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The Oldest Fossil Insect Might Lose Its Title

3 June 2017 - 1:15pm
Ross Pomeroy, RealClearScience
Have you ever considered the life of a paleoentomologist? Studying fossil insects is a great gig, but it does present its share of difficulties.Foremost among those difficulties: finding ancient insects is not nearly as easy as unearthing dinosaurs. Their small size and lack of hard bone make them ill suited to preservation. Dating back 125 million years, insects can be found encased in amber, but before that, there are far fewer to be found.
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Perfectly Preserved Mummies Yield Medical Secrets

3 June 2017 - 12:06am
N. St. Fleur, NY Times
Hundreds of skeletons have lain scattered around a crypt beneath a church in Vilnius, Lithuania, for centuries. But 23 of these remains are unlike the rest: Flesh wraps their bones, clothes cover their skin, and organs still fill their insides.They are mummies, and since they were recovered about five years ago, scientists have investigated their secrets, seeking insights into the lives of people in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries and the diseases they suffered.
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Senate Explores Threat of EMP Weapons

3 June 2017 - 12:05am
David Kramer, Physics Today
Every couple of years a congressional committee takes a look at the threat to the US posed by both naturally occurring geomagnetic disturbances (GMDs) and attacks with an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) generated by a nuclear weapon. On 4 May the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources took its turn, hearing from witnesses who alternately sought to scare and reassure the lawmakers.
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Why Medical "Breakthroughs" Are Too Good to Be True

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Monya Baker, Undark
The consequences of irreproducible research are real. When patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, enroll in a clinical trial, it is their single chance of getting better: There is no cure for the disease, and the two drugs approved to treat it are only marginally effective.
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Limitless Lab-Grown Blood Is Tantalizingly Close

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Shelly Fan, Singularity Hub
Blood stem cells are things of wonder: hidden inside each single cell is the power to reconstitute an entire blood system, like a sort of biological big bang.Yet with great power comes greater vulnerability. Once these master cells are compromised, as in the case of leukemia and other blood disorders, treatment options are severely limited.
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Is ADHD a Sleep Disorder?

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Alice Klein, NewScientist
A DRUG normally used to treat narcolepsy and excessive daytime sleepiness also seems to improve symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms. The finding supports the idea that ADHD might be a sleep disorder.People who have been diagnosed with ADHD find it difficult to concentrate and are generally hyperactive. But many with the condition also find it difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep at night, and feel drowsy during the day.
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When Will Robots Deserve Human Rights?

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
George Dvorsky, Gizmodo
Films and TV shows like Blade Runner, Humans, and Westworld, where highly advanced robots have no rights, trouble our conscience. They show us that our behaviors are not just harmful to robotsthey also demean and diminish us as a species.
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10 Ways Astronauts Help You Stay Healthy

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Caplan & Winnard, Conversation
Astronauts on the International Space Station are growing crystals that could help develop new drugs for use on Earth. Here are ten healthcare technologies that have already come from space...
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The Most Important Scientist You've Never Heard Of

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Lucas Reilly, MFloss
For 60 years, American drivers unknowingly poisoned themselves by pumping leaded gasoline into their tanks. Here is the lifelong saga of Clair Pattersona scientist who helped build the atomic bomb and discovered the true age of the Earthand how he took on a billion-dollar industry to save humanity from itself.
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Virtual Reality Is Helping String Theory Come to Life

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Nick Stockton, Wired
The robot is building a tesseract. He motions at a glowing cube floating before him, and an identical cube emerges. He drags it to the left, but the two cubes stay connected, strung together by glowing lines radiating from their corners. The robot lowers its hands, and the cubes coalesce into a single shapewith 24 square faces, 16 vertices, and eight connected cubes existing in four dimensions. A tesseract.
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Do Chess Players Have Higher IQs?

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Alex B. Berezow, ACSH
American culture is dominated by a can-do attitude. The prevailing belief is that no matter who you are, you can do whatever you want, as long as you work hard enough. When little Johnny says he wants to be an astronaut, everybody cheers his ambition. However, those who know little Johnny are secretly thinking, "You ain't smart enough, kid."Though we don't like to admit it, intelligence and IQ matter. Creative people tend to have higher IQs. The traditional view is that expertise, in general, requires a higher IQ.
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US Withdraws From Paris Climate Accord

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Jeff Tollefson, Nature News
US President Donald Trump has decided to withdraw the United States from the 2015 Paris climate accord, after months of heated debate among members of his administration. More than 190 nations agreed to the pact in December 2015, pledging to hold average global temperatures to 1.52C above pre-industrial levels.The United States will withdraw from the Paris climate accord but begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris accord or an entirely new transaction on terms that are fair to the United States and its businesses, workers and taxpayers, Trump said during a press...
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Why Is Human Vulnerability in Vogue?

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Claire Colebrook, Aeon Magazine
The end of the world is a growth industry. You can almost feel Armageddon in the air: from survivalist and prepper' websites (survivopedia.com, doomandbloom.net, prepforshtf.com) to new academic disciplines (disaster studies', Anthropocene studies', extinction studies'), human vulnerability is in vogue.The panic isn't merely about civilisational threats, but existential ones. Beyond doomsday proclamations about mass extinction, climate change, viral pandemics, global systemic collapse and resource depletion, we seem to be seized by an anxiety about losing the qualities that make...
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Martian Lake Had Life-Supporting Environments

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Mike Wall, Space.com
he window of opportunity for life to arise on ancient Mars was apparently broader than scientists had thought.The lake that once filled much of Mars' huge Gale Crater featured multiple potentially habitable environments segregated by depth, as some water bodies here on Earth do, a new study based on observations by NASA's Curiosity rover suggests."This chemical stratification might've provided a sort of menu of options for any microbes that preferred one environment over the other to take advantage of," study lead author Joel Hurowitz, a geoscientist at Stony Brook University in New York,...
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Eating Less May Lengthen Your Life

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Alex Riley, BBC Future
In a restaurant setting sometime in the not-too distant future, a man and a woman are on their first date. After the initial nerves subside, all is going well.The man is 33, he says, has been single for most of those years, and, although he doesn't mention it, knows he is looking to settle down and have a family. The woman replies that she is 52, has been married, divorced, and has children in their early 20s. He had no idea she looked his age, or younger.
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Buying Your Own Piece of the Final Frontier

2 June 2017 - 9:08pm
Fraser Cain, Universe Today
Compared to a regular human, the Earth is enormous. And compared to the Earth, the Universe is really enormous. Like, maybe infinitely enormous.And yet, Earth is the only place humans are allowed to own. You can buy a plot of land in the city or the country, but you can't buy land on the Moon, on Mars or on Alpha Centauri.It's not that someone wouldn't be willing to sell it to you. I could point you at a few locations on the internet where someone would be glad to exchange your Earth money for some property rights on the Moon. But I can also point you to a series of United Nations...
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Fleeing Paris Accord Makes Scientific Sense

2 June 2017 - 8:16am
Tom Hartsfield, RCScience
President Trump's announcement of the United States' withdrawal from the Paris Accord climate agreement is a bombshell news story. His declaration has met with widespread condemnation in the press and scientific outlets. These critics raise some good points.Piecing together a broad international agreement that extracts concessions from hundreds of nations is a Herculean effort.There's no guarantee that if this accord falls apart a future agreement could be reached againif it should be deemed necessary.
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The Higgs Boson: A Not-So-Godlike Particle

6 May 2017 - 12:15am
Paul Sutter, Space.com
Let's be perfectly honest. The Higgs boson and its role in the universe are not the easiest things to explain. It doesn't help that the Higgs has the horrible nickname of "the God Particle" and is often described as being "responsible for mass in the universe" or something like that.
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A Mysterious Case of Radioactive Toothpaste

6 May 2017 - 12:13am
Eric Grundhauser, Atlas Obscura
In addition to developing the weapon that changed well everything, the Manhattan Project is the source of countless fascinating stories of innovation and intrigue. But not all of them can be considered successes, in retrospect. Sometimes they are tales of blind alleys, lost causes, and honest failures.
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Gravitational Waves Could Reveal Extra Dimensions

6 May 2017 - 12:12am
Leah Crane, NewScientist
HIDDEN dimensions could cause ripples through reality by modifying gravitational waves and spotting such signatures of extra dimensions could help solve some of the biggest mysteries of the universe.Physicists have long wondered why gravity is so weak compared with the other fundamental forces. This may be because some of it is leaking away into extra dimensions beyond the three spatial dimensions we experience.
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