14 March, 2018 – Episode 662 – This Week in Science (TWIS) Podcast


No New Neurons, Different Signals, Nursemaid Neanderthals, Barn Mouse Domesticity, Team Termite!, A Hermit’s Bones, Bt Benefits, Detecting The Undetectable, Flying Fossil, Raven Ravings, Spider Gifts, And Much More…

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In the brief history of time we have shared together on this show…
We rarely have had to say goodbye to an influential intellect
as impactful as Stephen Hawking.
Partly because that sort of intelligence is rare…
But also because celebrity is so rarely linked to intelligence.
Between the pregnant pauses of an 1980’s synthesized voice…
We waited with anticipation,
and often wound up astonished and amazed
At the seemingly effortless communication of the immensely complicated…
At the insightful often whimsical talking tours of our universe…
By one who understood it better than most of us will ever comprehend…
In his memory we offer these moments of science
Coming Up Next

Hawking Radiation
May he radiate in peace.

No New Neurons
The jury is still out, but a recent study suggests that adult humans do not grow new brain cells.

Different Signals
Astronomers find not dark matter at the center of our galaxy, but really old stars instead.

The future of nursing…
may be waiting in our past.

Which came first? The barn cat or the barn mouse?
Wild mice domesticated themselves, when given food, shelter, and some warmth. What’s more, they started to look like pet mice! These domesticated species are looking less and less intentional… take that, human hubris?

Old termites take one for the team
Older soldiers take on the front line, saving the young, spry individuals to guard the inner-most sections of the nest. But, they don’t appear to be better or worse fighters, so termites just seem to see the elderly as disposable. Yikes…

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This Week in What Has Science Done for me Lately?!?
“Hi Dr. Kiki,

First, I would like to say that I love the show and have been
listening for years. I don’t have the financial means to donate, but I
try and get everyone I know to watch/listen to the show. Now, On to the
topic at hand.

First off, I would not be alive without the involvement of
medical science. Apparently, my mother and I did not get along to well
during gestation. Without the help of doctors and advances of medical
treatments I likely would have died before I was born.

When I was a kid I spent most of my time watching/reading
science fiction. I was always more drawn to realistic sci/fi such as
Arthur C Clarke. A trait I have yet to out grow. Thus I have had
multiple decades of of entertainment and thought provoking stories.

I’ve always had a knack for technology. Rather it be
electronics or computers. Computers really just being very complex
electronics. Thus I have spent most of my adult years in the computer
repair field. The advances in physics and technology have left me in a
perpetual state of learning. Something I enjoy way more now then I did
as a kid.

Both of my kids have had life saving medical treatments.
Without which I would not have the two most precious things in the
world to me. My girls have grown to be amazing people. My oldest is
wanting to move to California for college and considering UC Davis as a
likely destination for a degree in genetics. I think in large part to
listening to your show.

What has science done for me lately? My life, my kids lives, a
career, and basically everything I enjoy and hold dear in this life.

Thanks again for an awesome show,

Rediscovered phantom
Footprints in the earth are corroborated by bones found in a hermit’s collection.

Bt Benefits
A study suggests that Bt corn has a lot of benefits.

What do spacecraft, newborns and endangered shellfish have in common?
Bacteria, of course.

Flying Fossil
Archaeopteryx might have flown like a pheasant.

Raven Ravings
Raven calls communicate age and sex of the caller to those listening.

Chinese Space Junk
It’s falling to Earth later this month.

Twinning No More
The results are in. Going to space changes DNA.

Hunting spider ladies are not fooled by flashy wrapping paper, they only care about the quality of gift inside.

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About the Author

I'm the host of this little science show.