Selected Sci-News Items  May 11- May 17, 2019
 
General Interest    Cosmos    Innovation    Health    Nature    Environment    Climate

great resource:   Hapgood's Weekly List of Boston-Area Science Events




GENERAL INTEREST

Cosmos, May 16, 2019
A shift from physical artIfact to natural constant marks a huge shake-up in how the world defines units of measurement.

New York Times, May 09, 2019
The insects frequently found in your backyard appear to be the first invertebrate known to be capable of the skill of transitive inference.

NPR/Hidden Brain, May 09, 2019  (w/audio)
How we rely on people we trust to shape our beliefs, and why emotion can be more powerful than facts.

Quanta, May 14, 2019
In the late 1940s, Richard Feynman invented a visual tool for simplifying particle calculations that forever changed theoretical physics.

The Atlantic, May 09, 2019
A new report says that the world subsidized fossil fuels by $5.2 trillion in just one year. But that calculation is less tidy than it seems.

Casting a Wide Net
Symmetry, May 14, 2019
In their quest to discover physics beyond the Standard Model, physicists weigh the pros and cons of different search strategies.


COSMOS

Space, May 14, 2019
It may sound like the stuff of science fiction, but scientists have already detected a time warp. But what does this mean?

Scientific American, May 07, 2019 (George Greenstein)
A longtime professor of astronomy continues to wrestle with the strangeness of it all

The Building Blocks for Astronomically Literate Citizens
Phys.Org, May 13, 2019
Throughout history, astronomy has revolutionized the way humankind sees its place in the universe, from knowing only a handful of planets in the solar system, to the billions of galaxies
currently known. But to what extent has this knowledge been integrated into society?

The Guardian, May 12, 2019
Proposal calls for wilderness protection as startup space miners look to the stars.

Black, Hot Ice May Be Nature's Most Common Form of Water
Quanta, May 08, 2019
A new experiment confirms the existence of "superionic ice," a bizarre form of water that might comprise the bulk of giant icy planets throughout the universe.


INNOVATION

Walk Inside a Plant Cell or Glide Over a Coral Reef: Three Ways Virtual Reality Is Revolutionizing Teaching
The Conversation, May 13, 2019
It's reasonable to approach VR with a degree of scepticism, but here are three ways in which VR can transform the way we learn.

Science Daily, May 15, 2019
A new invention uses magnets to record computer data which consume virtually zero energy, solving the dilemma of how to create faster data processing speeds without high energy costs.

Hakai, May 14, 2019
In Seattle, Singapore, and other waterfront cities around the world, engineers are creating life-enhancing designs to encourage marine biodiversity.

The Search for New Geologic Sources of Lithium Could Power a Clean Future 
Science News, May 07, 2019
There's a lot to learn about where and how to mine the lightest metal on the periodic table.

New York Times, May 10, 2019
This pilot program reflects an effort by medical professionals around the world to give patients alternatives to drugs, in order to avoid side effects and improve cost efficiency.

Cosmos, May 13, 2019
The computer mouse is a ubiquitous device, but who actually invented it is the subject of considerable debate.


HEALTH 

Washington Post, May 12, 2019
Researchers are studying the itch-scratch cycle, trying to unravel the mysteries of what makes people itch, then scratch - and keep scratching.

Nature, May 13, 2019
Many environmental-health researchers see the EPA's decision to cut funding for the children's centers as part of a push by President Donald Trump's administration to undermine science
at the agency, which is responsible for the safety of US air and water.

New Yorker, May 06, 2019
Research shows that loud sound can have a significant impact on human health, as well as doing devastating damage to ecosystems.

Eat Food. All the Time. Mostly Junk.
The Atlantic, June 2019 issue
How the "food revolution" turned us into snackers, guaranteeing the demise of healthy home cooking.

Americans Need Generic Drugs. But Can They Trust Them?
New York Times, May 11, 2019
The fake quality-control data, bird infestations and toxic impurities at the overseas plants that could be making your medication.


NATURE

New York Times, May 13, 2019
Scientists find that whiskey's smokiness, the smell of beets and lily of the valley perfume can be utterly different depending on your genetic wiring.

Nature, May 14, 2019
Mysterious groups of archaea - named after Loki and other Norse myths - are stirring debate about the origin of complex creatures, including humans.

National Geographic, June 2019 issue
Captive wild animal encounters are hugely popular, thanks partly to social media. But our investigation shows many creatures lead dismal lives.

Aeon, May 15, 2019
It ignited life on Earth, propelled evolution, and now signals climate change. Yet what sparks lightning remains a mystery.

Cosmos, May 11, 2019
Photos record abundant wildlife in all areas of the radioactive exclusion zone.


ENVIRONMENT 

Deutsche Welle, May 10, 2019
After 12 days of negotiations under the auspices of the United Nations, countries have agreed to treat plastic as hazardous waste.Germany is considering a ban that would go even further.

Science, May 10, 2019
As a key component of cement, asphalt, and glass, sand is integral to every aspect of our lives.  The U.N. report recommends encouraging ways of reducing demand for new sand and discouraging the harmful environmental impacts of sand mining.

Yale Environment 360, May 09, 2019
This project could be a model for other places seeking to make coastal wetlands more resilient to rising seas and worsening storms.

The Guardian, May 07, 2019
Exploitation and predatory pricing drove the transformation of the US beef industry - and created the model for modern agribusiness.

Kaiser Health News, May 09, 2019
Several studies have linked prenatal exposure of chlorpyrifos to lower birth weights, lower IQs, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and autism symptoms in children.


CLIMATE 

The Guardian, May 08, 2019
Out of 23 big countries, only Saudi Arabia and Indonesia had higher proportion of doubters.

Scientific American, May 12, 2019
The latest climate models are giving disturbing answers.

The Conversation, May 13, 2019
Coastal conditions in the Arctic are changing dramatically and the region is warming faster than the rest of the world, but these changes could actually be good for kelp.

New Yorker, May 13, 2019 (Elizabeth Kolbert)
People easily forget "last of" stories about individual species, but the loss of nature also threatens our existence.

The Guardian, May 16, 2019
New research shows affected areas are losing ice five times faster than in the 1990s, with more than 100m of thickness gone in some places.


 
 
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