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Scientists unlock secrets of a heat-loving microbe

Scientists studying how a heat-loving microbe transfers its DNA from one generation to the next say it could further our understanding of an extraordinary superbug. Sulfolobus is part of the Archaea kingdom -- a single-cell organism similar to bacteria -- which was isolated in hot springs on the island of Hokkaido, Japan.

Computer graphics: Less computing time for sand

Computer graphics today can produce amazingly photorealistic images. Many motives, however, require very long computation times. Researchers have now developed a process, by means of which granular objects made of e.g. sand, snow or sugar can be computed more quickly.

Going Solar: System Requirements For 100% U.S. Solar Generated Utility Baseload Electricity

By: Tom D. Tamarkin & Barrie Lawson Over the next 50 years, utility companies in the United States must replace approximately 440 Gigawatts (GW) of baseload generation capacity to provide electricity nationwide. Significant electrification...Show More Summary

The million year old monkey: New evidence confirms the antiquity of fossil primate

An international team of scientists have dated a species of fossil monkey found across the Caribbean to just over one million years old. The lead researcher of this study said that the dating of the limestone surrounding the fossils, said the question of the age of primate fossils from this region has puzzled scientists since the days of Darwin and Wallace.

Fourth wheat gene is key to flowering, climate adaptation

A fourth wheat gene governing vernalization -- the biological process requiring cold temperatures to trigger flower formation -- has been identified, giving plant breeders one more tool for developing improved varieties of wheat that are adaptable to climate change.

Catastrophic Thinking: When Your Mind Clings to Worst-Case Scenarios

How often does a negative thought spiral into an imminent disaster? How often does something innocuous become an impending catastrophe in your mind? For instance, a blemish on your face becomes a cancerous tumor. A flight to another state turns into the plane crashing. Your […]

Friday assorted links

1. Ava Gardner at 13. 2. Why don’t elephants explode?  A claim that the wind shortage is a data illusion. 3. 2015 was not a year of significant U.S. wage gains.  And New York City ramps up its war against Coase. 4. Chelsea Clinton for President. 5. IS-LM really did fail for the 1980s. 6. […]

WTO Finds Dirt in India’s Clean Energy Program

The World Trade Organization has reportedly found that India’s solar power subsidies violate global trade rules.  According to the Wall Street Journal: In a report sent to India and the U.S. late last week, the dispute settlement panel...Show More Summary

New Report Confirms That the VA Continues to Fail Veterans

The Department of Veterans Affairs has been embroiled in scandal for more than a year, ever since a whistleblower alleged that 40 veterans had died while waiting for care at the Phoenix branch. A subsequent investigation by the department’s...Show More Summary

Scary-looking lampreys may be commoner than thought in UK rivers

Metre-long lampreys, which have long been endangered in the UK, are starting to return to their former habitats thanks to innovative conservation

Happy families? Not with these policies

Governments are implementing welfare cuts that makes having children a less-than-happy experience

25 Free Online Spanish Language Lessons

Learning how to speak Spanish? It can be tricky to find high quality online lessons that don’t cost a fortune. You want to learn Spanish, and you’re willing to put in the time, but where can you go to learn? With this question in mind,...Show More Summary

"Earth as an Exoplanet" --Nitrogen May Prove a Clue to Alien Life

Should life truly exist on an exoplanet, detecting nitrogen as well as oxygen could help astronomers verify the oxygen’s biological origin by ruling out certain ways oxygen can be produced abiotically, or through means other than life. Observations of nitrogen...

“Those Diversions which usually accompany such Proceedings”

The New-London Gazette of 23 Aug 1765 offered this report on an event in that Connecticut town the night before:Yesterday, a little before Night, the Effigy of J—d I——l, Esq; late Agent for this Colony, (but now distributor of Stampt...Show More Summary

Crime, ‘San Francisco’s Doomed': The (APSA) Week In One Song

This week, the primary professional organization of most people on this blog, the American Political Science Association, meets in San Francisco. To mark this occasion, I’ve dredged up a relevant 1978 track from old-school SF punks Crime: San Francisco’s Doomed. The band’s practice of dressing as police officers during performances apparently did not endear them […]

Hubble Unlocks Clues to Star Formation --From Blue Super Giants to Red Dwarfs

In a survey of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope images of 2,753 young, blue star clusters in the neighboring Andromeda galaxy (M31), astronomers have found that M31 and our own galaxy have a similar percentage of newborn stars based on mass....

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