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Weighing Trees - Now With Lasers
A terrestrial laser scanning technique that allows the structure of vegetation to be 3D-mapped to the millimeter is more accurate in determining the biomass of trees and carbon stocks in forests than current methods, according to a paper in Methods in Ecology and Evolution. The study authors ...
By News Staff
Guest Post: Ben Allanach, On Open Access
Ben Allanach, guest blogger, is a Professor of Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge. He is grumpy about the way that public funds are being unnecessarily directed to scientific publishing houses. So I am offering this space to him to hear what he has to say about that...Recently, ...
By Tommaso Dorigo
The Origin Of Theta Auroras Revealed
Auroras are the most visible manifestation of the sun's effect on Earth, but many aspects of these spectacular displays are still poorly understood. One particular type of very high-latitude aurora is known as a theta aurora -- seen from above it looks like the Greek letter theta, an oval with ...
By News Staff
Finally, We May Get Instant-On Computers
Computers don't really boot up any faster than they have in decades and that is due to limitations in electric currents (and ignoring the bloated software rolled out after every new chip), which are also a significant power drain.The solution may be on the horizon. A team has created a room ...
By News Staff
Shale Gas Is Here To Stay - Here Are Ways To Keep It Safe And Productive
Though the New York governor recently made a pretense of banning fracking in the state (it was already not allowed) and the California governor said they should do the same thing, they're both being a little hypocritical. New York would have brown-outs without the energy they buy from Pennsylvania ...
By News Staff
How Will Climate Change Impact Agriculture?
Climate change impacts could mean uncertain transformations of global agriculture systems by 2050, according to a new paper from the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis. Climate change has always happened - once-large cities are now desert wastelands - but it is a mistake ...
By News Staff
2014 Sees New Heat Records In 19 European Countries
A man relaxes in some decidedly un-Scottish weather outside the venue for this year's Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. AAP Image/ Dave HuntBy Andrew King, University of Melbourne; David Karoly, University of Melbourne and Sophie Lewis, Australian National UniversityIt’s clear: 2014 has been a scorcher ...
By The Conversation
Conservation Scientists Say Nuclear Energy Is Necessary For Biodiversity
Leading conservationists from around the world have called for environmental lobbyists to stop blocking nuclear energy in defiance of the science consensus. It's clean, it's green, and it's needed to mitigate climate change and protect biodiversity. In an open letter to environmentalists, over ...
By News Staff
Why Some People Are Better Navigators: Brain's 'Homing' Signal Identified
It's no secret that some people are better at navigating than others, but it has been unclear why. In order to successfully navigate to a destination, you need to know which direction you are currently facing and which direction to travel in. For example, 'I am facing north and want to head east' ...
By News Staff
A Vegetarian Carnivorous Plant...Wait, What?
A carnivorous plant is a delight for people because everyone knows plant don't catch and eat animals - except some do. Like us, they need animals for nutrition. Do carnivorous plants also sometimes shake off nature and become vegetarians? It seems so. The aquatic carnivorous bladderwort, which ...
By News Staff
5 Common Misconceptions About Seasonal Flu
If you're sick, stay home. ShutterstockBy Derek Gatherer, Lancaster UniversityIt’s that time of the year again. You probably think I mean Christmas, but as a virologist the sight of glitter, fairy lights and moulting pine trees immediately makes me think of the flu season. And if there’s one ...
By The Conversation
When Embryonic Stem Cells Don't Know What To Make Of Themselves
A new paper has found that inhibiting or blocking stem cells ability to make a specific decision, leads to better cell growth and could lead to defined ways to differentiate stem cells. Th authors say their research is the first comprehensive analysis of a pathway important for stem and cancer ...
By News Staff
Parkinson’s Disease Reverted In Rats
Scientists have demonstrated that mobility can be restored in patients with Parkinson's disease, the major degenerative disease of the motor system worldwide. The experiments used stem cells to generate dopaminergic nerve cells and reactivate the production of dopamine in the brains of rats ...
By News Staff
Blame City Life, Not Fast Food, For The Surge In Diabetes
City folk may not think much of rural living - but they are healthier.A new study finds that diabetes, once rather uncommon, is now affecting 387 million people worldwide - and 77 percent of it is in developed nations.The reason is stress, write the authors of a paper in the Journal of Clinical ...
By News Staff
Sedation Nation: Benzodiazepine Use Highest In Older People
Though it has higher risks in older people, and those are well-known and cautioned against, prescription use of benzodiazepines increases steadily with age, despite the known risks for older people, according to a comprehensive analysis of benzodiazepine prescribing in the United States. Benzodiazepines ...
By News Staff
Worldwide, Life Expectancy Has Gone Up Over 6 Years Since 1990
Though deaths due to drug use and hepatitis C have gone up, falling death rates due to cancer and heart disease have resulted in a global life expectancy increase of 5.8 years in men and 6.6 years in women between 1990 and 2013, according to an analysis from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 ...
By News Staff
Mental Illnesses Run In Families, So How Can We Protect Children?
Children should be taken into consideration when helping adults with mental health issues. ShutterstockBy Sam Cartwright-Hatton, University of SussexMental illness runs in families. This is well known and uncontroversial. There is much that we could do to reduce this risk, but we currently do almost ...
By The Conversation
To Build Character In Kids, Forget Focusing On Self-Esteem
An overdose of self-esteem won't build character. ShutterstockBy Kristján Kristjánsson, University of BirminghamIn the last few months the UK’s two main political parties have entered into an apparent bidding war over which of them can elevate the teaching of character highest on their educational ...
By The Conversation
Life's Big Questions Require Science Literacy
Everyone needs to understand the basics of science to participate fully in the democratic process. shutterstock.By Jonathan Garlick, Tufts University.Science isn’t important only to scientists or those who profess an interest in it. Whether you find fascinating every new discovery reported or ...
By The Conversation
Time To Stop Thinking Of Video Games As Just 'Software'
Games appear in galleries, does that make them art? blakespot, CC BYBy Ashok Ranchhod, University of Southampton and Vanissa Wanick Vieira, University of Southampton.The UK’s video games industry body Tiga has called for the products to be treated like other creative industries such as television ...
By The Conversation
Babies In Your 30s Is Not Modern - Your Great-Grandmother Did It Too
Freeze your eggs or your career? ShutterstockBy Jenna Healey, Yale UniversityThe shift towards late motherhood – commonly defined as motherhood after 35 – is often presented as a story of progress and technological liberation from the biological clock.The narrative goes something like this ...
By The Conversation
W-Band Wireless: High Speed Internet, Outdoors And Everywhere
A European team is working on the world’s first W-band wireless system -  millimeter wave technology for high speed wireless mobile and fixed point Internet - as part of a £2.8 million TWEETHER project.Millimeter waves - found in the spectrum between microwaves and infrared waves - are ...
By News Staff
Pilot Project For Removal Of CO2 From Deep Waters
In the former mining area Herrerias in Andalusia, the deep waters of Pit Lake Guadiana show extremely high concentration of dissolved carbon dioxide (CO2). Levels are so high that if it were to bubble up, human beings close-by would be jeopardized. To demonstrate a possible fix, scientists ...
By News Staff
Sports Math: Using A Cricket Nightwatchman Is A Bad Idea
Nightwatchman Nathan Lyon bowled by Mohammed Sharmi last week. AAP/ David MariuzBy Tim Trudgian, Australian National UniversityImagine you are captain of the national cricket team. With 20 minutes left in day one of a test match, your top-order batsman is dismissed. Do you employ a nightwatchman ...
By The Conversation
Ah, Cuba. My father’s college roommate’s mother – are you following so far? – was a travel...  more »
Here is a flower we all (in the northern hemisphere at least) associate with Christmastime, Euphorbia...  more »
Many people addicted to prescription medications do not think that they have a problem. These addictions...  more »
With just under 4 years until its planned launch in October 2018, the James Webb Space Telescope...  more »
Cycling for Science #1 - TensegrityVelocipedological scienceCycling is more than just a pleasant...  more »