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What Ecologists Can Learn From Memes

This story originally appeared on Atlas Obscura and is part of the Climate Desk collaboration. A meme of two angry men recently stampeded across the internet. It’s a scene from the reality show American Chopper, broken out into stacked panels, like a comic strip. The still images are pulled from a scene in which ...

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Troubled Times for Alternatives to Einstein’s Theory of Gravity

Miguel Zumalacárregui knows what it feels like when theories die. In September 2017, he was at the Institute for Theoretical Physics in Saclay, near Paris, to speak at a meeting about dark energy and modified gravity. The official news had not yet broken about an epochal astronomical measurement—the detection, by ...

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Racing can be fatal to horses

Intense exercise can be fatal to racehorses, according to a new University of Guelph study. Prof. Peter Physick-Sheard and a team of researchers examined 1,713 cases of racehorse deaths from 2003 to 2015, and found racing was connected to some of the deaths. “The study reveals parallels between mortality and ...

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A gut bacterium’s guide to building a microbiome

The mammalian gut is warm, moist, and incredibly nutrient-rich — an environment that is perfect for bacterial growth. The communities of “good bacteria” in the gut, commonly referred to as the microbiome, are vital partners for the body, helping to digest fiber, extract nutrients, and prevent various diseases. We are ...

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How to Fight Climate Change: Figure Out Who’s to Blame, and Sue Them

How it used to go was, after some extreme weather event, reporters would ask Climate McScientist, PhD whether the flood/drought/hurricane/disease outbreak/wildfire/superstorm happened because of climate change. Dr. McScientist would pat the reporter on the head and say: Well, of course, one can never ascribe any single weather event to a ...

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French bulldogs at risk of various health problems

French Bulldogs, predicted soon to become the most popular dog breed in the UK, are vulnerable to a number of health conditions, according to a new study published in the open access journal Canine Genetics and Epidemiology. Researchers at The Royal Veterinary College (RVC), UK found that the most common ...

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Toy-inspired experiment on behavior of quantum systems

With its suspended metallic spheres that clack back and forth, Newton’s cradle is more than a popular desktop plaything. It has taught a generation of students about conservation of momentum and energy. It is also the inspiration for an experiment Benjamin Lev, associate professor of physics and of applied physics ...

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A Robotics Startup Perishes, and It’s Got Tales to Tell

TickTock has run out of time. Don’t fret if you don’t know what that is—after all, the startup launched just a year ago. But in that time the company cycled through four different consumer robot concepts in the hopes of shaping the future of the home, moving beyond simpleton Roombas ...

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The Physics of Terrifying Technological Battlebot Tactics

[embedded content] It’s hard not to like BattleBots. It is essentially a modern technology-based sporting event in which teams build remote controlled robot-like things that fight in an arena. Two robots enter, one robot leaves—and on May 11, the eighth season of the showdown begins. Of course, there are many ...

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