Science

  • Creeping slime is coating hallowed monuments
    Fox News

    Creeping slime is coating hallowed monuments

    It sounds like the stuff of horror films: a creeping black slime that can't be killed. But experts say a real-life microbial invasion is coating some of the nation's most important monuments in black. The National Park Service earlier this month reported the "biofilm" has befouled the Jefferson Memorial, particularly its "gleaming white rotunda," and appears on the Washington and Lincoln Memorials and on tombstones in the Congressional Cemetery. But the mysterious substance—"part algae, part bacteria, part fungi," the Washington Post reports—isn’t unique to the Washington, DC, area. Biofilm has slimed sites around the globe, from Egypt to Italy to the Angkor Wat temples in Cambodia, per the NPS.

  • A lengthening crack is threatening to cause an Antarctic ice shelf to collapse
    Mashable

    A lengthening crack is threatening to cause an Antarctic ice shelf to collapse

    A large rift is widening across an increasingly fragile Antarctic ice shelf, scientists found. About 10 to 12 percent of the Larsen C Ice Shelf is expected to break off during such an event, leaving the larger ice shelf even more vulnerable to melting from increasing air and ocean temperatures. The iceberg and ice shelf melting would not, however, increase sea levels, since the ice is already resting in the ocean, like an ice cube in a glass.

  • Nearly Everything the Media Tell You About Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Is Wrong
    CNS News

    Nearly Everything the Media Tell You About Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Is Wrong

    A major new report, published today in the journal The New Atlantis, challenges the leading narratives that the media has pushed regarding sexual orientation and gender identity. Co-authored by two of the nation’s leading scholars on mental health and sexuality, the 143-page report discusses over 200 peer-reviewed studies in the biological, psychological, and social sciences, painstakingly documenting what scientific research shows and does not show about sexuality and gender. “The belief that sexual orientation is an innate, biologically fixed human property—that people are ‘born that way’—is not supported by scientific evidence. “Likewise, the belief that gender identity is an innate, fixed human property independent of biological sex—so that a person might be a ‘man trapped in a woman’s body’ or ‘a woman trapped in a man’s body’—is not supported by scientific evidence.

  • 500-Year-Old Hidden Images Revealed in Mexican 'Manuscript'
    LiveScience.com

    500-Year-Old Hidden Images Revealed in Mexican 'Manuscript'

    Storytelling images on a deer-hide "manuscript" from Mexico have been seen for the first time in 500 years, thanks to sophisticated scanning technology that penetrated layers of chalk and plaster. This "codex," a type of book-like text, originated in the part of Mexico that is now Oaxaca, and is one of only 20 surviving codices that were made in the Americas prior to the arrival of Europeans. Other Mexican codices recovered from this period contained colorful pictographs — images that represent words or phrases — which have been translated as descriptions of alliances, wars, rituals and genealogies, according to the study authors.

  • Associated Press

    Scientists: Puffin chicks starving with less food available

    Atlantic puffin chicks on Machias Seal Island in the Gulf of Maine have had the worst breeding season ever recorded, with the majority of chicks starving to death in burrows, scientists said. A drop in the puffins' food supply is to blame, said Tony Diamond, director of the Atlantic Laboratory for Avian Research at the University of New Brunswick. In a typical year, 60 percent of the puffin nests with eggs produce chicks that fly off the nest, and this year, the success rate was 12 percent, the Portland Press Herald (http://bit.ly/2bCwkaf) reported.

  • A lost spacecraft is talking to NASA again after nearly 2 years in the void
    Business Insider

    A lost spacecraft is talking to NASA again after nearly 2 years in the void

    Somewhere on the other side of the sun, almost directly opposite to Earth, a 9-year-old NASA spacecraft has drifted aimlessly through the void, unable to establish contact with our planet, since Oct. 1, 2014. Each STEREO spacecraft launched in 2006 and began circling the sun in slightly different yet Earth-like orbits. This also allowed NASA to get amazing 3D views of solar flares, coronal mass ejections, huge loops of plasma, and other solar activity.

  • German Greens call for end to coal power in 20 years
    AFP

    German Greens call for end to coal power in 20 years

    Germany's opposition Green party unveiled Monday a 10-point plan to end electricity generation from coal within 20 years, a key plank of its campaign heading into next year's general elections. "We aim to introduce the end of the coal era in Germany, irreversibly and reliably in the coming parliamentary term," running to 2021, Green lawmakers wrote in the proposal, a copy of which was obtained by AFP. As the smallest party represented in parliament, the Greens have been mooted as a potential kingmaker to Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives after the general election expected in September or October 2017.

  • Town & Country

    British Hedgehog Population Is in Danger of Collapse

    Humans are likely to blame, with developers building on traditional habitats and farmers changing landscapes, but British citizens are stepping up to do what they can for the spiny little beasts. Some hold official, paying positions (a job in Ipswich garnered approximately 150 applications this summer), while others, like Linda Cleme, volunteer their time, working to rehabilitate hedgehogs. "I've got very fond of hedgehogs because they don't cause any harm to people," she told the Wall Street Journal.

  • New "Smart" Plastic Could Give Your Whole House Transitions Lenses
    Popular Mechanics

    New "Smart" Plastic Could Give Your Whole House Transitions Lenses

    Researchers from the University of Austin have developed a new process for making "smart tinting" plastic that could help save on heating and cooling bills. Paired with a sunlight sensor, you could easily get Transitions for your whole house.

  • Breadwinner Men May Have More Money, But Poorer Health
    LiveScience.com

    Breadwinner Men May Have More Money, But Poorer Health

    Men who earn more money than their wives may be rolling in the bucks, but they tend to have poor health and heightened anxiety, new research shows. Researchers analyzed surveys from 9,000 young married men and women in the United States taken annually over a 15-year period, and evaluated each participant's response on income, health and psychological wellness. The findings suggest that men who are primary breadwinners — and who, in essence, fulfill the culturally held expectation that husbands should bring home more money than their wives — are actually worse off than men who earn salaries that are more equal to those of their wives.

  • Scientists have figured out how to make wires 60,000x smaller than a human hair
    Mashable

    Scientists have figured out how to make wires 60,000x smaller than a human hair

    Microbiologists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst have found a way to make electrical wires that are thousands of times thinner than a human hair.  The secret? The "microbial nanowires," or little hair-like protein filaments, or pili, produced

  • What are the origins of life? There's a rocket for that
    Reuters Videos

    What are the origins of life? There's a rocket for that

    NASA scientists are putting the finishing touches on a spacecraft designed to rendezvous with Asteroid Bennu in 2018 to find clues about the origins of life.

  • LiveScience.com

    Deadly Case of 'Bagpipe Lung' Highlights Danger of Fungal Infections

    One man's fatal lung infection highlights a rare danger that musicians may face: getting sick from fungi growing within their instruments, according to a recent report of the case. The 61-year-old man developed what his doctors in England described as "bagpipe lung," and died just a month after he was hospitalized for his infection, according to the case report, published today (Aug. 22) in the journal Thorax. The man had previously been diagnosed with a lung condition called hypersensitivity pneumonitis, in 2009, the doctors who treated him wrote.

  • 10 companies hiring people to work on driverless cars
    TechRepublic

    10 companies hiring people to work on driverless cars

    With Tesla unveiling its Master Plan 2.0 that includes a fleet of shared, driverless vehicles, Ford's announcement that it will mass produce fully-autonomous cars by 2021, and Uber's plan to use driverless cars in Pittsburgh by the end of August, there has never been more enthusiasm for the potential of self-driving cars. But, while Tesla's Autopilot and other driver assistance systems have come a long way in advancing the technology behind autonomous driving, there are still some big technical hurdles to overcome to get these vehicles ready for the public—and that's fantastic news for tech jobs. If you're a software developer, engineer, roboticist, or designer, now has never been a better time

  • ABC News

    Video: Life in Space: A Conversation With Astronauts Aboard the ISS

    Welcome to a very special ABC news live streaming events I'm going to be talking with two American astronauts. Flight commander Jeff Williams ended doctor Kate Rubens live from the International Space Station this is live streaming and all of ABC's. Digital platforms as well as as FaceBook. A FaceBook lied. I want to welcome our two astronauts. Flight commander Jeff Williams is about to set a record for the most cumulative days in space. But it will be a total of 534. And doctor Kate Rubens is is on her. Her first spaceflight. Kate I want to I want to start by asking you a question I I understand that both of you win on the space walk at the end of last week. It was your first space walk. So

  • This fast-casual chain New Yorkers love just took sustainable food to the next level
    Business Insider

    This fast-casual chain New Yorkers love just took sustainable food to the next level

    By October 2016, the popular farm-to-counter chain will open a 50-acre organic farm near Hudson, New York, CEO Adam Eskin tells Business Insider. Dig Inn's farmers will experiment with different organic farming methods, seed varieties, and crop rotations, Taylor Lanzet, Dig Inn's sustainability manager, tells BI. Since its launch in 2011, Dig Inn has opened 11 New York locations and one in Boston.

  • This Tree Started Growing During the Viking Age
    LiveScience.com

    This Tree Started Growing During the Viking Age

    The tree, dubbed "Adonis" by the scientists who discovered it, is a Bosnian pine (Pinus heldreichii) that took root in A.D. 941, high in the Pindus mountains of Greece. "It is quite remarkable that this large, complex and impressive organism has survived so long in such an inhospitable environment, in a land that has been civilized for over 3,000 years," Paul J. Krusic, a dendrochronologist at Stockholm University in Sweden, and the leader of the expedition that found the tree, said in a statement. Researchers first discovered the tree during a research trip run by the Navarino Environmental Observatory (NEO), which was analyzing tree rings for evidence of the region's past climate.

  • NASA Just Made All Its Research Free Online
    Popular Mechanics

    NASA Just Made All Its Research Free Online

    Yesterday, NASA announced a massive new public project that will make all of its publicly funded research available online for free. A new portal, Pubspace, will host thousands of NASA research articles on topics like the toxicity of lunar dust or the make up of Earth's early atmosphere. This resource appears three years after the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy directed NASA to share more of its research with the public.

  • NASA tests powerful rocket engine
    CBS News

    NASA tests powerful rocket engine

    NASA is testing what could be its most powerful rocket engine ever, in an effort to power the first manned mission to Mars. CBS News senior space consultant Bill Harwood joins CBSN with more.

  • World's largest pyramid is hidden in a mountain in Mexico
    Fox News

    World's largest pyramid is hidden in a mountain in Mexico

    When Hernan Cortez and his Spanish army marched into Cholula in present-day Mexico nearly 500 years ago, they were greeted by a peaceful people prone to building pyramids instead of stockpiles of weapons. Those people and their pyramids fell, and fast, with 10% of the local population murdered in a day as their pyramids were torched into oblivion. But as legend has it, one mud-brick pyramid was hidden, perhaps accidentally by vegetation, and was for centuries mistaken for a mountain, until locals began to construct an insane asylum in 1910. That's when they discovered the largest monument ever constructed anywhere in the world. Tlachihualtepetl, or the Great Pyramid of Cholula, stands more than

  • MIT scientists think they can make your WiFi 10x faster
    CNN Money

    MIT scientists think they can make your WiFi 10x faster

    Getting good WiFi at a sporting event isn't easy. But researchers at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory think they've solved this problem. In crowded areas -- be it a concert, airport, conference hall or sports stadium -- a bunch of wireless routers need to be installed to deliver Internet access to everyone. Having so many routers can create interference, leaving a frustrated crowd with painfully slow Internet access. In a new paper published online, the MIT team described a method for managing networks that causes the routers to collaborate better. The researchers developed algorithms that process a router's signal so that multiple routers can send information on

  • LiveScience.com

    Glass Half Empty? Why You May Be Less Optimistic Than You Think

    The studies that have suggested that people tend to be inherently optimistic may have had flawed methods of measuring this so-called "optimism bias," the researchers said. Optimism bias, for example, is thought to occur in people who are told their statistical chance of experiencing a bad life event such as cancer. "Previous studies, which have used flawed methodologies to claim that people are optimistic across all situations and that this bias is 'normal,' are now in serious doubt," Adam Harris, a psychologist at University College London and co-author of the study, said in a statement.

  • The villagers who fear herbicides
    BBC News

    The villagers who fear herbicides

    Argentina is one of the world's largest exporters of genetically-modified soya. It's big business, but some local residents fear herbicides used by the industry could be making them sick. Horacio Brignone lives in the village of María Juana in the Argentine flatlands, or pampas. From his window he can see fields of soya. His 20-year old son has suffered from asthma since he was three years old, he says, but when he recently moved to a city the condition disappeared. "He hasn't had an attack for two years since he went to study in Córdoba," says Horacio. "But when he came home for two months recently, he began to cough again." He blames the weedkiller sprayed on the soya fields. "We are 50m from

  • Blue lakes on an East Antarctic glacier are a troubling sign, scientists say
    Mashable

    Blue lakes on an East Antarctic glacier are a troubling sign, scientists say

    British researchers have discovered a troubling trend in East Antarctica: As air temperatures become warmer each summer, more and deeper lakes are showing up atop Langhovde Glacier. Their study, published this month in the journal Geophysical Research

  • What California's Night Skies Would Look Like Without Light Pollution
    CityLab

    What California's Night Skies Would Look Like Without Light Pollution

    It’s thought that, thanks to light pollution, one-third of the world’s population can’t see the Milky Way. But that doesn’t mean you can’t hunt stars near urban centers, as this short film documents with excellent, naturally blazing nocturnal skies. Made by Sriram Murali, Lost in Light begins under the soupy, human-lit heavens of Silicon Valley and progressively moves to less-and-less inhabited areas of California (plus Crater Lake in Oregon). Murali’s goal was to “shoot at every level of light pollution,” he writes, a challenge he accomplished using resources like Dark Site Finder. Here’s more from his rather-wistful project description: Imagine if we lived under skies full of stars. That reminder