09 October, 2019 – Episode 742 – Science Nobelity


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What is in the This Week in Science Podcast?

2020 Nobel Prize Winners, Funding Black Scientists, The Resistance, New Antibiotic?, Drone Whale Scale, Documentary Drive, Human Salamander, False Song Memories, Mold Pigs, Zebra Stripe Update, Solar Pressure, New Moons, Bird Pee, Can-O-Marrow, And Much More…

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The following program has persisted out a love of science
A belief that the discovery of scientific knowledge
Application of that knowledge in the world
And a constant effort and dedication to learn more
Make the world a better place to live.

Through science, we accomplish the goals humanity sets for itself.

But science is in trouble.
There are powerful people who simply do not want scientists to speak publicly,
want to prevent them from sharing their knowledge.

Not that this is anything new, for science has always been in trouble this way.

Religion was an early and persistent threat…
Demanding, through violent retribution,
that no progress be made in science that did not capitulate the prevailing dogma.

Currently the threat is political…
with redacted reports, researcher retaliation, and silencincing of results…
happening at an increasingly inhibiting pace…

Maybe what we need now is a new legal framework…
a constitutional amendment for science.
A protection for the funding and findings of science.
One that separates once and for all,
the political interests of politicians and their donors…
From the work of scientists.
A separation of science and state.
A freedom of publication act.
One that once and for all prevents the willful disregard of scientific findings by political appointees…
And instead puts the knowledge in the hands of
This Week in Science,
Coming Up Next…

Let’s talk about science!

2020 Nobel Prize Winners
The parade of male scientists has returned! While the science celebrated this year at the annual Nobel Prize awards is absolutely worthy of such honor, sadly no women were among the recipients for 2019. We hope for greater female representation in awards such as the Nobel Prize in years to come.

Funding Black Scientists
An analysis of the NIH award process determined that three factors were key in whether or not black scientists received funding. Primary among them was the proposed topic of study. Further research into why this is the case is necessary.

Antibiotic resistance found in food animals
The resistance is growing.

New antibiotic found
There is good news on the horizon, hopefully.

And, now it’s time for Blair’s Animal Corner!

Drones weighing whales? Now I’ve heard it all!
Not weighing, per se, but estimating weight. Another win for drones in conservation work!

That nature doc is more than entertaining!
Research shows that nature documentaries like Planet Earth do drive interest in animals and conservation, though it does not appear to drive donations. Is this a win or a loss for conservation organizations and the wildlife they protect?

Support us on Patreon!

This Week in What Has Science Done for me Lately?!?

“Science has granted me POWER!

Solar power to be exact. Thanks to advances in photovoltaic materials, and of course the sun, I’m now feeding energy into the grid during the day, and getting credit for the power I pull back out at night.

Not only is this good for my power bill (if all goes well it should be about 0 for electricity on average), but during the day when air conditioning is straining the grid I’m helping contribute, not just adding to the load. Not to mention lowering emissions is a little bit good.

So thanks science for figuring out how to make photons into electrons in a way I can afford to do on top of my house!
Tom Merritt

Let us know what science has done for you lately, and we will read it on the show!

Now, let’s continue with SCIENCE NEWS!…

Human regeneration
Cartilage might not be as useless when damaged as we thought.

False Song Memories
Researchers implanted false memories of songs into birds heads.

Mold Pigs
Somewhere between tardigrades and … mold pigs existed.

Zebra Stripe Update
Cows painted to look like zebras are bitten less often by biting insects.

Solar Pressure
We are traveling in a bubble through space.

New Moons
Saturn has officially gained 20 moons, and you can help name them.

What’s in bird pee?
The answer may surprise you. If you are a biologist.

Can o marrow
It did a body good.

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