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On 20 April

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51 Feedburner Blogs NASA's Next Stop: A Space Station Orbiting The Moon
The International Space Station is entering its twilight years. As such, NASA is making plans for the space station of the future ? one that would orbit the moon.This new lunar outpost will be smaller and more remote than the ISS ? orbing beyond Earth's protective magnetic field. And the station's goal would be to serve as a transit hub for deep space missions and exploration past low-Earth orbit, while continuing all the science that can be done in zero gravity. It would also be within
Tuesday, 13 March 2018
52 FeedBurner Technology New Brain Scanner Fits Right Atop the Head
When it comes to observing the inner workings of our brains, there are a few ways we can do it. But, for most, bulky machines and carefully controlled environments are the norm. The traditional trade-off researchers face for a glimpse inside the mind is a mind that's constrained in some fairly unnatural ways. It can make doing research on how the brain works during basic human activities difficult.Researchers from the U.K., however, have found a better way to get inside our heads. They'v
Wednesday, 21 March 2018
53 Feedburner Blogs No One Knows How Long the U.S. Coastline Is
How long is the U.S. coastline? It's a straightforward question, and one that's important for scientists and government agencies alike. The U.S. Geological Survey could give you an answer, too, but I'm going to tell you right now that it's wrong.In fact, no one could give you the right answer, and if you look around, you'll find a number of estimations that differ by seemingly improbable amounts. One government report lists the number as 12,383 miles. The same report admits that a differ
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54 Feedburner Blogs One Simple Trick To Improve Credibility
It's intuitive: We hear a message, think about it, and decide whether or not we believe it. We have to do it whenever we get a new piece of information in our lives, from politics to the news to gossip, so you'd think we'd be good at it by now.But studies constantly show that our squishy human brains don't make it quite so easy. Presenting information in different ways ? whether there's a photo included, or changing the colors of the words ? affects our interpretation of it, without our
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55 Feedburner Blogs Our Ancestors Got High, Too
The tales we tell ? from Homer and Genesis to your friend's ninth recounting of that epic rave last summer ? are rich with drug use. But studies show our ancestors were chewing, brewing and blazing long before they started to record their intoxicated escapades.Virtually all human societies use mind-altering substances. What's more, about 90 percent give drug-induced altered states of consciousness a role in their fundamental belief systems, according to a survey of 488 modern societies.
Monday, 09 April 2018
56 Feedburner Blogs Over 100 New Hair Color Genes Help Untangle A Confusing Trait
It's easy to tell what color someone's hair is, but figuring out the genetics behind how it got that way is anything but simple.A new study from a team of international researchers analyzing 300,000 people of European descent finds more than 100 new genes related to hair color in some way. But even with their newfound knowledge, the researchers have only partial success predicting hair color based solely on genes. It's a testament to the knotty genetics of pigmentation, but their researc
Monday, 16 April 2018
57 Feedburner Blogs Phew! Researchers Aren't Torturing Octopuses
Some cephalopod researchers have another job title: Octopus anesthesiologist.It sounds far-fetched, but it's an important task. Octopuses, and cephalopods in general, are the smartest invertebrates, and their complex, unique central nervous systems are studied by researchers interested in everything from motor control to visual processing to cognition itself. But that kind of research often involves invasive techniques that could cause the creatures significant pain.Can You Feel It?A
Friday, 06 April 2018
58 FeedBurner Technology Rediscovered US Carrier Sank in Historic WWII Duel
When the aircraft carrier USS Lexington sank beneath the surface of the Coral Sea, it represented a significant casualty of history's first clash between carriers during World War II. 76 years later, an expedition led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen announced that it had rediscovered wreckage from the carrier known as "Lady Lex" lying on the seafloor about 500 miles off the eastern coast of Australia.The loss of the USS Lexington took place during the Battle of Coral Sea: a battle tha
Monday, 19 March 2018
59 Feedburner Blogs Should We Worry About Computer Algorithms' 'Mental Health'?
Is my car hallucinating? Is the algorithm that runs the police surveillance system in my city paranoid? Marvin the android in Douglas Adams's Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy had a pain in all the diodes down his left-hand side. Is that how my toaster feels?This all sounds ludicrous until we realize that our algorithms are increasingly being made in our own image. As we've learned more about our own brains, we've enlisted that knowledge to create algorithmic versions of ourselves. These a
Monday, 26 March 2018
60 Feedburner Blogs Solar Silliness: The Heart-Sun Connection
On Twitter, I learned about a curious new paper in Scientific Reports: Long-Term Study of Heart Rate Variability Responses to Changes in the Solar and Geomagnetic Environment by Abdullah Alabdulgader and colleagues.According to this article, the human heart "responds to changes in geomagnetic and solar activity". This paper claims that things like solar flares, cosmic rays and sunspots affect the beating of our hearts.Spoiler warning: I don't think this is true. In fact, I think the
Thursday, 22 March 2018
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