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January 2012

Written By: grant on January 20, 2012 No Comment

National Geographic ruins the illusion that maybe larks and mockingbirds might be safe from shark attacks. Nope. Songbirds are being found in tiger sharks’ stomachs:

Marcus Drymon, of Dauphin Island Sea Lab, has been studying fish off the Alabama coast since 2006. During a routine sampling in 2009, he pulled a tiger shark onto […]

Written By: grant on January 19, 2012 No Comment

Science Daily tries to figure out what the Greek gorilla or Austrian orangutan were really like:

To date scientists have assumed that great apes went extinct in Europe at least 9 million years ago because of changing climatic and environmental conditions. Under the direction of Nikolai Spassov from the National Museum of Natural Science […]

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Written By: grant on January 18, 2012 No Comment

SOPA and PIPA probably seem like good ideas at first glance, but they aren’t.

They really aren’t.

Written By: grant on January 17, 2012 No Comment

The Independent goes way back, digging up the history of the diva of the pharaohs:

It is the only tomb of a woman not related to the ancient Egyptian royal families ever found there, said Mansour Boraiq, the top government official for the antiquities ministry in the city of Luxor,

The singer’s name, Nehmes Bastet, means […]

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Written By: grant on January 16, 2012 No Comment

Discovery savors the very faint aroma of a 1,300-year-old Mayan tobacco flask – the first physical evidence that Mayans used super-strong tobacco:

None of the nicotine by-products associated with the smoking of tobacco was detected, likely ruling out the use of the vessel as an ashtray.

“The tobacco found in that container was probably not […]

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Written By: grant on January 15, 2012 No Comment
Science Art: <i>Pfd-symbols</i>, from the free open source program, Dia.

Image from Wikimedia Commons.

These symbols show steps in various chemical processes – the things you can do to change substances. Well, the things chemical engineers can do, one step leading into the next.

The symbols represent:

fan/stirrer, pneumatic line, pneumatic line vertical, measurement, simple heat exchanger
simple heat exchanger vertical, alternative heat exchanger, alternative […]

Written By: grant on January 13, 2012 No Comment

WaPo covers the war between a newly discovered frog and an itsy bitsy fish over which one is the smallest vertebrate:

An article Wednesday in the journal PLoS One named Paedophryne amauensis (pee-doh-FRY-nee AM-OW-en-sis) as the world’s smallest animal with a spine.

The adult frogs are about three-tenths of an inch long, and a millimeter […]

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Written By: grant on January 12, 2012 No Comment

MIT Tech Review is finally announcing part of that unimaginable future we’ve all been waiting for – fat-burning exercise in capsule form:

Researchers have discovered a natural hormone that acts like exercise on muscle tissue—burning calories, improving insulin processing, and perhaps boosting strength. The scientists hope it could eventually be used as a treatment […]

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Written By: grant on January 11, 2012 No Comment

Not a fever dream. Not a Discovery photoshop. No, it’s a newly discovered snake named Matilda:

Matilda, technically known as Atheris matildae, was named after the daughter of Tim Davenport, who is the Wildlife Conservation Society‘s Director of Tanzania and also co-authored a paper about the snake, published recently in the journal

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