Culture

Do hard money contributions by interest groups to members of Congress contribute to better quality policy deliberations and outcomes in congressional committees? A new study conducted by political scientist Kevin M. Esterling (University of California, Riverside) finds that over the long term—regardless of the intent of such contributions—they tend to create incentives for members of Congress to enhance their analytical capacity for policymaking.

How does life survive in the black depths of the ocean? At the surface, sunlight allows green plants to "fix" carbon from the air to build their bodies. Around hydrothermal vents deep in the ocean live communities of giant clams with no gut and no functional digestive system, depending on symbiotic bacteria to use energy locked up in hydrogen sulfide to replace sunlight. Now, the genome of this symbiont has been completely sequenced and published in Science.

The safest possible future for advancing nanotechnology in a sustainable world can be reached by using green chemistry, says James E. Hutchison, a professor of chemistry at the University of Oregon.

“Around the world, there is a growing urgency about nanotechnology and its possible health and environmental impacts,” Hutchison said in his talk Sunday during a workshop at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. “There is a concern that these issues will hinder commercialization of this industry.”

Silver-bearing ore found at the settlement founded by Christopher Columbus's second expedition was not mined in the Americas, new research reveals.Aerial view of La Isabela, the settlement established by Christopher Columbus's second expedition. Photo credit: J.M. Cruxent, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida.

The ore that researchers excavated from the settlement, La Isabela, came from Spain, said Alyson Thibodeau, who analyzed the ores.

MOSCOW. (Yury Zaitsev for RIA Novosti) - Thirty years ago the Soviet government issued a resolution on setting up a space-based system to search for ships in distress (known by its initials in Russian, KOSPAS) anywhere in the world.

Researchers at the University of Warwick have found a direct connection between a nation’s overall happiness and its citizens’ blood pressure problems. Sweden, Denmark and the UK come top of this blood pressure based happiness league while Germany, Portugal and Finland come bottom.

The research by economists Professor Andrew Oswald of the Department of Economics at the University of Warwick and Professor David Blanchflower of Dartmouth College USA is about to be published by the National Bureau of Economic Research in Massachusetts.

Three hundred million years ago, Earth's climate shifted dramatically from icehouse to hothouse, with major environmental consequences. That shift was the result of both rising atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations and the melting of vast ice sheets, new research by University of Michigan paleoclimatologist Christopher Poulsen shows.

In the digital age, organizing a photo collection has gone from bad to worse. The saying used to be that a picture is worth a thousand words. Now the question arises: what are a thousand pictures worth?

There is no such thing as a free lunch, some say, but they would be wrong. In fact, the entirety of the universe defies them. According to Stanford physics Professor Andrei Linde, one of the architects of the inflationary theory, our universe (and all the matter in it) was born out of a vacuum.

Nothing says romance like having your bone tissue extracted to show your love. But Biojewellry in the UK is doing exactly that.

The project is seeking couples who want to donate their bone cells - a couple having their wisdom teeth removed would be ideal. Their cells will be prepared and seeded onto a bioactive scaffold. This pioneering material encourages the cells to divide and grow rapidly in a laboratory environment, so that the scaffold disappears and is replaced by living bone tissue.