Science + Technology

Science + Technology
9:36 am
Thu April 23, 2015

'A God That Could Be Real' In The Scientific Universe

The star in the center, as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope, is known as V1331 Cyg and is located in the dark cloud LDN 981.
Karl Stapelfe ESA/Hubble, NASA

Originally published on Fri April 24, 2015 9:15 am

Part One Of Two. (Read Part Two here.)

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Science + Technology
3:39 pm
Thu April 9, 2015

Medical Schools Reboot For 21st Century

Dr. Raj Mangrulkar and medical student Jesse Burk-Rafel at the University of Michigan Medical School. Good communication skills, teamwork and adaptability will help doctors thrive through swift changes in medical science, Mangrulkar says.
Leisa Thompson Courtesy of University of Michigan Medical School

Originally published on Fri April 17, 2015 8:27 pm

Medicine has changed a lot in the past 100 years. But medical training hasn't — until now. Spurred by the need to train a different type of doctor, some top medical schools around the U.S. are tearing up the textbooks and starting from scratch.

Most medical schools still operate under a model pioneered in the early 1900s by an educator named Abraham Flexner.

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Science + Technology
5:20 pm
Wed April 8, 2015

From Pet To Pest, Goldfish Tip Scales Of Survival In Lake's Ecosystem

Originally published on Wed April 8, 2015 6:23 pm

Colorado wildlife officials believe someone released four or five pet goldfish into Teller Lake #5 a few years ago. Now, the fish number in the thousands and threaten the lake's ecosystem. Aquatic biologist Ben Swigle explains how they're trying to rid the lake of the invasive species.

Science + Technology
12:20 pm
Wed April 8, 2015

Science Sticks Its Neck Out For Brontosaurus

Originally published on Wed April 8, 2015 12:26 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Science + Technology
12:14 pm
Wed April 8, 2015

What The 'God Of The Gaps' Teaches Us About Science

Scientist Isaac Newton on an engraving from the 1800s.
iStockphoto

"God of the Gaps": When God is invoked to fill in the blanks in scientific knowledge. An old-fashioned and doomed theological approach, but one that is nevertheless very much alive in the minds of many.

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Science + Technology
2:36 pm
Tue March 31, 2015

Hackers Teach Computers To Tell Healthy And Sick Brain Cells Apart

The Allen Institute for Brain Science hosted its first BigNeuron Hackathon in Beijing earlier this month. Similar events are planned for the U.S. and U.K.
Courtesy of Allen Institute for Brain Science

Originally published on Wed April 8, 2015 11:17 am

Brain researchers are joining forces with computer hackers to tackle a big challenge in neuroscience: teaching computers how to tell a healthy neuron from a sick one.

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Science + Technology
2:01 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

Scientists Discover A New Form Of Ice — It's Square

Water molecules between two layers of graphene arranged themselves in a lattice of squares — unlike any other known form of ice.
NPG Press via YouTube

Originally published on Wed March 25, 2015 8:00 pm

Scientists recently observed a form of ice that's never been seen before, after sandwiching water between two layers of an unusual two-dimensional material called graphene.

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Science + Technology
9:53 am
Wed March 25, 2015

Should You Trust That New Medical Study?

Alexander Raths iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu March 26, 2015 7:36 pm

News of medical studies fill the headlines and airwaves — often in blatant contradiction. We've all seen it: One week, coffee helps cure cancer; the next, it causes it.

From a consumer's perspective, the situation can be very confusing and potentially damaging — for example, in a case where someone with a serious illness believes and follows the wrong lead.

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Science + Technology
8:21 pm
Tue March 24, 2015

A 'Post Modern Skateboard' That Ditches The Board

The Sidewinding Circular Skates are a modern hybrid of skates and skateboard.
Hammacher Schlemmer

If Marty McFly had a transportation upgrade between his skateboard and his hoverboard, it might look something like this.

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Science + Technology
2:58 pm
Thu March 12, 2015

After Rescue, Massive Sea Turtle Released Into Atlantic

The staff of the Sea Turtle Hospital at the South Carolina Aquarium named a stranded leatherback turtle Yawkey, after the area it was found stranded Saturday.
South Carolina Aquarium

Originally published on Thu March 12, 2015 8:01 pm

Updated at 6:56 p.m. ET

A 475-pound leatherback sea turtle that was rescued from a remote beach in South Carolina was returned to the ocean Thursday, after being found stranded ashore and nursed back to health. It took five people to carry the creature, officials say.

The turtle "immediately responded to treatments" of fluids, vitamins and antibiotics after it was rescued Saturday, says spokeswoman Kate Dittloff of the South Carolina Aquarium.

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Science + Technology
4:24 am
Thu March 12, 2015

Researchers Think There's A Warm Ocean On Enceladus

A new analysis suggests that Enceladus' ocean is being heated from the bottom up. That could explain plumes of ice seen at its south pole.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 8:07 pm

Saturn's moon Enceladus is a mystery. From Earth it looks tiny and cold, and yet it's not a dead hunk of rock. Passing spacecraft see trenches and ridges, similar to Earth's, and in 2005 NASA's Cassini mission spotted ice geysers streaming from its south pole.

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Science + Technology
6:03 pm
Wed March 11, 2015

Results Of Many Clinical Trials Not Being Reported

Glenn Lightner in 2012 at age 13. His father searched clinicaltrials.gov for years, to no avail, hoping to find a promising experimental cancer treatment that might save his son's life.
Courtesy of Lawrence Lightner

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 4:07 pm

Many scientists are failing to live up to a 2007 law that requires them to report the results of their clinical trials to a public website, according to a study in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine.

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Science + Technology
4:13 am
Fri March 6, 2015

NASA Probe Reaches Orbit Around Dwarf Planet

Astronomers have known about Ceres for centuries, but they don't really know what to make of it.
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

Originally published on Fri March 6, 2015 12:38 pm

Updated at 9:45 a.m. ET.

This morning, a plucky NASA spacecraft has entered the orbit of one of the oddest little worlds in our solar system.

Ceres is round like a planet, but really small. Its total surface would cover just a third of the United States.

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Science + Technology
3:36 am
Fri March 6, 2015

Could A Quokka Beat A Numbat? Oddsmakers Say Yes

One possible result in the Mighty Mini Mammals division of 2015's Mammal March Madness tournament. If the species that's seeded highest always wins its bracket, the fennec fox will beat out the rest of the division and advance to the final four.
Adam Cole NPR

Originally published on Sat March 28, 2015 7:05 pm

It's March, and that means college basketball fans are gearing up for the NCAA tournament. But there's another tournament taking place this month — and animals aren't the mascots, they're the competitors.

"Mammal March Madness" is organized by a team of evolutionary biologists. They choose 65 animal competitors and then imagine the outcome of a series of simulated interspecies battles. Who would win if a kangaroo took on a warthog? Or if an orca fought a polar bear?

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Science + Technology
7:39 am
Tue March 3, 2015

Can Cities Change Earth's Evolution?

Chicago skyline.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 2:43 pm

When Charles Darwin first taught us how to think about evolution, he also was teaching us to think about time. By allowing natural selection to work over millions of years, what might seem like a divine miracle (the creation of a new kind of animal) became something much more grounded (though equally wondrous).

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Science + Technology
4:23 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

Science-Based Artist Gives Celebrity Tortoise A Second Life

Adam Cole NPR

Originally published on Mon March 2, 2015 6:38 pm

George Dante fell in love with taxidermy as a young child. His parents took him to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, and he couldn't tear his eyes away from the dioramas in the Hall of African Mammals.

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Science + Technology
12:06 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

FCC Approves Net Neutrality Rules For 'Open Internet'

At the start of a meeting to decide the issue of net neutrality, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler (center) holds hands with FCC Commissioners Mignon Clyburn (left) and Jessica Rosenworcel at the FCC headquarters Thursday.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 6:27 pm

The Federal Communications Commission approved the policy known as net neutrality by a 3-2 vote at its Thursday meeting, with FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler saying the policy will ensure "that no one — whether government or corporate — should control free open access to the Internet."

The Open Internet Order helps to decide an essential question about how the Internet works, requiring service providers to be a neutral gateway instead of handling different types of Internet traffic in different ways — and at different costs.

"Today is a red-letter day," Wheeler said Thursday.

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Science + Technology
5:18 pm
Sun February 22, 2015

California's Drought Exposes Long-Hidden Detritus

California's long-term drought has significantly dropped the water level at Lake Perris in Southern California. According to local fishermen, all of this sand used to be covered in water.
Tom Dreisbach NPR

Originally published on Mon February 23, 2015 10:15 am

The message from park rangers, amateur metal detectors and regular fisherman at California's Lake Perris is unanimous: The water is lower than they've ever seen it.

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Science + Technology
5:10 pm
Sat February 21, 2015

Exploring The Solar System Through The Eyes Of Robotic Voyagers

This NASA file image shows a true color photo of Saturn assembled from images collected by Voyager 2.
HO AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 9:06 am

The Voyager spacecraft have revolutionized our understanding of our solar system since their launch in 1977. After decades of sending back data on our planetary neighbors, Voyager 1 and 2 are entering new territory: interstellar space.

In a new book, The Interstellar Age: Inside The Forty-Year Voyager Mission, planetary scientist Jim Bell shares the amazing human stories behind the machines' mission.

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Science + Technology
6:22 pm
Fri February 20, 2015

For The Evolution Of Marine Creatures, Bigger Is Better, Study Says

A blue whale is seen in Timor waters in an undated photo. The marine mammal buttresses Cope's rule, the notion that over the course of evolution, most animals tend to get bigger.
Kiki Dethmers AP

Originally published on Sat February 21, 2015 12:02 am

For more than 500 million years, sea creatures have been getting bigger — much bigger as it turns out, according to a study by scientists who say that the evolutionary trend toward larger body size fits with a 19th-century principle known as Cope's rule.

The rule, first posited in the late 1800s by Edward Drinker Cope, "states that evolution tends to increase body size over geologic time in a lineage of populations."

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