05 November, 2014 – Episode 488 – This Week in Science


Driving The Climate, D’Oh Clymatia, Connecting Humanity, Smelly Women, Big Ol Mammal, The Dumb Vote, Brains On Fat And Sugar, The Telomerator, Financial Advisors?, Life On Water, Lingering Smoke, Go Fever?, Ebola Update, And Much More…

Disclaimer disclaimer disclaimer!
Remember, remember this fifth of November
That science is progress
And will not surrender
That elections of leaders who are doubters of reason
Will find a world without science
A world hotter each season
We have given a pass to a party of voices
Who habitually make un-science-y choices
Not the simplest concept can these jokers catch
They lead deaf-men through darkness and yet we lost the match
We supporters of science, we believers in proof
We seekers of knowledge and revealers of truth
Its just one election, for two years we’ll be vexed
Till then more than ever, this week in science…
Will be coming up next…

Driving The Climate
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab researchers looked at data regarding how well different surfaces on Earth emit in the far-infrared spectrum of light, and determined that it is probably much more influential on global heating than has been thought.

D’Oh Clymatia
Seriously, people. The climate is screwed unless we make changes, and the sooner the better.

Connecting Humanity
University of Washington scientists have successfully shown that they can send signals from one person’s brain over the internet to activate hand movements in another person.

Big ol’ mammal
Ancient groundhog that lived during the time of the dinosaurs weighed in at about 20 pounds; big for a mammal of that time. But, can we say… dino snack?

Smelly women
Anatomical study shows that women have more cells in their olfactory organs, explaining why they have a better sense of smell.

The dumb vote
Psychologists find that people are more likely to vote for healthier looking candidates over intelligence.

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Fat For Brains
It turns out that fat in your diet is good for your brain.

Brains On Fat And Sugar
Fat and a certain sugar are essential for neuronal stem cells to continue dividing healthily. Interestingly, animals lose this sugar as they age.

Financial Advisors?
Investment professionals are no better at investing than educated lay-people.

The Telomerator
A new tool for synthetic biology makes it possible to break circular DNA into linear pieces so that experiments can be
more closely aligned with the biology of higher organisms.

Life On Water
How much water does life need to exist and survive? A new study suggests that microbial life requires a water activity measure (related to humidity) of at least 0.6, versus a measure of 1.0 for pure water. This new measurement suggests life might be capable of living in many seemingly arid environments.

Lingering Smoke
Researchers found that chemicals left over from cigarette smoke that attach to dust particles, walls, and other surfaces in a smoker’s home, called third-hand smoke, linger for hours after a cigarette is smoked and may have significant health impacts.

Go Fever?
Capping off a terrible week for private space flight, the Vigin Galactic Space ShipTwo crashed last week killing one pilot and injuring another as a result of an uncommanded change in the ship’s conformation.

Ebola Update
The WHO has revised its estimates downward as improvements in the numbers of cases are being seen in Liberia. However, it is being conservative in its estimates as not all cases or deaths are being reported.

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About the Author

I'm the host of this little science show.