Posts

November 16, 2014

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11:41 PM | Sioux Native Americans Release Statement Calling Keystone XL Pipeline “An Act of War”
In 2008, Canadian oil and gas company TransCanada began construction on the Keystone Pipeline, an extensive, four-phase pipeline project to connect Canadian tar sands (a vast source of crude oil) to refineries and distribution centers in the U.S. The first phase, completed in 2010, is a 2,147-mi stretch of pipeline that runs from Hardisty, Alberta to southern Illinois via Steele City, Nebraska. Phase II, completed in early 2011, added another 291 miles of pipeline, connecting the Keystone […]
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11:21 PM | Two loosey gooseys?
A two-fer in the UK. Is a penguin on the loose in Looe?. Looe tourist information centre wants to know if you have seen a penguin on the loose. It comes after someone told staff on Wednesday that he believed he had seen one on Hannafore Beach. Escaped emu on the loose causing problems for… Source: Doubtful News
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10:41 PM | Alexander Grothendieck 1928–2014
Creating vast beautiful mansions from the becoming of nothing L’espace d’un homme film source Alexander Grothendieck, who signed his works in French “Alexandre” but otherwise kept the spelling of his German-Jewish heritage, passed away Thursday in southwestern France. Today we mourn his passing, and try to describe some of his vision. Part of the story […]
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9:27 PM | Public Shaming in the Interest of Orthodoxy
In re: Time magazine’s poll of words which are, like, grody to the max OK, let’s give Steinmetz a big heaping dollop of benefit-of-the-doubt. Suppose you really are just exasperated by celebrities being, you know, celebrities in interviews. Sure. Fine. Then shouldn’t you direct your ire to the media apparatus which persists in caring about […]
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9:23 PM | Amazing Brain Images Take Over Times Square
If you are in NYC in the month of November and your late night socializing takes you to Times Square, be certain to time it so you can see, from 11:57pm to midnight (EST, of course), a short film by... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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9:00 PM | Death Rate From Heart Disease Declines 4 Percent Since 2000
Since the year 2000, mortality rates for heart disease declined by almost 4 percent even as higher blood pressure and obesity role, according to a new paper in JAMA. Matthew D. Ritchey, D.P.T., of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Atlanta, and colleagues examined the contributions of heart disease subtypes, such as coronary HD (CHD) mortality, to overall heart disease (HD) mortality trends during 2000-2010. read more
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8:34 PM | Could Depression be Infectious? One Researcher Says Yes.
Source: sb.cc.stonybrook.edu/news/Fifteen to 20 percent of us will suffer a Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) in our lifetime.  And some of us suffer some degree of depression throughout our lives.  Researcher Turhan Canli, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychology and Radiology at Stony Brook University (left), proposes that we build a new concept of depression: that depression may result from an infection by a parasite, bacteria or virus.According to Dr. Canli, and as anyone who has […]
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8:27 PM | Beta-Blockers For Some Heart Failure Linked With Improved Survival
Up to 50 percent of patients with heart failure have normal or near-normal ejection fraction, termed heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFPEF). The risk of death in HFPEF may be as high as in heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFREF), but there is no proven therapy. Beta-blockers improve outcomes in HFREF and may be beneficial in HFPEF, but data are sparse and inconclusive, and beta-blockers are currently not indicated for treating HFPEF, according to background […]
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7:34 PM | The World’s Smallest Sculptures – Smaller Than A Human Hair (Photo Gallery)
According to British artist and “nanosculptor”, Jonty Hurwitz… “We live in an era where the impossible has finally come to pass. In our own little way we have become demi-gods of creation.” The quote above comes just after the debut of Hurwitz’s latest creation, “nano-sculptures”. These sculptures are so small that they are hardly visible to the naked eye, some having a width smaller than a human hair, which has a thickness of […]
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6:33 PM | Tackling Homophobia
Laura Finnigan (17) from Liverpool wants to end homophobia. She has helped to make a Fixers film, which shows that being lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or transgender (LGBT) isn’t a lifestyle choice, but part of a person's identity.
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6:26 PM | A third wave?
An article in the Chronicle of Higher Education (via the always-excellent Mind Hacks) argues cogently that as a new torrent of data about the brain looms, we need to ensure that it is balanced by a corresponding development in theory. That must surely be right, but I wonder whether the torrent of new information is going to bring about another change in paradigm, as the advent of computers in the twentieth century surely did? Subject:  Artificial Intelligence […]
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5:30 PM | Hard Of Thinking: If You're Bad At Logic, Logically You Would Never Know
You might never know that you're hard of thinking. Robin Zebrowski/Flickr, CC BY-NCBy Stephan Lewandowsky, University of Bristol and Richard Pancost, University of BristolIt is an unfortunate paradox: if you’re bad at something, you probably also lack the skills to assess your own performance. And if you don’t know much about a topic, you’re unlikely to be aware of the scope of your own ignorance. read more
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4:56 PM | The myth of AI
The idea that computers are people has a long and storied history. It goes back to the very origins of computers, and even from before. Subject:  Artificial Intelligence
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4:45 PM | This Graphic Designer Turns Dirty Car Windows Into Masterpieces In His Spare Time (Pictures)
Scott Wade is a graphic user interface designer from Texas. He is also one of the world’s premier dirty car artists. Yes, dirty car art is a real thing, and it actually has a pretty big following. Scott’s exceptional talent for the craft of dirty car art has taken him all over the world, turning dusty car windows into amazing masterpieces for all sorts of different clients. Wade got his inspiration from his time living on a long dirt road in central
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4:30 PM | Was The 1896 Heatwave Deleted From The Record?
Nationals MP George Christensen told Parliament that the hot temperatures of 1896 have been "wiped from the official record". It's a bit more complicated than that. AAP Image/Lukas CochBy Neville Nicholls, Monash University read more
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4:03 PM | Secondhand Marijuana Smoke As Bad As Tobacco Smoke For Blood Vessels
Breathing secondhand marijuana smoke could damage your heart and blood vessels as much as secondhand cigarette smoke, according to preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2014.read more
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3:16 PM | Evergreening And How Drug Companies Keep Prices High
Pfizer's evergreening tactics have made it the target of protests. Michael Fleshman/Flickr, CC BY-SABy Hazel Moir, Australian National University and Deborah Gleeson, La Trobe UniversityEfforts by pharmaceutical companies to extend their patents cost taxpayers millions of dollars each year. In some cases they also mean people are subjected to unnecessary clinical trials. read more
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2:30 PM | 2014 - Global Warming Is Back On Track?
From 2000-2013 the global ocean surface temperature did not rise in spite of increasing greenhouse gas concentrations. This Global Warming Hiatus generated a lot of public and scientific interest and no small amount of skepticism about the accuracy of the numerical models created by climate scientists. But data is another matter entirely and as of April 2014 ocean warming has picked up speed again, according to a new analysis of ocean temperature datasets.  read more
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2:00 PM | Gravitational Waves Could Unlock Secrets Of The Black Hole Universe
When two giant LIGO detectors are switched on in the US next year, they will help scientists pick up the faint ripples of black hole collisions millions of years ago, known as gravitational waves.  Black holes cannot be seen, but scientists hope the revamped detectors, which act like giant microphones, will find remnants of black hole collisions - and theoretical physicists hope experimentalists will give validation for their numerical model.read more
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11:28 AM | This Week in Chemistry – The Smell of Blood, & Ebola Treatment Trials
  Here’s another edition of the ‘This Week in Chemistry’ feature, providing updates on the latest chemical research, as well as summarising the chemistry stories that have made the news in the past week. The past seven days have seen the chemical behind the metallic odour that lures carnivores to blood identified, as well as […]
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9:54 AM | A New Search For The A Boson With CMS
I am quite happy to report today that the CMS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider has just published a new search which fills a gap in studies of extended Higgs boson sectors. It is a search for the decay of the A boson into Zh pairs, where the Z in turn decays to an electron-positron or a muon-antimuon pair, and the h is assumed to be the 125 GeV Higgs and is sought for in its decay to b-quark pairs. If you are short of time, this is the bottomline: no A boson is found in Run 1 […]
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6:03 AM | Linkage
An experiment in allowing journal reviewers to reveal their names (the G+ post has several additional links on academics including some well known graph theorists taking money to deliberately distort university rankings)Pumpkin geometry: stereographic projection of shadows from carved balls (G+; no actual pumpkins involved)Clint Fulkerson: an abstract artist whose work feels somehow both geometric and organic (G+)Paper popups by Peter Dahmen (G+)Crochet Platonic polyhedra by June Gilbank […]
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4:30 AM | Scientists sneak Alzheimer medicine into the brain
Scientists have succeeded in creating molecules that can escort Alzheimer's medicine through the impervious sheath that separates blood vessels from
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3:52 AM | How to write a PhD thesis your committee will NOT approve
Sometimes it takes 7 years to get back to square one… Jesse was a bright and ambitious student in a Biochemistry PhD program. She was always ready to learn new techniques, and she diversified her skill set by working in the animal facility, cell culture room, and also in a mass spectrometry lab. Her supervisor [...]
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2:12 AM | Space program or booby shirt? Ladies, start your fainting couches
Yale-educated University of Tennessee law professor Glenn Harlan Reynolds has favored the world with his op-ed in USA Today (really, USA Today?) about #Shirtgate or #Shirtstorm, depending on your hashtag of choice. If you don't know about #shirtstorm, the short version is this: A scientist heading the team who landed a lander (natch) on a comet--a milestone for humankind--decided to honor the moment by wearing a bowling (?) shirt sporting hypersexualized cartoon women wielding equally […]
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1:43 AM | Blogworthiness: “It’s a Left Brain, Right Brain Thing”
As some of my readers will know, I've been interviewing science bloggers this year for my PhD dissertation on how science bloggers decide what to write about. As I'm transcribing (typing word-for-word) the interview recordings, I've been sharing short excerpts on Twitter using the hashtag #MySciBlog. Some interview gems, though, deserve to be shared in a longer format. That's how I felt about the following quote, from a scientist blogger, about how he/she decides what is blogworthy:   […]
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1:43 AM | Blogworthiness: “It’s a Left Brain, Right Brain Thing”
As some of my readers will know, I've been interviewing science bloggers this year for my PhD dissertation on how science bloggers decide what to write about. As I'm transcribing (typing word-for-word) the interview recordings, I've been sharing short excerpts on Twitter using the hashtag #MySciBlog. Some interview gems, though, deserve to be shared in a longer format. That's how I felt about the following quote, from a scientist blogger, about how he/she decides what is blogworthy:   […]
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12:15 AM | Weekly Science Picks
Welcome at the end of one more exciting and this time, we could say, historically amazing week. Namely, these days we are witnessing a highly interesting ESA’s mission called Rosetta. For such a reason, this week’s review will be dedicated […]test The post Weekly Science Picks appeared first on Australian Science.

November 15, 2014

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8:17 PM | This Strange Wrinkle-less Brain Was Recently Found in A Long-Forgotten Lab Closet
One of the most familiar characteristics of the human brain are its grooves (sulci) and folds (gyri). But not everyone’s brain is the same when it comes to these structures. Roughly 1 out of every 85,470 children are born with a rare brain condition known as lissencephaly, which is characterized by a lack of sulci and gyri. The condition is a result of abnormal neuron migration during the early weeks of embryo development, and most people born with it pass away before
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8:00 PM | Severe dental fluorosis the real cause of IQ deficits?
A new study finds cognitive function defects, like IQ, in children are not significantly related to fluoride in drinking water. But they are associated with medium and severe dental fluorosis. This interests me for two reasons: The report is by Choi and Grandjean … Continue reading →
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