3691 posts tagged with SCIENCE.
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Testing Nexus on 'NIMH' mice

Nanowire Mesh Monitors Mouse Brains - "Injectable 'neural lace'* brain-computer interface works in mice for months at a time." (via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Aug 30, 2016 - 26 comments

Sad Face

Can smiling make you happier? Maybe not. We have no idea. ... The basic finding of Strack’s research—that a facial expression can change your feelings even if you don’t know that you’re making it—has now been reproduced, at least conceptually, many, many times. ... In recent years, it has even formed the basis for the treatment of mental illness. An idea that Strack himself had scoffed at in the 1980s now is taken very seriously: Several recent, randomized clinical trials found that injecting patients’ faces with Botox to make their “frown lines” go away also helped them to recover from depression. [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna on Aug 29, 2016 - 19 comments

A Swarm of Controversy

In their struggle for survival against killer mites, bees get an unlikely ally: Monsanto. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Aug 29, 2016 - 10 comments

It's science, not mind-control!

The High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) is an Alaska-based research facility that studies an energetic and active region of the upper atmosphere. It is a group of high-frequency radio transmitters that send a focused beam of radio-wave energy into the aurora zone. Last year, instead of shutting it down, the US Military sold HAARP to the University of Alaska Fairbanks . But conspiracy theories abound: for example, HAARP caused the Haiti earthquake, or controls the weather” This weekend, HAARP's new owner will hold an open house to prove the facility 'is not capable of mind control’
posted by leahwrenn on Aug 24, 2016 - 64 comments

Here, we see a mefite in her natural habitat!

How natural are nature documentaries?
posted by ChuraChura on Aug 20, 2016 - 55 comments

Somewhere Between A Bottle Of Nail Polish And A Can Of Soda

FiveThirtyEight's "Science Questions from a Toddler" series aims to "use the curiosity of kids ages 5 and younger as a jumping-off point to investigate the scientific wonders that adults don’t even think to ask about. The answers are for adults, but they wouldn’t be possible without the wonder only a child can bring." Their most recent article is "How Big is a Fart?" [more inside]
posted by chainsofreedom on Aug 17, 2016 - 39 comments

Pac animal

World-record-holding balloon fiend Twinkie hunts down ghosts and balloons (but mostly balloons) in Pac-Dog
posted by a lungful of dragon on Aug 17, 2016 - 11 comments

"I wanted to try something a little bit different."

Generating fantasy maps - source code
posted by a lungful of dragon on Aug 16, 2016 - 30 comments

get back to the sponges

The NOAA ship Okeanos Explorer is currently livestreaming its exploratin of the uncharted deep sea ecosystems and seafloor the Wake Atoll Unit of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument. Tune in between 0830 and 1630 Fiji time for coverage; come for the corals, stay for the scientist banter. (Previous voyages from 2013 and 2014.)
posted by fight or flight on Aug 15, 2016 - 7 comments

Everything is Fucked: The Syllabus

PSY 607: Everything is Fucked. What does it mean, in science, for something to be fucked? Fucked needs to mean more than that something is complicated or must be undertaken with thought and care, as that would be trivially true of everything in science. In this class we will go a step further and say that something is fucked if it presents hard conceptual challenges to which implementable, real-world solutions for working scientists are either not available or routinely ignored in practice. [more inside]
posted by srboisvert on Aug 12, 2016 - 14 comments

Long in the Tooth

"She was born during the reign of James I, was a youngster when René Descartes set out his rules of thought and the great fire of London raged, saw out her adolescent years as George II ascended the throne, reached adulthood around the time that the American revolution kicked off, and lived through two world wars. Living to an estimated age of nearly 400 years, a female Greenland shark has set a new record for longevity, scientists have revealed." [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Aug 11, 2016 - 32 comments

You Won't Believe What Aliens Have Done In The Outer Solar System!

There's something weird going on beyond Neptune - A mysterious object has been discovered with an inexplicable orbit.
posted by marienbad on Aug 11, 2016 - 53 comments

Talk to a physicist. Call me on Skype. $50 per 20 minutes.

What I learned as a hired consultant to autodidact physicists My clients read way too much into pictures, measuring every angle, scrutinising every colour, counting every dash. Illustrators should be more careful to point out what is relevant information and what is artistic freedom.
But the most important lesson I’ve learned is that journalists are so successful at making physics seem not so complicated that many readers come away with the impression that they can easily do it themselves. How can we blame them for not knowing what it takes if we never tell them?

posted by CrystalDave on Aug 11, 2016 - 48 comments

...detected human presence in the Americas as early as 14,700 years ago.

How Did People Migrate to the Americas? Bison DNA Helps Chart the Way [The New York Times] “Two teams of scientists have succeeded in dating the opening of the gateway to America, only to disagree over whether the Clovis people — one of the first groups from Siberia to reach the Americas — ever used the gateway to gain access to the New World.” [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Aug 10, 2016 - 12 comments

No surprises for Table Tennis

A Visual History of Which Countries Have Dominated the Summer Olympics
posted by a lungful of dragon on Aug 10, 2016 - 31 comments

Genetic Engineering Will Change Everything Forever – CRISPR

Designer babies, the end of diseases, genetically modified humans that never age. Outrageous things that used to be science fiction are suddenly becoming reality. The only thing we know for sure is that things will change irreversibly. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Aug 10, 2016 - 55 comments

Smart Dust Is Here

Engineers Create The First Dust-Sized Wireless Sensors That Can Be Implanted Into The Human Body. Relevant paper here.
posted by StrikeTheViol on Aug 6, 2016 - 70 comments

VDAP turns 30

30 Years Saving Lives from Volcanoes VDAP was established in 1986 in response to the tragic eruption of the Nevado del Ruiz volcano in Colombia that killed more than 23,000 people. Recognizing that the tragedy could have been averted with assistance before the eruption, the USGS and USAID/OFDA formed VDAP.
posted by Michele in California on Aug 2, 2016 - 4 comments

Cathedrals inside you

Vaults are large, barrel shaped protein complexes. Found in most eukaryotic cells, their exact function is currently unknown. [more inside]
posted by lucidium on Aug 1, 2016 - 17 comments

Daddy can you multiply triples?

A group of Science YouTubers got together to perform a tribute to a scientist Hamilton, in the style of his political musical namesake.
posted by divabat on Aug 1, 2016 - 14 comments

Photosynthetic Solar Cells

Breakthrough solar cell captures CO2 and sunlight, produces burnable fuel “The new solar cell is not photovoltaic — it’s photosynthetic”
posted by Michele in California on Jul 31, 2016 - 47 comments

So, the unknowable kicks in

Logic hacking - "Writing shorter and shorter computer programs for which it's unknowable whether these programs run forever, or stop... the winner of the Busy Beaver Game for N-state Turing machines becomes unknowable using ordinary math - somewhere between N = 5 and N = 1919." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jul 30, 2016 - 17 comments

Ice Bucket Challenge funds ALS Breakthrough

Want some good news for terrible times? It seems the Ice Bucket Challenge viral fundraiser for ALS research has yielded identification of a common gene amongst 15,000 ALS patients. It's still early days for this research, but it's progress: progress funded as the result of a viral phenomenon.
posted by hippybear on Jul 27, 2016 - 27 comments

Meet Luca, the Ancestor of All Living Things

Genes that do the same thing in a human and a mouse are generally related by common descent from an ancestral gene in the first mammal. So by comparing their sequence of DNA letters, genes can be arranged in evolutionary family trees, a property that enabled Dr. Martin and his colleagues to assign the six million genes to a much smaller number of gene families. Of these, only 355 met their criteria for having probably originated in Luca, the joint ancestor of bacteria and archaea.
Meet Luca, the Ancestor of All Living Things [more inside]
posted by y2karl on Jul 26, 2016 - 36 comments

Still can't remove the male gaze, though

Thanks to science, you can now change the way a person gazes in a photo in a not at all totally creepy or derpy way.
posted by Foci for Analysis on Jul 26, 2016 - 38 comments

Rubber Johnny II: Electric Boogaloo

Meet Graham, an interactive sculpture developed by a trauma surgeon, a crash investigation expert and a Melbourne artist to show what humans might look like, if they had evolved features to withstand car crashes (via)
posted by a lungful of dragon on Jul 22, 2016 - 25 comments

"That was the eureka moment."

Biology textbooks tell us that lichens are alliances between two organisms—a fungus and an alga. They are wrong.
posted by komara on Jul 22, 2016 - 39 comments

Figures

ABC (potentially NSFW, due to CGI butts) by Alan Warburton (previously), as inspired by the work of Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland (kinda previously)
posted by a lungful of dragon on Jul 19, 2016 - 5 comments

The seven biggest problems facing science, according to scientists

In the past several years, many scientists have become afflicted with a serious case of doubt — doubt in the very institution of science... So we sent scientists a survey asking this simple question: If you could change one thing about how science works today, what would it be and why? We heard back from 270 scientists all over the world, including graduate students, senior professors, laboratory heads, and Fields Medalists. They told us that, in a variety of ways, their careers are being hijacked by perverse incentives. The result is bad science.
posted by forza on Jul 14, 2016 - 39 comments

Wipeout

Drone racingEpic drone race at night | Star Wars-style FPV racing | Drone racing dreams
posted by a lungful of dragon on Jul 14, 2016 - 9 comments

The least suitable species for a pet? Screaming Hairy Armadillo

Which mammal species are suitable to be kept as pets? [more inside]
posted by not_the_water on Jul 12, 2016 - 43 comments

Why 'Tough' Treatment Doesn't Help Drug Addicts

Maia Szalavitz [mefi's own maias] talks about her new book, Unbroken Brain: A Revolutionary New Way of Understanding Addiction on Fresh Air with Terry Gross (transcript) - "We have this idea that if we are just cruel enough and mean enough and tough enough to people with addiction, that they will suddenly wake up and stop, and that is not the case."
posted by kliuless on Jul 11, 2016 - 55 comments

All they need to know is this is the coolest thing they'll see all year

This robot stingray is powered by genetically engineered rat heart cells. It has an elastomer body and a stiff gold skeleton. Rat heart cells are grown in a specific pattern on the underside, and are activated by pulses of light -- allowing the robot to be remote controlled as it navigates through a liquid with suspended nutrients that keep the cells alive. More details from Science. Even Popular Mechanics doesn't need to do much sensationalizing to this story.
posted by cubby on Jul 7, 2016 - 12 comments

This represents a fundamental failure of CIHR’s primary mandate

The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) (previously) administers operating grants to researchers in areas of basic, clinical, and population health research. Recent changes to the way CIHR reviews and awards grants have many scientists warning that "there is little hope that the best ideas and projects will be funded" and calling for a rollback of the changes. [more inside]
posted by quaking fajita on Jul 6, 2016 - 7 comments

If you've got the data, you have got to publish it.

Early in his career cardiologist Peter Wilmshurst was offered several years salary to sit on bad data. He explains to Spiegel Online why he declined:
The patients that took part in our research did this on the expectation that their data would be used. In this study the participants had had cardiac catheterization. They had risked their lives for the study! So you cannot hush up the results!
[more inside] posted by mark k on Jul 5, 2016 - 31 comments

The Curb at Rose and Prospect

As you can see, the corner that sits on the North American plate has slid past the section of the curb that sits on the Pacific plate. When the concrete was poured, the sidewalk was even with the curb! [more inside]
posted by Slap*Happy on Jul 5, 2016 - 28 comments

Six Easy Pieces, 19th century edition

The translation of science into laypeople's terms is now a well-established part of our culture; so is the idea that we should make science exciting for children. Michael Faraday (d. 1867) figured this out earlier than most; like Richard Feynman, he was not only a world-class researcher, but a world-class educator. The Royal Institution Christmas Lectures (previously) he initiated remain an annual tradition, almost two centuries years later. Recently, Bill Hammack (previously) created a beautiful, verbatim re-enactment of one of Faraday's most simple and elegant series of lectures on The Chemical History of a Candle, together with a series of commentary videos (though the lectures themselves remain remarkably clear).
posted by Dr and Mrs Eaves on Jul 4, 2016 - 12 comments

Protozoan Pac-Man

Scientists have created a microscopic, real life-or-death version of Pac-Man
posted by prize bull octorok on Jul 4, 2016 - 13 comments

A plate of Björk and beans

In 1997, Björk interviewed musicians Alasdair Malloy, Mika Vainio, Tommi Grönlund, and Arvo Pärt in a two-part BBC documentary entitled Modern Minimalists - part I | part II
posted by a lungful of dragon on Jun 28, 2016 - 3 comments

Caltech glassblower's retirement has scientists sighing

Caltech glassblower's retirement has scientists sighing (LATimes) “He’s a somewhat dying breed,” said Sarah Reisman, who relied on Gerhart to create 20 maze-like contraptions for her synthetic organic chemistry lab. “There just aren't as many scientific glassblowers anymore, and certainly not ones that have Rick’s level of experience. Even a fraction of that experience, I think, just isn't out there.”
posted by CrystalDave on Jun 27, 2016 - 71 comments

The lasting legacy of the "rocket girls" of JPL

California-based Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has been central to the US missile and rocket development and operations for decades, and from the beginning that technology's success rested on a corps of expert mathematicians, people known as computers. And from the beginning they were all women, in a time when such opportunities were few and far between. You can find pictures of them, but names have not been well-recorded ... until now. Nathalia Holt found many of those women and wrote about their experiences in her book, Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jun 15, 2016 - 22 comments

“I’m 60 years old and I can’t remember anything like this.”

We’re in for a major peach shortage in the Northeast this summer
posted by a lungful of dragon on Jun 13, 2016 - 50 comments

‘Chemophobia’ is irrational, harmful – and hard to break

"We all feel a profound connection with the natural world. E O Wilson called this sensation biophilia: ‘the urge to affiliate with other forms of life’. That sense of connection brings great emotional satisfaction. It can decrease levels of anger, anxiety and pain. It has undoubtedly helped our species to survive, since we are fundamentally dependent on our surrounding environment and ecosystem. But lately biophilia has spawned an extreme variant: chemophobia, a reflexive rejection of modern synthetic chemicals."
It has become conventional wisdom among chemists that “chemophobia” is the root of many people’s trepidation about chemicals. Framing the issue as an irrational fear may not be the best way to improve chemicals’ public image, however.
[more inside] posted by Blasdelb on Jun 13, 2016 - 122 comments

Ten Degrees Above Average

Alaska is Having Its Hottest Year Since Records Began - "After a spring that was a full ten degrees hotter than normal, the northern state is on track for the most sweltering year on record." (via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jun 11, 2016 - 82 comments

I'm not crazy, you are!

Oops. In 2012 a study was published that linked liberalism with social desirability, and conservatism with psychosis. A series of papers were published, some in high profile outlets. Now, they have been retracted. Why? The codings in the data were reversed--liberals were coded as conservatives, and vice-versa. [more inside]
posted by MisantropicPainforest on Jun 11, 2016 - 34 comments

Stop dithering and start dithering

Image Dithering: Eleven Algorithms and Source Code
posted by a lungful of dragon on Jun 10, 2016 - 25 comments

“equally efficient in the visualisation of hidden medieval inks,”

X-Rays Reveal 1,300-Year-Old Writings Inside Later Bookbindings [The Guardian] The words of the 8th-century Saint Bede are among those that have been found by detecting iron, copper and zinc – constituents of medieval ink. Medieval manuscripts that have been hidden from view for centuries could reveal their secrets for the first time, thanks to new technology. Dutch scientists and other academics are using an x-ray technique to read fragments of manuscripts that have been reused as bookbindings and which cannot be deciphered with the naked eye. After the middle ages manuscripts were recycled, with pages pasted inside bindings to strengthen them. Those fragments may be the unique remains of certain works.
posted by Fizz on Jun 5, 2016 - 13 comments

Periodically cool

Return of the Cicadas is a short film by Samuel Orr about the insects' (surprisingly beautiful) 17-year lifespans. [more inside]
posted by Gymnopedist on Jun 3, 2016 - 18 comments

New mysteries. New day. Fresh doughnuts.

Let these chipper YouTube science vids fill you with existential terror. Popular YouTube education channels CGP Grey and Kurzgesagt teamed up to produce a pair of videos designed to cause you to question everything about your existence.
posted by Johnny Wallflower on Jun 3, 2016 - 24 comments

Slashed Beauties

The anatomical Venus re-examined. “One of the things that makes the Venus so hard for us to understand is that we’ve now divided up all those things in ways that wasn’t divided in the time that it was made... We have this division between art and science, and between religion and medicine, that didn’t exist at that time.” (Photos of nude wax anatomical models that may be NSFW or disturbing to some.)
posted by merriment on Jun 2, 2016 - 9 comments

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