08 August, 2018 – Episode 682 – This Week in Science (TWIS) Podcast


Interview on Crows w/ Kaeli Swift, Star Light Explosion, Safety In Numbers, Koala Junk, Blinded By Blues, Viking Walrus Ivory, Prozac Nature, Bee Youthful, Little Dog Complex, Exercise And Cocaine, 44 New Planets, And Much More…

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Everyone has opinions…
but not everyone forms them in a trustworthy manner.
There are several things to keep in mind before having an opinion:
1) Are there facts supporting my opinion?
2) Other peoples opinions are not facts, and therefore cannot be used to support my opinion
3) If other people have this opinion, where did they get it?
4) Why do so many or so few people share this opinion?
5) Why do I have/ or want to have this opinion?
6) Is there a reason that me having this opinion is useful to somebody who is not me?
7) Understand that regardless of how well researched an opinion is, it could still be wrong.
Despite the fact that most of the opinions we currently hold could possibly be wrong…
There is a method of fact gathering that allows for a high success rate in opinion forming.
The scientific method.
Yes, there are those that are of the opinion that science is biased,
and they are right!
Because in science, opinions don’t matter at all…
not in the least.
The scientific method is heavily biased against opinions,
and in favor of facts.
So if your opinions are based on science,
they are based on a method that has filtered out incorrect opinions
before you even got around to forming one of your own,
and what’s more…
Your opinion could still be wrong,
but much less wrong than if you had started your opinion forming anywhere else…
And as always,
the very best place to start forming opinions about anything is…
This Week in Science…
Coming up Next!

Interview with Kaeli Swift
Kaeli Swift is a PhD candidate at the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington. She studies thanatology of crows.

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This Week in What Has Science Done for me Lately?!?
“Hi! Here is my “What Has Science Done for Me…Lately?” entry:

I love dogs and I have a pack of dogs living with me and my kids. One of the wonderful things about science are all of the amazing types of medicine we have developed for our furry friends. There are vaccinations, pest control and more. Also, the fact that dogs are one species and so different from one another in size, color, furriness, etc, always blows my mind. I enjoy thinking about how they’ve been with us for so long (as scientists discovered by looking at the genetic clock) and how we’ve most likely influenced each others’ lives. Taking my dogs to the vet means that I get to spend even more quality time with my canines. ?

Thanks for your awesome show! I love what each of you brings and how you have unique voices and perspectives!
–Susan Barnum”

Star Light Explosion
A mass ejection has been seen on another star for the first time!

Safety In Numbers
Gut viruses travel in packs in membrane-bound vesicles for success.

Koala Junk
Will retroviral DNA in koalas teach us about our own genome?

Blinded by the blues
Blue light damages eyes in a way that actively causes macrodegeneration.

Ivory trade
Vikings of Greenland dominated the ivory trade according to walrus tusk remains.

Nobody likes a depressed starling
Male starlings sing less and are more agressive to females who have been accidentally filled with antidrepressants. What does this
mean for birds, and us?

The fountain of youth might “bee” real
And it has something to do with bee poop, royal jelly, and our own microbiome.

Small dogs and their “little” complexes
Small dogs lift their legs higher to mark trees and walls like a bigger dog might. Don’t worry little bichon, you be you!

Exercise Beats Cocaine
In stressed out rats.

Boom – 44 new planets

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About the Author

I'm the host of this little science show.