Stop eating your pet's food

Apparently people are eating their pet's food, and they're getting salmonella poisoning in return...

A scientific reference manual for US judges

Science and our legal system intersect frequently and everywhere - climate, health care, intellectual...

Rainbow connection

On the way to work this morning, I noticed people pointing out the train window and smiling. From...

Neutrinos on espresso

Maybe they stopped by Starbucks for a little faster-than-the-speed-of-light pick me up....

User picture.
picture for Hank Campbellpicture for Bente Lilja Byepicture for Michael Whitepicture for Heidi Hendersonpicture for Patrick Lockerbypicture for Mark Changizi
Becky JungbauerRSS Feed of this column.

A scientist and journalist by training, I enjoy all things science, especially science-related humor. My column title is a throwback to Jane Austen's famous first line in Pride and Prejudice

... Read More »


Record setting year for highs and lows - global warming doesn't just mean hot, people.

H/t Toothpaste for Dinner
Does science really need to give Tiger Woods/Brett Favre an excuse?

"Sorry, sweetheart, I didn't mean to bang anything with a hole and a heart beat that came my way/text that chick pictures of my junk. But you have to forgive me because it's in my DNA. Oh look, it's tee time/game time again."
Researchers may have found a way to reverse damage to nerves caused by multiple sclerosis, according to a study by scientists at the universities of Cambridge and Edinburgh. A report by AFP said the team "identified a mechanism essential to regenerating myelin sheaths - the layers of insulation that protect nerve fibres in the brain - and showed how it could be used to make the brain's own stem cells undertake this repair."
Ah, the good old days, where everyone in the neighborhood had kids named John and Mary (or Juan and Maria, or Jean and Marie, etc). But all of the warm fuzzy melting pot of same-name-ness started to disintegrate in the 1960s, when diversification of baby names started in the US, "at the same time that Americans started placing more emphasis on individuality and less on collectivity and fitting in," according to the Live Science article.1
This story about the "chubby" galaxy cluster Abell 1689 and dark matter made me laugh out loud. Here's the title:

Chubby Galaxy Cluster Suggests Dark Energy Was Stronger Long Ago

Then, later on in the story:

The new dark matter map reveals that Abell 1689 is denser at its center than physical models would predict.

"Abell 1689 appears to have been well fed at birth from the high density of dark matter surrounding it," Coe told "This has given it a chubby belly which it has carried through its adult life to appear as we observe it today."
Alcohol is the most dangerous drug in the UK by a considerable margin, according to a Lancet study, beating heroin and crack cocaine (second and third place, respectively). The study will "reopen calls for the drugs classification system to be scrapped and a concerted campaign launched against drink," an article in the Guardian notes.
Led by the sacked government drugs adviser David Nutt with colleagues from the breakaway Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs, the study says that if drugs were classified on the basis of the harm they do, alcohol would be class A, alongside heroin and crack cocaine.