: Science Vs Football
Materials scientist Ainissa Ramirez never connected with her brothers' love of football until she unexpectedly ends up writing a book about it. Ainissa G. Ramirez, Ph.D. is a science evangelist, who is passionate about getting the general public excited about science. She co-authored Newton's Football (Random House) and authored Save Our Science (TED Books). She has appeared on NPR and CNN; gave a TED talk in 2012; and blogs for The Huffington Post. She was a mechanical engineering professor […]
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5:45 PM | Computer Models Show What Exactly Would Happen To Earth After A Nuclear War
Wasp Prime Test From Operation Teapot Wikimedia Commons You've seen what a nuclear winter looks like, as imagined by filmmakers and novelists. Now you can take a look at what scientists have to say. In a new study, a team of four U.S. atmospheric and environmental scientists modeled what would happen after a "limited, regional nuclear war." To inexpert ears, the consequences sound pretty subtle—two or three degrees of global cooling, a nine percent reduction in yearly rainfall. […]
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5:38 PM | The top of the Earth burns, makes Global Warming Worse
AGW -> AA -> QR -> WW -> WF -> DS -> A- -> AGW The great cycle of climate change. Anthropogenic Global Warming has resulted in a relatively increased warming of the poles, which changes the dynamic of jet streams forming thus causing quasi-ressonant (stuck in place) Rossby Waves (curvy slow moving jet streams)…
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5:19 PM | Why Rosie O’Donnell was Wrong to Kill a Hammerhead: The Top 5 Coolest Things About These Strange-Looking Sharks
In 2012, Rosie O’Donnell killed an endangered hammerhead shark for sport, and then mocked the conservationists outraged by her actions. Now, the controversy has resurfaced, with O’Donnell chosen to replace previous co-host Jenny McCarthy on the popular television talk show The View. O’Donnell is an influential public figure, yet still openly refuses to apologize for killing an endangered species. Is this the kind of person we want spreading her opinions on TV? Last Friday, […]
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4:58 PM | You Can Own The Longest Piece Of Fossilized Feces Ever Sold
A poop for the ages. Copyright Chait.com Remnants of prehistoric beasts are top-ticket items at auctions worldwide. Objects ranging from eggs to imprints of their skin have found new homes in museums and private collections. But a new paleontological oddity has made its way to auction, and it’s a biggie: a coprolite, or piece of fossilized feces, that is allegedly the longest ever to go on sale. The fossil is being auctioned by the I. M. Chait gallery in Los Angeles, […]
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4:56 PM | The Brain, Down Syndrome, and Antibiotics
At first glance the title might sound a little weird. But if that is the case then you probably want to read this. Researchers  have identified a group of cells in […]

Chen, C., Jiang, P., Xue, H., Peterson, S., Tran, H., McCann, A., Parast, M., Li, S., Pleasure, D., Laurent, L. & Loring, J. (2014). Role of astroglia in Down’s syndrome revealed by patient-derived human-induced pluripotent stem cells, Nature Communications, 5 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5430

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4:30 PM | Today on New Scientist
All the latest on newscientist.com: why we should save weird species first, US libraries reinvented, hunting Australia's WIMPs underground and more
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4:28 PM | EDGE is the new endangered: The top species to save
Animals with high EDGE scores typically have few close relatives and have distinct looks and ways. If they become extinct there will be nothing like them left
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4:28 PM | Londoners, look out for these giant digital eyes
Gaze deep into the shop windows to the digital soul and discover something about your media-age emotions
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