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60-Second Science

Leading science journalists provide a daily minute commentary on some of the most interesting developments in the world of science. For a full-length, weekly podcast you can subscribe to Science Talk: The Podcast of Scientific American . To view all of ou


Supermarket Snacking Boosts Sales

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 21:00:00 -0500

Noshing while shopping convinces consumers to buy the featured product more often than does simply seeing end-of-aisle displays. Karen Hopkin reports.

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Something Clicks for Dolphin Identification

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 21:48:00 -0500

Machine-learning algorithms teased seven distinct dolphin clicking patterns from a library of more than 50 million clicks, identifying one species by sound alone. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Nutrition Guidelines Healthy for the Planet, Too

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 15:55:00 -0500

Following dietary guidelines would mean eating less meat and dairy—and fewer calories overall—reducing greenhouse gases and other pollution. Julia Rosen reports.

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Invading Beavers Turn Tundra to Ponds

Mon, 11 Dec 2017 15:58:00 -0500

New beaver ponds in the Arctic may contribute to the destruction of the permafrost that holds that landscape together.  

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Sharks Rule the Reef's Underwater Food Chain

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 15:00:00 -0500

When sharks prowl shallow waters, fish quit foraging and hide—sparing seaweed from being grazed in those areas. Jason G. Goldman reports.

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Ancient Women Had Awesome Arms

Sat, 9 Dec 2017 23:42:00 -0500

For thousands of years, women in agricultural societies seem to have had arms stronger than members of modern rowing teams.  

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Invasive Frogs Don't Bug Hawaiian Birds

Fri, 8 Dec 2017 17:15:00 -0500

Coquí frogs are invasive species in Hawaii. But they don’t seem to bug the islands’ native and nonnative birds. Jason G. Goldman reports.

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How Hospitals Can Dampen the Decibels

Thu, 7 Dec 2017 20:45:00 -0500

Hospitals consistently score low on quietness surveys. An acoustician suggests a few ways hospitals could keep the peace and quiet. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Smarter Management Means More Inventions Get to Market

Wed, 6 Dec 2017 15:40:00 -0500

Rosemarie Truman, CEO of the Center for Advancing Innovation, says a better system of governance for federally funded inventions could lead to many more good ones becoming commercialized.  

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Computers Learn to Use Sound to Find Ships

Tue, 5 Dec 2017 22:48:00 -0500

Researchers trained machine-learning algorithms to pinpoint the location of a cargo ship simply by eavesdropping on the sound of its passing. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Yeti Claims Don't Bear Up

Sun, 3 Dec 2017 23:57:00 -0500

Analysis of alleged yeti samples found them to be from less fantastic beasts, such as bears, but also shed light on the evolution of those local bear populations.

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Republican Voters Not in Denial about Climate

Fri, 1 Dec 2017 19:45:00 -0500

An analysis of voter opinions finds that half of Republican voters think climate change is happening, and would support regulating CO2 as a pollutant. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Tech Honcho Wants Innovation for the Bottom Billion

Thu, 30 Nov 2017 20:55:00 -0500

At the World Conference of Science Journalists in October, Nathan Myhrvold, co-founder of Intellectual Ventures, charged innovation outfits with changing the lives of the world's most disadvantaged.  

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Bumper Stickers Make Highways More Social

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 21:19:00 -0500

A social scientist studies how car stickers turn the roads into actual information highways.  

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Chimps Able to Apprehend Another Chimp's Mind-Set

Mon, 27 Nov 2017 19:37:00 -0500

By listening to the calls of their brethren, chimps seem to be able to understand the mind-sets and perspectives of other chimps. Jason Goldman reports.

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