Science 2.0

Like Vaccines? Thank The Military

Science 2.0 - Dec 07 2018 - 09:12
As academia slid left politically in America beginning in the 1970s, an uncomfortable reality began to be swept under metaphorical university rugs; a whole lot of academic scientific innovation is due to military need. Like that your child's modern baby seat can't erupt in flame? Thank the Roman military of almost 2,000 years ago. Like heating up your recyclable pouch of avocado toast points in the microwave? Thank the American military of World War II,(1) when Raytheon engineer Percy Spencer discovered their culinary benefit while working on RADAR.

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Why You Don’t Need To Worry About The ‘Great Dying’ - It’s About The Permian Extinction 262 Million Years Ago

Science 2.0 - Dec 07 2018 - 03:12

This is running as a scary story in the news today. I’m asked if it means we are all going to die. No, it does not. That was a 10 °C rise and we are headed towards 3.6 °C at maximum with the Paris pledges already. With the Paris agreement if they continue to ramp up the pledges they should get within 2 °C, many countries have already got to that point in their pledges and a fair number to within 1.5 °C. Others, especially China and Russia, face huge challenges but are rising to them especially China. We aren’t currently headed for anything like 10 °C.

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Why You Don’t Need To Be Scared Of Asteroids - Far Less Scary Than Lightning

Science 2.0 - Dec 06 2018 - 17:12

Short summary - the risk from larger asteroids of 1 km upwards, large enough to have some global effects is more or less retired as a result of astronomical searches for the last few decades. There is still a risk from smaller asteroids, but in most cases we’d be able to deflect them if necessary, or evacuate the area. The chance of dying from an asteroid is tiny, far less than the risk of dying of lighning.

20 - 40 METER ASTEROIDS ARE TINY - JUST LARGE ENOUGH TO GET THROUGH THE EARTH’S ATMOSPHERE

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The Guardian Lets Legal Clerk Erin Brockovich Trump Biology, Toxicology, and Chemistry

Science 2.0 - Dec 06 2018 - 17:12
The Guardian, official newspaper of those in the anti-science left who still like to pretend they love science, knows what pays the bills...and it ain't science.

Yes, some real scientists write there, because it's mainstream media and scientists who do outreach want to be in as many publications as they can, but for the most part Guardian editors distrust science, because their audience does. And they love celebrities, for the same reason.

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HAT-P-11b: An Exoplanet Inflated Like A Helium Balloon

Science 2.0 - Dec 06 2018 - 16:12
A distant planet has an abundance of helium in its atmosphere so great that it has swollen to resemble an inflated balloon.

The helium of HAT-P-11b, 124 light years from Earth and in the Cygnus constellation, is blown away from the day side of the planet to its night side at over 10,000 km an hour. Because it is such a light gas, it escapes easily from the attraction of the planet and forms an extended cloud all around it.

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Apply By December 11 for the Mayo Foundation Journalist Residency Starting February 24, 2019

Science 2.0 - Dec 06 2018 - 14:12
Twenty journalism Fellowships funded by the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research are available to cover travel costs, accommodations and meals for their Mayo Foundation Journalist Residency, which will be held in Jacksonville, Florida, February 24-28, 2019. 

The journalists will receive a look at what’s new and what’s next in several medical specialties. Topics will include aging, cancer, brain injuries and diseases, transplant medicine, vaccines and developing technologies such as regenerative medicine, telemedicine and simulation-based medical training. 

To apply, write journalistresidency@mayo.edu by December 11th and detail:

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15th Century Fishing Fashion: Thigh-High Leather Boots?

Science 2.0 - Dec 06 2018 - 12:12

A new sewage treatment project in London discovered something in the mud of the Thames; the remains of a human, leg bones still covered by thigh-high leather boots.

When you say thigh-high leather boots it sounds much sexier than fishing waders, which are not made of leather any more because, let's face it, leather is useless in water and science improved fishing a lot. Archaeologists analyzing the remains say the grooves in his teeth were likely caused by rope, and that, plus his build, suggests his trade was fisherman. He was in his mid-30s, they estimate, so his death was not natural. 

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Firenado: How A Bad Luck Combination Led To California's Fire-Generated Vortex 17,000 Feet In The Air

Science 2.0 - Dec 05 2018 - 15:12

The Carr Fire in Shasta and Trinity Counties began July 23rd, 2018 after a tire blew out on a trailer and the rim made sparks on the pavement. setting dry vegetation in an area historically dry ablaze.

That's simple bad luck but it caused 359 square miles to burn, estimated to be the seventh largest fire in recorded California history. By the end of August it was contained but not before it led to eight fatalities and destroyed 1,079 residences. 

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Sir David Attenborough Tells The UN Global Warming Is Causing The 'Collapse Of Civilization'

Science 2.0 - Dec 05 2018 - 14:12
In 2006, former Vice-President and global warming clarion Al Gore said we only had 10 years to stop CO2 emissions or it would be too late. More cynical people noted that he came up with that 10-year figure because it was two years from his rematch contest for U.S. President plus eight he expected to be in office. It's beyond me to know if that was ever his intent, but if it was, perhaps a Peace Prize and an Academy Award made political campaigning too petty. He never ran again.

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Uterus Transplant From A Deceased Donor Leads To First Baby

Science 2.0 - Dec 05 2018 - 12:12
Infertility affects about 10 percent of couples and among them are one in 500 women with congenital defects in their uterus or a medical issue that caused damage. In the past, that meant adoption but recently uterus transplants became possible. In 2013, Sweden performed the first and since then there have been 39, resulting in 11 live births.

But those were living donors, and that is going to be rare because uterus donation is only available for women with friends or family members who will donate.

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Trace Chemicals Detectable On Cell Phones Are Not Harming Women, Kids, Or Minorities

Science 2.0 - Dec 05 2018 - 09:12
In Science Left Behind I showed that in America it was easy to accurately correlate beliefs about science to political viewpoints. If you believed in psychics, witchcraft, organic food or homeopathy, statistically I could be determine how you voted. If you believed in GMOs and vaccines I also knew how you voted. 

But everyone hates the word "chemical."

That is why it is fertile ground for scaremongering. As soon as you use the word chemical, people are scared, and if you throw the word "toxic" in front of it, like activist academics and $2 billion per year in environmental groups do, dollar signs are sure to follow.  

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CMS Observes Associated Production Of Top Quarks And Z Bosons

Science 2.0 - Dec 04 2018 - 05:12
My CMS colleague Didar Dobur, who chairs the "Top Properties" working group in the experiment, presented today the first observation of the process whereby a top quark is produced in association to a Z boson. I could follow the presentation by videoconference, so I am blogging about this result in close to real time, for a change.

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Mississippi Gopher Frog: Science 2.0 Beats Center For Biological Diversity In The Supreme Court 8-0

Science 2.0 - Dec 03 2018 - 18:12
It may not feel like science wins often in court but it beat out activists last week.

Not only did science, and Science 2.0, win, it was a unanimous decision at the highest court in the land, the Supreme Court of the United States.  And the ruling dealt a serious blow to "sue and settle" agreements with trial lawyer groups, in this case Center for Biological Diversity, along with limiting the power of the federal government to bully and intimidate landowners.

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Trace Levels Of Flame Retardant Chemicals In Car Seats Are Not Harming Your Child

Science 2.0 - Dec 03 2018 - 14:12
Marta Venier, an environmentalist at Indiana University, recently teamed up with a Michigan activist group to "test" car seats and declared they had toxic chemicals.

Obviously that is media clickbait but if you are reading here, you want to know science truth and will leave the fake news to Mother Jones. So let's get to it

In 2018, we can detect anything in anything

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NES/T Male Contraceptive Gel Promoted By Population Council Goes Into Clinical Trial

Science 2.0 - Nov 30 2018 - 16:11
The Population Council is enrolling 420 couples to test NES/T, which is the progestin compound segesterone acetate (Nestorone) in combination with testosterone.

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Plastic Is Here To Stay – An Environmentalist And An Archaeologist Discuss What Happens Next

Science 2.0 - Nov 30 2018 - 16:11

This is an article from Head to Head, a series in which academics from different disciplines chew over current debates. Let us know what else you’d like covered – all questions are welcome..

Sharon George: Plastics are ingrained in our everyday lives. Since 1950, it’s estimated that we have produced billions of tons of plastic, and most of this is not recycled.

Plastics have spread around the world through oceans, rivers and the air to every part of the planet. In rivers and oceans, plastic moves vast distances and is now found right through the water column of the oceans, from the surface to the deepest trenches.

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Gone With The Wind Is The Most Successful Movie Of All Time, But The Wizard Of Oz Is Most 'Influential'

Science 2.0 - Nov 30 2018 - 15:11
There's no question "Gone With The Wind" is the most successful movie of all time, when you count tickets sold, but it's not the most influential. Nor is "Star Wars."

A network analysis instead shows that title goes to "The Wizard Oz", the definitive Judy Garland film.

The analysis was of 47,000 films listed in IMDb (the internet movie database) and based on how much each film had been referenced by subsequent films.


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NAFTA 2.0 - A Win For Farmers And The Environment

Science 2.0 - Nov 30 2018 - 13:11
The North American Free Trade Agreement won't see its 25th birthday. The United States, Canada, and Mexico have signed on the dotted line for its replacement, The United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement.

The debate fell outside usual positions. Free trade is the hallmark of Republicans, they say, but they seemed to be unhappy with NAFTA. Democrats, in the old days, were protectionist about American workers, yet their criticisms suggested they wanted to keep manufacturing jobs in Mexico and for Canadian farmers to have a good deal in the U.S. while America got penalized in Canada.

What gives?  

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Science 2.0 Explains: What Is RNAi?

Science 2.0 - Nov 30 2018 - 12:11
In 8,000 B.C., when there were only about 10 million people on the entire planet, the boom and bust of famine and feast and wondering when the next meal would be was already a cultural concern. 

And so agriculture was created. Mankind set out to do genetic engineering, doing RNA Interference (RNAi) cereals, legumes, roots and tubers. They not only scientifically selected for larger fruits, uniform ripening and taste, they even turned dangerous natural foods into healthy ones. 

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Social Psychologists Don't Trust Evolutionary Psychologists - And Scientists Don't Trust Either

Science 2.0 - Nov 30 2018 - 11:11
Do you want to believe that your car grill is determined by your personality or that lap dancers get better tips when they are ovulating? You probably like evolutionary psychology. Want to believe that surveys of psychology undergraduates at elite schools represent humanity, without the expense and risk of dealing with real people, who can be pretty sketchy? Social psychology is for you.(1)

Scientists don't think much of either and would prefer they stay in the humanities buildings, because evolutionary psychologists want to make everything about sex, while social psychologists claim there are no differences between sexes. 

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