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Neuroskeptic

When Climate Skeptics use Pseudonyms

By Neuroskeptic | September 16, 2016 2:48 pm

Retraction Watch reveals that a ‘contrarian’ paper on climate change has been withdrawn after it emerged that the authors submitted it under pseudonyms – in fact, their own names spelled backwards:
The withdrawn paper, about predicting surface temperatures of planets, appeared in Advances in Space Research in August, 2015, and is authored by ‘Den Volokin’ and ‘Lark ReLlez’… climate scientist Gavin Schmidt pointed out on Twitter that the authors’ names are eerily similar to another pair …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: blogging, politics, science, select, Top Posts

Citizen Science Salon

Climate Change Uncovers Our Past

By Kristin Butler | September 16, 2016 8:52 am

When we think about climate change, we usually picture extreme temperatures, mega-storms, and rising seas disrupting our collective future.

But climate change is also erasing our past.

At our poles, melting ice is exposing and washing out new archeological discoveries. In the world’s arid regions, severe sandstorms are unearthing and eroding buried treasures. And on our coasts, rainstorms are revealing ancient reserves and wiping them out, often before scientists can study them.

Ironi …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Citizen Science

Seriously, Science?

Flashback Friday: Do you look at your poo? If not, here’s why you should.

By Seriously Science | September 16, 2016 6:00 am

As a scientist, I freely admit that I inspect my poop every day. And after reading this paper, I’m glad I do. That’s because one of the most obvious signs of colon cancer is a bloody stool, and you can only detect it if you’re looking at your doo-doo regularly. But do most people inspect their poops? Well, these gastroenterologists decided to find out. It turns out that I’m in the minority; only 27% of participants looked at every poop and wipe, and a whopping 6% never looked at eith …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: ha ha poop

D-brief

Diego the Tortoise Fathers 800 Offspring, Helps Save Species

By Nathaniel Scharping | September 15, 2016 2:04 pm

It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.

Diego, a 100 year-old Galapagos giant tortoise that was one of the last of his species, has played an outsize role helping the population rebound. A recent genetic analysis of the giant tortoise population on an island in the Galapagos concluded that some 40 percent of the tortoises living there are descended from Diego. Since the 1970s, the 100-year-old stud has fathered some 800 offspring. Of course, half the credit belongs to the six females  …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Mind & Brain, top posts

Citizen Science Salon

What's in YOUR Water?

By Eva Lewandowski | September 15, 2016 11:46 am

Water: We can’t live without it.

Photo: USFWS

Water is one of our most precious natural resources, so it’s not surprising that there are hundreds of scientists in need of your help to keep an eye on rivers, streams, lakes, oceans, and taps.  Below, our editors highlight five water monitoring projects. You can find hundreds more water projects with our SciStarter Water Project Finder.

Would you like y …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Citizen Science, Environment

Dead Things

Dinosaur Camouflage Revealed In Living Color

By Gemma Tarlach | September 15, 2016 9:00 am

What do dinosaurs have in common with great white sharks? Other than being awesome? Countershading, that’s what.

Researchers were able to reconstruct the color patterns on one plant-eating dinosaur from China and discovered it was rocking a look similar to the apex predator of Jaws, but for very different reasons.

Countershading — areas exposed to the most light are dark, while those most likely to be in shadow are light — is a common camouflage pattern in many of today’s animals …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Living World, top posts

Seriously, Science?

Science confirms that it's hard to know you're drunk when you're surrounded by drunk people.

By Seriously Science | September 15, 2016 6:00 am

I bet you’re one of those people who believes they can tell how drunk they are. That’s because most people think that. But according to this study, you might be wrong. These scientists tested every 7th person that passed by in “busy night time environments characterised by a high density of premises licensed for the on-site sale and consumption of alcohol.” The researchers tested the subjects’ intoxication levels, and asked them questions about how drunk they thought they were. It turned out …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: ethanol, feelings shmeelings

Neuroskeptic

How to Hold Scientific Journals Accountable?

By Neuroskeptic | September 15, 2016 3:41 am

Writing in PLoS Biology, neurobiologist Thomas C. Südhof discusses Truth in Science Publishing: A Personal Perspective. Südhof is a Professor in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology at Stanford. A veteran scientist, he’s been publishing since 1982.

So what’s the state of science publishing as Südhof sees it?

He first notes that “scientists, public servants, and patient advocates alike increasingly question the validity of published scientific results, endangering the p …

Astrobeat

OSIRIS-REx and its asteroid sampling comrades

By Liz Kruesi | September 14, 2016 5:20 pm

Last week, NASA launched its newest spacecraft on a mission to sample an asteroid and send that collected rock and dust back to Earth. The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft (short for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer) is on a two-year journey to Bennu, an asteroid about 1,600 feet (290 meters) wide and orbiting the Sun in a similar orbit to Earth’s. The spacecraft will get to Bennu in August 2018, and spend the next two years surveying the space roc …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Space & Physics

D-brief

How a Russian Scientist Bred the First Domesticated Foxes

By Nathaniel Scharping | September 14, 2016 4:10 pm

In just five decades, an experiment in Russia has accomplished something that took ancient humans thousands of years.

On a farm in Novosibirsk, Russian geneticist Dmitry K. Belyaev selectively bred hundreds of foxes over multiple generations, eventually creating something never seen before: a domesticated fox. His goal was to recreate the process by which humans gradually turned wild dogs into workers and friends, hopefully learning something about the mechanism of domestication in the  …

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Living World, top posts
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