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Updated: 15 min 43 sec ago

LHC Unveils New Hugs Boson - Embraces Supersymmetry With It

Apr 01 2020 - 11:04
Supersymmetry proponents, who have been inconsolable since the MERCURY and DVDMS experiments of the Large Halidone Collider (LHC) began eliminating most of the places where shadow particles of real physics could be hidden in 2012, rejoiced today when the LHC announced a new particle had been discovered after sorting through eleventy gazillion inverse femtobarns of signals.

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Spain, Italy, Germany And Iceland On Course To Contain Their Outbreaks Of COVID-19 - With A Change Of Direction UK Can Too

Apr 01 2020 - 07:04

Many countries are showing that the strategy of China, Singapore and South Korea also works in Europe - to aggressively find cases, isolate them, trace contacts and isolate them. They now need to keep this up.

Italy is now down to a 4% increase per day - that’s a doubling time of 17 days. It’s down from a doubling time of just 5 days a fortnight ago. Italy looks to be well past its exponential rise, and even over the stage of a linear increase too. The cases per day are decreasing significantly.

Doubling time of 17 days = [log(2)/log(1+4/100)]

Doubling time of 5 days = [log(2)/log(1+13/100)]

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Reduced Till Organic Soybeans Could Be Viable, But Prices Need To Be At Least 10% Higher

Apr 01 2020 - 06:04
Assuming the organic manufacturing process is able to sustain premium pricing levels. organic soybean producers using reduced-tillage production methods can achieve similar revenue, finds an ongoing experiment.

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Safer Affordable Fuel Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule Sticks To 31 MPG 2025 Standard, Focuses On CO2 Instead

Mar 31 2020 - 13:03
In 2012, the Obama administration set out a new emissions standard for cars, ostensibly in an effort to help the subsidized electric car segment, since only direct emissions counted and now the electricity that is 85 percent powered by fossil fuels.

It was aggressive, and going to be costly, but auto manufacturers saw the way the wind was blowing and agreed, knowing a new administration might be in power in 2017.

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'At This Point I Ran Out of Magnets' - How Not To Get Things Stuck Up Your Nose

Mar 31 2020 - 11:03
Dr. Daniel Reardon, an astrophysicist, is being a good sport in telling his story showing that modern scientists are not the applied physics geniuses like The Professor on "Gilligan's Island." 

He read a paper saying people touch their face too much and that could lead to getting SARS-CoV-2 into the body where it might cause COVID-19, and since magnets repel and he was bored he tried his hand at invention.

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New York Is Blaming Washington DC For Its Coronavirus Problem

Mar 31 2020 - 07:03
In 2015, New York Governor Mario Cuomo and his politically allied state legislature told experts to create a rationing plan for ventilators in case of a pandemic in the state. Though Ebola was wrecking Africa and coronavirus had done the same to the mid-east in 2012, New York politicians took the money that could have been used for the requested 16,000 ventilators and spent it on, among other porkbarrel initiatives, a solar panel plant being built by a political ally.

In March of 2020, the mayor of New York City told residents to go to bars right away if they wanted a drink because he was going to close them soon. Mayor de Blasio clearly did not take the threat seriously, since he told everyone to pack themselves into rooms with strangers.

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In COVID-19 Patients With Hypertension, ACE Inhibitors And Angiotensin Receptor Blockers May Improve Prognosis

Mar 31 2020 - 06:03
Patients with hypertension, heart failure, and chronic kidney disease are at increased risk of severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus that originated in Wuhan, China.

Now the debate is clinical use of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) in patients during the COVID-19 outbreak.

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Urea In Astronaut Pee Could Be Used To Build Moon Bases

Mar 30 2020 - 15:03
I'm not all that excited about manned missions in space because it is a struggle for NASA to even build a space telescope without going 13 years over budget, but it's worth doing basic research on how an outpost on Luna might be built.

It will require a lot of multi-purposing, and re-purposing. 

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Getting To The Heart Of The Coronavirus Pandemic

Mar 30 2020 - 12:03

In late December 2019 an outbreak of pneumonia cases arose in Wuhan, China. Patients presented with an acute respiratory illness linked to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). COVID-19 is a betacoronavirus, similar to Human Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronaviruses. SARS and MERS both cause severe respiratory disease. Although COVID-19 is primarily considered a respiratory virus, there is a strong link to cardiovascular disease.

COVID-19 — by the numbers

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To Fight COVID-19 Now, The UK Needs To Ramp Up To Testing, Contact Tracing And Isolation On A Massive Scale - And We Can STOP It

Mar 29 2020 - 15:03

Glad to see that the former health secretary Jeremy Hunt is asking our government to follow the WHO recommendations on COVID19. Not just mass testing, also quarantine and contact tracing, all on an unprecedented scale. His op ed is here:

This is just a virus, a disease. We can stop it. Good things are happenintg, people working together in a massive way.

We can do this. The cobas 8800 by Roche Diagnostics can test 2,500 samples a day.

400 of those machines would test a million samples a day.

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Mary Somerville

Mar 29 2020 - 12:03
The Google Doodle for 2nd February 2020 celebrates Mary Somerville, the Scottish polymath and science writer, and with Caroline Herschel, the joint first ever woman to be made an honorary member of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS).

Born in Jedburgh, Scotland, in 1780, Somerville received little formal education compared to her brothers. Largely self-taught, she pursued academic study from an early age, and went on to become accomplished in sciences including astronomy, mathematics, geography and chemistry. Somerville became famous after publishing The Mechanism of the Heavens, a translation and expansion of Pierre Laplace’s work that became a standard textbook for undergraduates at Cambridge.

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Abbott Develops A 5 Minute Coronavirus Test

Mar 28 2020 - 13:03
Abbott has developed a fast point-of-care SARS-CoV-2 test, which can provide a positive result in five minutes and a negative in 13 and FDA has given it an emergency use authorization.

Their ID NOW molecular point-of-care testing platform was introduced in 2014 and is already used for flu, Strep A and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) so the company knew they could optimize it for COVID-19 but in the past that would have been an onerous expensive job to get through the bureaucracy.
 

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COVID19 Does NOT Transmit Like Flu - Fact Checking UK Covid19 Policy Against Evidence From Science And WHO Recommendations

Mar 28 2020 - 12:03

The UK’s policy is based on a model of an influenza pandemic such as is used in pandemic simulations. Their disease is an upper respiriatory tract infection, and is airborne which means you can get it just by breathing the air of someone who is near you. Also a third of the population never develop symptoms.

However COVID19 is a very unusual respiratory disease. It infects the respiratory tract like flu but behaves in a very different way. The main difference is that SARS-CoV2 has an affinity for the cells in the lower respiratory tract and causes little by way of symptoms in the upper respiratory tract such as a runny nose or phlegm. This may also be the reason why it transmits differently.

It does NOT match the real world disease.

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Good News From Italy: COVID 19 Outbreak Halted In Italian Town Of Vo Euganeo At Record Speed - 90 To 0 New Cases In Two Weeks

Mar 28 2020 - 08:03

Good news - one small Italian town, Vo Euganeo, has completely stopped its outbreak by rigorously testing everyone in the community including those who were asymptomatic. To do that they disregarded a directive from their government to only test those who had symptoms.

Even China didn’t do that, or Singapore. They only tested those with fever or respiratory disease symptoms.

Vo Euganeo is in Veneto which has had consistently lower case numbers than the other provinces and has had the most rigorous approach to case finding.

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The Plot Thickens: Yet Another Lattice QCD Calculation Restores The Anomaly Of The Muon Magnetic Moment

Mar 27 2020 - 16:03
In a recent post I discussed the conclusions of a study aimed at computing a small but very important correction to the theoretical prediction of the anomalous magnetic moment of the muon. The interest of this lays in the fact that the latter quantity is virtually the only one for which the Standard Model prediction exhibits a tension with the current experimental measurements among all the measurable parameters of the subnuclear world. 

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In UK: Boris Johnson, Prince Charles, & Matt Hancock (Health Secretary) All Have COVID-19 & Chris Whitty Has Symptoms

Mar 27 2020 - 13:03

Sad to hear that Boris Johnson - and Prince Charles both tested positive for COVID-19. Matt Hancock our Health secretary also has it and Chris Whitty (our chief medical officer) is self isolating with symptoms so he might have it too. I hope they both get better of it - we won't know for over a week if it is the mild or severe version, even at their age the vast majority get the mild version. This post also has some good news from Italy.

Chief medical officer Chris Whitty self-isolating after showing coronavirus symptoms

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Oxygen Overshoot: The Mass Extinction Of 75 Percent Of Life On Earth

Mar 27 2020 - 07:03
Billions of years ago, an extinction occurred that dwarfed the event that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. Its history is written in Canadian rocks and show Earth lost nearly 75 percent of its plant and animal species.

But it had a benefit for us. The die-off of microorganisms that shaped the Earth's atmosphere paved the way for larger animals to thrive.

Given the current coronavirus pandemic, the third of the last 17 years, not to mention annual flu and the other infectious diseases we face, it may seem that microbes are unstoppable, but even when biology on Earth was comprised entirely of microbes, they still had enormous die-off events.

How to detect life before complex life even existed

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Dear Boris Johnson - UK's Policy On Covid-19 Needs Evidence Based Science Debate - We Must Not Delay - Every Minute Saves Lives

Mar 27 2020 - 03:03

I have sent variations of this email to my local MP, the shadow health secretary, leaders of the main parties etc.

Dear <MP>

Please challenge the government and ask for an evidence based science debate on the basis for their COVID-19 policies.

You can check what I say here with the experts at the WHO.

I have just sent this email to the Prime Minister:

Screenshot

Dear Prime Minister,

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Is Triscuit A Portmanteau Of 'Electricity' And Biscuit?

Mar 26 2020 - 12:03
Like most writers, Sage Boggs is a curious guy. At a party he saw there were Triscuits, the snack crackers, and asked why they were named Triscuits.

No one knew. Little shock there, most people also won't know the origin of "portmanteau" but it would be easy to assume that Triscuit is a play on Biscuit, so maybe it had three - tri - of something instead of two - bi - that regular crackers at the time had. Google had no clue but Google is just a search engine parsing content written by people who also don't know (except on Wikipedia, that is confidently written by people who definitely don't know - or who are working for anti-science groups, if you see what they have done to the Science 2.0 entry).

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'Whiskey Webs' Could Be Used To Identify Counterfeit Spirits.

Mar 26 2020 - 09:03
When a drop of liquid evaporates, solids are left behind in a pattern that depends on what the liquid is, what solids are in it and the environmental conditions.

You may have seen a 'coffee ring' when overflow deposits solids along the edge of the puddle as it evaporates. The same things happen with other beverages. Stuart Williams and colleagues previously found that drops of diluted American whiskeys -- but not their Scotch or Canadian counterparts -- formed webbed patterns when dried on a glass surface, and there were hints that the pattern was distinctive for different brands of whiskey.

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