15 May, 2019 – Episode 721 – Understanding Antarctic Ice


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What is in the This Week in Science Podcast?

Interview on Antarctic Ice with Dr. Christina Hulbe, Moon Science, Good Whale Genes, Toothy Human History, Sticky Scandinavians, The STD Advantage, Learning Rewards, Artificial Number Sense, Plastic Proof, Faster Walker, Catapult Spiders, And Much More…

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When wondering through the world take note.
Because everything you see is noteworthy in some way.
Yes yes, there is too much to information all at once to pay attention to everything.
But eventually you may find yourself focusing in on something of interest.
And if you pursue this interest it can with time and study make you an expert on the subject.
This of course does not mean that you will know it all,
but your knowledge will not be alone…
An ecologist might not know much about psychology,
but know a great deal about the woodland creatures that inhabit a forest.
The geologist may not see the forest for the trees,
but have insights on the history of the region and the dynamics of the dirt beneath the roots and leaves.
If the astronomer seems moody on a sunny day,
it’s just because they are waiting Impatiently for a better view of the milky way.
The physicist can appear an unlikely sort of explorer,
staying inside hunched over a keyboard eyes glued to a screen for several hours…
But they might be adventuring anywhere
from the big bang to the tiniest traces of subatomic particles escaping a super-collider.
And while the psychologist might not know much about quantum micro gravity
They might understand ways in which an ecologist might better communicate to their spouse.
And at some point,
when enough of us have pursued our interests to the point of expertise…
We can share our insights with each other.
And when that day comes we will all know more about the world around us
than any one of us had time to take notice of alone…
Because we are never alone as along as we have
This Week In Science
Coming Up Next…

First up, an interview with Dr. Christina Hulbe!

Dr. Hulbe is a geophysicist who studies how and why polar ice sheets change over time. She is Professor and Dean of Surveying at the University of Otago in New Zealand, and the programme lead for an investigation into the Vulnerability of the Ross Ice Shelf in West Antarctica to the influences of a warming world.

Check out the Ross Ice Shelf Programme Instagram page!

And, here is Dr. Hulbe’s Ted Talk!

Support us on Patreon!

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

“Hi Dr. Kiki, Justin, and last but not least, Blair,
As always, I enjoy every week with you.
My reason for writing again is scary, but mostly happy!
A few weeks ago my fiance had a medical emergency. We were at home and she had gone unconscious and stopped breathing. I heard something odd before she collapsed.
I called 911 immediately on my cell phone.
Cell phone technology meant I could stay with her, and talk to the operator at the same time.
Even with first aid training it helped to have the extra medical help, provided by many years of medical science talking me through it.
Thanks science!
EMT showed up still would not have been as quick a response without science!
She woke up and got taken to the hospital to have many tests, which got us a diagnosis. While it was not the greatest of news there are many treatments thanks to science!
All I can say is science saved her life literally!
Thank you for continuing the great work you all do.
Good science too you.
–Ben Bignell”

Let’s continue with Some Science News From This Week in Science

A cooling moon and the Earth’s gravitational influence combine to create lunar seismic quakes and fault lines.

The Chinese lunar lander might have detected soil made up of material representing the composition of the lunar mantle.

Good Whale Genes
A study out of Arizona State University discovered that whales evolved specific genetic cancer-risk reducing adaptations that differ from the mechanism evolved by elephants.

Neandertal teeth
A toothy analysis sharpens our view of divergence with current humans pushing it further into the past.

Sticky Swedish Study
Ancient chewing gum illuminated 10,000 year old DNA!

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

Do you have a sexually transmitted infection, or are you just happy to see me?
Having an STI and giving it to your mate could be an advantageous methodology for some males. Great, yet another reason for women to fear sex…

Learning and achieving rewards are related but not linked.
For the same reason a smart student could flunk a test, testing animals in learned behavior with rewards present could be misleading.

And, finally, Some Quick Science News Stories To End The Show

Artificial Number Sense
An AI neural network developed “number sense” that closely matches neural activity in monkeys.

Plastic Proof
A prominent photosynthetic bacteria species was shown to reduce its oxygen production when exposed to plastic leachates suggesting plastic in the oceans could influence atmospheric oxygen availability.

Faster is better…
When we are walking.

Holy Catapulting Spider, Batman!
Just when you thought spiders couldn’t get any more terrifying…

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I'm the host of this little science show.