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Bears, wolves and panthers, oh my: the return of predators to the US

Removing predators from the wild has thrown ecosystems off-kilter, triggering domino effects that scientists are just beginning to understand. In "Wild Predator Invasion," NOVA follows scientists who are trying a simple but controversial solution: returning apex predators—like wolves, bears, and panthers—to their natural environments. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 8, 2014 - 47 comments

Just a flesh wound

Science journalist and NOVA correspondent extraordinaire Miles O'Brien was working on a story in Japan and the Philippines when a piece of luggage fell on his arm causing minor swelling. The next day his arm was amputated due to Acute Compartment Syndrome. He recounts his experience with as much humor and grace as one can muster.
posted by ghostpony on Feb 26, 2014 - 41 comments

"Abysmally poor judges of their true incapacitation from sleep loss"

Taming the Hidden Drowsiness Epidemic
posted by IvoShandor on Dec 3, 2013 - 31 comments

Science Journalism Award winners

2013 Science Journalism Award winners from the American Association for the Advancement of Science: [via Romenesko] [more inside]
posted by mediareport on Nov 6, 2013 - 4 comments

Squirrel Sunday

Squirrels in Nova Scotia work harder. Some cute squirrel photos to help you prepare for Monday. [more inside]
posted by troll on a pony on May 5, 2013 - 9 comments

An Elegant Weapon For A Less Civilized Age

They were the finest European swords the day, superior to almost any other on the battlefields of the Viking Age. Made from steel no one in Europe would know how to make until the Industrial Revolution. Stronger, more flexible, almost magical in combat, engraved with the mysterious name "+ULFBERH+T" by unknown makers, these swords were the both fearsome weapons and incredibly expensive prestige possessions. Only 171 have every been identified. And no one had made one from start to finish, using only hand tools, for over 900 years. [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey on Mar 6, 2013 - 38 comments

There is grandeur in this view of life.

The Evolution Documentary channel (autoplays video) has collected documentaries and clips about evolution available on youtube, including documentaries from BBC, Nova, and National Geographic. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Aug 3, 2012 - 8 comments

Once extracted, what you do with it is up to you...

"Ever wish you could see the strands of genetic material that make you...you?" NOVA shows you how to extract your DNA with this do-it-yourself tutorial using household items. [via]
posted by quin on Mar 8, 2012 - 38 comments

Supernova Sonata

Supernova Sonata by Alex Parker From April, 2003 until August, 2006, the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope watched four parts of the sky as often as possible. Armed with the largest digital camera in the known universe, CFHT monitored these four fields for a special type of supernova (called Type Ia) which are created by the thermonuclear detonation of one or more white-dwarf stars. Each supernova is assigned a note to be played: The volume of the note is determined by the distance to the supernova, with more distant supernova being quieter and fainter. The pitch of the note was determined by the supernova’s “stretch,” a property of how the supernova brightens and fades. Higher stretch values played higher notes. The pitches were drawn from a Phrygian dominant scale. The instrument the note was played on was determined by the properties of the galaxy which hosted each supernova. Supernovae hosted by massive galaxies are played with a stand-up bass, while supernovae hosted by less massive galaxies are played with a grand piano.
posted by ThenCameNow on May 26, 2011 - 10 comments

Journey to the Bottom of the (Cold War) Sea and Back

Submarine causalities are tragedies of war that are not always directly associated with combat. Systems failures at sea are often mysterious, with evidence and remains disappearing to all but the deepest diving vehicles. This was no different in the Cold War, with non-combat losses from the US and the Soviet Fleets. In that era of nuclear secrets, both those of nuclear-powered submarines and nuclear weapons, learning about the enemy's technology was paramount. Such an opportunity came to the US with the sinking of K-129, a Golf Class II Soviet submarine that went down with 98 men on board. The recovery took over six year, involved the possible payback of Howard Hughes, a videotaped formal sea burial that was eventually copied and given to then-President Boris Yeltsin, and decades of CIA secrecy. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on May 27, 2010 - 41 comments

Much Cooler Than Ceiling Cat!

There's ceiling cat, then there is this! Be sure to watch the video. (via.)
posted by cjorgensen on Sep 10, 2009 - 29 comments

Rat Att-att-att-attack! (You oughtta know by now...)

"Once every 48 years, forests of the bamboo known as Melocanna baccifera go into exuberant flower in parts of northeast India [a process called Mautam]. And then, like clockwork, the event is invariably followed by a plague of black rats that spring from nowhere to spread destruction and famine in their wake. For the first time on film, NOVA and National Geographic capture this massive rat population explosion in the kind of vivid detail not possible in 1959, when the last invasion occurred." Airing tonight at 8PM on your local PBS station, or catch it online here beginning tomorrow.
posted by billysumday on Feb 24, 2009 - 47 comments

Does the Nucleon come in Cherenkov blue?

Car of the Future, NOVA's latest episode, is fully online and includes a slew of extras including CC-licensed content, a brief historical overview of "innovative" automobiles, Amory Lovins flogging his Hypercar concept, the Car Talk guys making nuisances of themselves, and much more. (It's no Design for Dreaming, but really, what could be?)
posted by cog_nate on Apr 24, 2008 - 21 comments

Judgment Day on NOVA

Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial. Tonight on NOVA, a documentary on the six-week trial of Kitzmiller v. Dover. [Full transcripts of trial] The court's decision [PDF] by Judge John E. Jones III, chastised the defense's dishonesty and the "breathtaking inanity" of the Dover School Board's policy. Eugenie Scott of the National Center for Science Education recounts the the trial here. According to Salon, the Discovery Institute is not quitting -- preferring now to "teach the controversy," as part of their ongoing attack on naturalism. [Previously 1 2]
posted by McLir on Nov 13, 2007 - 193 comments

The biggest employer of foreign nationals in Japan BUSTO?

Nova eikaiwa is the biggest foreign language school in Japan, teaching predominantly English through a network of over 600 branches across the county and employing over 7,000 foreign nationals. After adverse rulings to a number of complaints regarding Nova's refund policy, the Japanese Government imposed a 6 month ban from July to prevent the company from selling large lesson packages to students. The company has experienced a severe downturn in cashflow as a result and there are reports of late payment to Japanese staff and suppliers in the last two months. Foreign teachers were unaffected until salary payments for the 15th September were paid late, and more senior teachers have not yet been paid. Despite not being paid, many staff face a tough decision: quit, or continue to show up to work in the knowledge that if the company goes bankrupt they are eligible for unemployment benefits. Despite this, CEO Nozomu Sahashi declared last Friday "The dark clouds that have been hanging heavily over us will be cast aside... I said previously 'the darkest time is before the dawn,' and finally the first light of dawn can be seen". Five days later and some teachers are still waiting to be paid.
posted by cwhitfcd on Sep 25, 2007 - 20 comments

Clifford Stoll

Cliff Stoll [Wiki] first became known [ram] as the astronomer who caught a spy/hacker. His book on this adventure, "The Cuckoo's Egg" [PDF] was featured on a 1990 Nova [1 2 3 4 5 6, YouTube, with most of the re-enactments performed by the real-life people.] Since the mid 90's he has been an outspoken critic of high-tech hype. 1996 C-Span presentation [GVid.] for "Silicon Snake Oil." 2004 audio interview [ram] for "High-Tech Heretic." Stoll has written Scientific American articles on the Curta calculator [PDF scans] and the slide rule. For several years, Stoll has also been making and selling hand-blown glass Klein bottles. (Calibrations available.) [Previously 1 2 3 4]
posted by McLir on Sep 3, 2007 - 33 comments

How to Sequence a Genome

How to Sequence a Genome [Flash. H/T to Jay]. Visualization of the process of genetic sequencing. Posted on the Nova website in conjunction with their show, Cracking the Code of Life, hosted by Robert Krulwich [Wiki].
posted by McLir on Aug 23, 2007 - 14 comments

See a nova in Scorpius

"A Naked-Eye Nova in Scorpius" - Scorpius, the constellation home to M4, has a nova visible to the naked eye. Skytonight.com has a cool javascript almanac for you to see when it will be most visible for where you live.
posted by frecklefaerie on Feb 19, 2007 - 7 comments

The instrument, guitar...

Sinatra & Jobim. 6 minutes of Bossa Nova beauty, for your viewing pleasure. (Youtube link)
posted by Chrischris on May 12, 2006 - 45 comments

oook, indeed

The past can be a fascinating place. An Anthropologist by training and finder of interesting things by avocation, Hugh Blackmer, began rescuing old photos from antique shops on Nova Scotia (the former Acadia) several decades ago. He's now posting them on-line for his Nova Scotia Faces project. He's using Flickr and experimenting with a wiki. He's finding some wonderful old moments.
posted by mmahaffie on Jan 12, 2006 - 16 comments

Ride the Lightning

Nova Science Now recently ran a segment on lightning (quicktime, real, and windows video here). I figured that subject was over and done with shortly after Franklin flew a kite, but it turns out we don't really know exactly what causes a bolt to start. The coolest part of the segment was these researchers in Florida. Scientists know how hard it was to observe, monitor, and even find lightning bolts, so these guys built their own rig. High-powered model rockets attached to a couple thousand feet of wire, which is grounded to larger metal structures on the ground. The result? Shoot a rocket into a storm cloud and you get instant lightning you can count on, measure, and control.
posted by mathowie on Oct 22, 2005 - 30 comments

OH! Canada

Canada, a 13+ link whistlestop glance at something from all the provinces and territories...Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, NWT, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario, PEI, Quebec, Saskatewan, Yukon. Not to mention the talk about Turks and Caicos?
posted by edgeways on Feb 15, 2005 - 28 comments

StringThread

The elegant universe. A 3 hour PBS NOVA documentary on string theory [in 24 ~5-10 minute chunks of real player or quick time video]. Welcome to the 11th dimension.
posted by srboisvert on Nov 14, 2003 - 18 comments

of theory

“The string theorists have a theory that appears to be consistent and is very beautiful, and I don’t understand it.” Nova invites Brian Greene to explain everything with the superstring.
posted by the fire you left me on Oct 27, 2003 - 12 comments

The Inconstant Moon

The Inconstant Moon is dedicated to our nearest neighbor. Explore the moon with the Selenographica. Also, this Tuesday, Nova will re-broadcast To the Moon, the story of the the science and engineering behind mans trip to the moon. Its been 100 years since Melies' dream. Will the U.S. return? Or will someone else?
posted by vacapinta on Jun 23, 2002 - 7 comments

Why the towers fell.

Why the towers fell. PBS is airing a special episode of Nova about the science behind while the World Trade Center towers collapse. Nova's reputation for converting esoteric science & engineering into understandable explanations for the layman should make the show something to watch. 7PM EDT/PDT on most PBS stations. Set your Tivos.
posted by Argyle on Apr 30, 2002 - 23 comments

Last week I was watching a Nova program on PBS called 'Cracking the Code of Life', which brought to my attention a disturbing fact about the process of mapping the Human Genome; private companies have applied for patents for gene sequences that they've mapped. Many of these patents were applied for before the government began the Human Genome Project. Although the patent office has put these applications on hold until it figures out what to do with them, many drug companies an researchers won't work with a gene sequence if there is a patent application outstanding. You can get involved yourself by petitioning against patents on life.
posted by Sal Amander on May 1, 2001 - 22 comments

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