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Updated: 23 min 41 sec ago

No More Ugly Solar Panels - Toward Alternative Energy That Blends Into The Landscape

Dec 27 2022 - 10:12
Going to an area where there are a lot of wind vanes can be shocking. The noise and environmental blight for so little energy isn't worthwhile, and needing to get exemptions from endangered species laws due to deaths of avians like eagles make them a real negative.

Solar panels have a little better cultural response but can still be unattractive. If you are a wealthy elite who doesn't like the appearance, or a government building using taxpayer funds, you may be able to turn architectural constraints into alternative energy without ruining the aesthetic. The archaeological park of Pompeii and the Portuguese city of Evora are creating solar panels that look like ancient Roman tiles or terracotta bricks to match the skyline.

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This Counterpunch Monsanto Conspiracy Theory Article Is Just A Veneer For Paid Gambling Sites

Dec 26 2022 - 11:12
An account going by the name of Andy Hsieh, there is a lot of astroturf in the anti-science community so it's hard to know if it's even a real blogger, wrote one of those predictable screeds endorsing their political allies, this time against agriculture.

It could have been cell phones or vaccines or nuclear energy - 84% of the time if you see any of those you know every political and scientific position they hold(1) - and the conspiracy tale would be the same.

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Nineveh: When The Capital Of Assyria Was The Most Dazzling City In The World

Dec 25 2022 - 05:12

Archaeologists in northern Iraq, working on the Mashki and Adad gate sites in Mosul that were destroyed by Islamic State in 2016, recently uncovered 2,700-year-old Assyrian reliefs. Featuring war scenes and trees, these rock carvings add to the bounty of detailed stone panels excavated from the 1840s onwards, many of which are currently held in the British Museum.

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Chocolate: When Money Did Grow On Trees

Dec 24 2022 - 08:12

Advent calendars with hidden chocolatey treats, huge tins of Quality Street and steaming cups of hot chocolate festooned with whipped cream and marshmallows are all much-loved wintry staples at Christmastime. But how many of us stop to think about where chocolate actually comes from and how it made its way into our culinary culture?

The story of chocolate has a compelling, rich history that academics like me are learning more about every day.

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‘Peer Community In’ May Accomplish What Open Access Could Not

Dec 22 2022 - 11:12

In 2017, three researchers from the National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (INRAE), Denis Bourguet, Benoit Facon and Thomas Guillemaud, founded Peer Community In (PCI), a peer-review-based service for recommending preprints (referring to the version of an article that a scientist submits to a review committee).

The service greenlights articles and makes them and their reviews, data, codes and scripts available on an open-access basis. Out of this concept, PCI paved the way for researchers to regain control of their review and publishing system in an effort to increase transparency in the knowledge production chain.

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Genetically Rescued Organisms: My Comment To USDA On Restoring The American Chestnut Tree

Dec 21 2022 - 11:12
'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire' is in a popular Christmas song, but a lot less common now than when it was written. That is due to an invasive species from Asia. It was once common for environmentally woke people to introduce species from Asia in their opposition to chemicals, because they believed all nature is better than any science, but from California (Bradford pear) to Vermont (the American chestnut) what the science community warned them about doing came to pass. Devastation.

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Christmas Trees Are The Definition Of Sustainable - Why Do Environmentalists Oppose Them?

Dec 21 2022 - 10:12
The pandemic must be over because activists are back to complaining about Christmas trees, which means they will also be back to being anti-vaccine as soon as Republicans stop being idiots and it is once again a safe space for progressives to own. Just like every year from 1998 to 2020.

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Tomb Of Salome Found In Israel

Dec 20 2022 - 13:12
Inscriptions on the walls and crosses in a grotto first found by grave robbers in Lachish national park of the Judean lowlands west of Jerusalem have led archaeologists to conclude it was dedicated to Salome, associated with the birth of Jesus Christ in early Christian accounts.  The Jewish burial chamber and ossuaries dating back to the Roman period became part of a Christian chapel during the Byzantine era until the region was captured by the Rashidun Caliphate in the middle of the 7th century.

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Glioblastoma: Genetically Modified DeltEx Drug-Resistant Immunotherapy Gets Phase II Clinical Trial

Dec 20 2022 - 12:12
From insulin to lowering environmental strain to grow food, genetic engineering is one of the marvels of the 20th century. In the 21st, CRISPR-Cas9 or something else may achieve the same lofty status but genetic engineering isn't done yet.

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200 Million Years Before Giant Whales, Ichthyosaurs Migrated To Give Birth In...Nevada

Dec 20 2022 - 10:12
Giant blue and humpback whales migrate across the ocean to breed and give birth in waters where predators are scarce.

A new analysis of the fossil bed in the Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park (BISP) in Nevada’s Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest suggests that nearly 200 million years before giant whales evolved, school bus-sized marine reptiles called ichthyosaurs may have been making similar migrations to breed and give birth together in relative safety.

Nevada is east of the very large state of California, and the study offers a possible explanation why at least 37 of these marine reptiles came to meet their ends in the same locale.

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Breakthrough: First Direct Measurement Of The Donnan Potential

Dec 20 2022 - 10:12
The Donnan electric potential arises from an imbalance of charges at the interface of a charged membrane and a liquid but detecting it directly has not been possible. Until now.

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Could High Quality Masks Solve China's COVID Problems? Idea For A Randomized Control Trial Of Masks In Households To Find Out

Dec 19 2022 - 17:12

How effective are masks at breaking transmission of COVID?

At present we have many studies but mainly observational - and we have a wide range of expert views on how effective or not the best masks really are

With the rapid spread of COVID in China - that's a country that has the motivation to find answers fast, and has a culture that is very accepting of masks.

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Why Doesn't NASA Respond To Public Concerns On Its Samples From Mars Environmental Impact Statement? (short Version For Experts)

Dec 19 2022 - 10:12

First for anyone who doesn't know, NASA’s perseverance rover is currently collecting small samples of rock and leaving them on the surface in tubes on Mars. NASA want to return them some time around 2033 and they plan to return its Mars samples of rock and some dust / soil to biosafety level 4 facilities (BSL-4). But the ESF in 2012 said we have to contain ultramicrobacteria from Mars and a BSL-4 can’t do that.

See longer version of this post with extra graphics and explanations for non experts.

As Carl Sagan said:

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Why Doesn't NASA Respond To Public Concerns On Its Samples From Mars Environmental Impact Statement?

Dec 19 2022 - 03:12

First for anyone who doesn't know, NASA’s perseverance rover is currently collecting small samples of rock and leaving them on the surface in tubes on Mars. NASA want to return them some time around 2033 and they plan to return its Mars samples of rock and some dust / soil to biosafety level 4 facilities (BSL-4). But the ESF in 2012 said we have to contain ultramicrobacteria from Mars and a BSL-4 can’t do that.

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How To Recapture The Historical Spirit Of Christmas

Dec 18 2022 - 11:12

If the media, popular entertainment, and retail habits are taken as indicators then the celebration of Christmas is no longer just the reserve of Christians. This has some consequences for the religious and non-religious alike.

In popular culture and the media, Christmas is portrayed as a time of happiness, togetherness, generosity, and peace. In the “made for Christmas” movies, such as those on the popular Hallmark Channel, a “feel good” message is the order of the day.

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This Is Your Opportunity To Tell NASA You Want To Keep Earth Extra Safe During Their Samples From Mars Mission

Dec 17 2022 - 12:12

This isn’t something to be scared of. Margaret Race’s analogy of a smoke alarm is a good way of thinking about it especially for this first mainly geological mission from Mars. But we do need smoke alarms in a modern house and this is our “house” for billions of people.

Do comment on the proposal with your thoughts, they are asking for feedback and do share this post if you want to do something about it.

NASA

- Do Listen To Public Concerns About Life In Samples From Mars

- Your Plan Is Like Building Us A House Without Smoke Alarms

Please share widely and comment on their plans - comments close Dec. 20

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Why Space Explorers Should Care About Any Life On Mars, And Its Capabilities, To Protect Themselves And Earth As They Explore

Dec 16 2022 - 22:12

Open letter to Space Colonization Enthusiasts. This is to accompany my post about how I believe it is important for NASA to get its environmental impact statement for a Mars sample return right, and numerous issues I found with it.

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Eager To Return Mars Samples, Why Is NASA Metaphorically Building A House Without Smoke Alarms? Do Ask The Public First!

Dec 16 2022 - 20:12

NASA are planning to return its Mars samples to biosafety level 4 facilities. That was fine in 2009. But the problem is that it doesn’t contain the very small microbes we now know exist called ultramicrobacteria which can get through a very tiny 0.1 micron nanopore and still be viable.i

The chance of returning life on those mainly geological samples is low. The chance it is dangerous if returned is low. To give an idea of the order of risk I use Margaret Race's analogy of a smoke alarm. The risk of a fire in your house is so low most people don't panic about it. But you still install smoke alarms just in case.

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Open Letter - NASA's Plans To Protect Earth For A Mars Sample Return Are Not Properly Thought Out - We Need To Get This Right

Dec 16 2022 - 16:12
Dear planetary protection experts, astrobiologists, and other interested members of the public.

Are you aware of NASA's draft Environmental Impact Statement. They expect to complete the legal process by spring to summer next year using the new fast track NEPA process. They will do this by treating the returned samples as toxic compounds that we can handle like any human disease or toxic chemical in a Biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) facility. They aren't listening to the public comments asking them to take more care.

The way it's drafted, it's likely that none of the other agencies in the USA will show an interest, because they claim there is no significant risk of environmental effects, and no more risk to human health than any other toxic substance we know how to handle.

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The Playstation 5 Is Bipartisan - That's Probably Why It Is The Top Most Searched For Gift In The US

Dec 16 2022 - 13:12
In the mid-term elections, political pundits noted that if demographic shifts continue, minorities and the young will be less of a factor for Democrats while rural areas will decline for Republicans.

Maybe candidates need to start embracing Playstation culture. An analysis of search results by coupon site Rakuten reveals that Florida, California, and Texas can't agree on much except a Playstation 5 at Christmas (Since we are a nonprofit, Amazon Smile gives us a nickel or something if you use the links from here.) 

That's right, it is the top most searched for Christmas gift this year, from Pelosi-land to DeSantis-ville.

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