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Last Build Date: Wed, 01 Mar 2017 17:13:38 +0000


Prehistoric artists 38 kya used Van Gogh-type technique

Wed, 01 Mar 2017 17:13:38 +0000

From Laura Geggel at LiveScience: Archaeologists found 16 limestone tablets dating to the Aurignacian period, named for the first known people to settle in Europe. The tablets were engraved with pictures of horses, mammoths and aurochs (extinct wild cows). Most notably, the pictures were drawn using a series of dots and lines — or as […]

Big squawks over bird speciation?

Wed, 01 Mar 2017 16:42:21 +0000

From Andrew Jenner at Atlantic: In July 2008, an American ornithologist named Bret Whitney was researching antbirds in the Brazilian Amazon when he heard a curious bird song. The sound, to his expert ear, clearly belonged a Striolated Puffbird––a big, streaky creature that looks like an owl crossed with a kingfisher. But it also had […]

Is there a “crisis” in cosmology or does it merely face “challenges”?

Wed, 01 Mar 2017 16:03:34 +0000

For the crisis, go here. For the “challenges,” see Anna Ijjas, Paul J. Steinhardt, and Abraham Loeb at Scientific American: The latest astrophysical measurements, combined with theoretical problems, cast doubt on the long-cherished inflationary theory of the early cosmos and suggest we need new ideas. (paywall) More. We remember when inflation was beyond dispute. It […]

Origin of life: Horizontal gene transfer “negligible” and endosymbiosis “wrong” as factors in earliest known life?

Tue, 28 Feb 2017 17:32:14 +0000

From science writer Suzan Mazur, author of Paradigm Shifters, continuing her interview at Huffington Post with Swedish deep evolution investigators Charles Kurland and Ajith Harish regarding … their central position on deep evolution, which is that the most recent universal common ancestor (MRUCA) is complex not a simple bacteria and “is the root of eukaryote and […]

Origin of life: We are all descended from a “complex” ancestor?

Tue, 28 Feb 2017 16:24:13 +0000

From science writer Suzan Mazur, author of Paradigm Shifters, at Huffington Post: I recently had a three-way phone conversation with Swedish deep evolution investigators Charles Kurland and Ajith Harish about their phylogenomic Tree of Life (ToL) based on protein structure, which shows that we are descended from a “complex” ancestor — MRUCA (most recent universal […]

RNA self-editing: “It sounds simple, but in real life it was really complicated”

Tue, 28 Feb 2017 15:06:27 +0000

From Kelly Rae Chi at Nature: n 2004, oncologist Gideon Rechavi at Tel Aviv University in Israel and his colleagues compared all the human genomic DNA sequences then available with their corresponding messenger RNAs — the molecules that carry the information needed to make a protein from a gene. They were looking for signs that […]

Education PhD candidate: Objectivity in science is sexist.

Tue, 28 Feb 2017 13:40:12 +0000

From Joy Pullmann at Federalist: College science classes are hostile to women and minorities because they use the scientific method, which assumes people can find reliable truths about the natural world through careful and sustained experimentation, concludes a recent dissertation by a doctoral candidate at the University of North Dakota. Laura Parson, a student in […]

Blowing up mathematics

Mon, 27 Feb 2017 22:11:50 +0000

From Jordana Cepelewicz at Nautilus, on mathematician Harvey Friedman: The foundations of mathematics is also a field—in stark contrast to the casual and light tone of Friedman’s emails—that has been in crisis for nearly a century. In 1931, the Austrian mathematician and philosopher Kurt Gödel proved that any logical system adequate to develop basic arithmetic […]

Do true believers hold back society?

Mon, 27 Feb 2017 21:45:35 +0000

An unexpectedly level-headed discussion from Tom Mahony at RealClearScience: Ironically, true believers often moralize about the importance of facts and insist they’re the only ones who are “reality based.” However, in practice, they confuse facts with assumptions, beliefs, conjecture, and opinion. If you take an incorrect assumption, assume it as fact, and extrapolate from that […]

Health sciences: But just what IS a medical myth?

Mon, 27 Feb 2017 20:26:11 +0000

From Robin Nixon, Elizabeth Peterson and Karen Rowan (October 2016) at LiveScience: 25 Medical Myths that Just Won’t Go Away Despite what you may have heard, drinking eight glasses of water a day isn’t the key to good health. Also, neglecting to wear a coat on a cold day won’t make you sick. And — […]