science

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Rare 'Dragon' Babies Hatch in Slovenian Cave

It's a' rare opportunity for science'

(Newser) - After keeping a constant eye on a clutch of eggs from a rare, subterranean salamander, biologists at Postojna Cave in Slovenia have their reward. Two baby olms have hatched—something that has never been seen outside of a lab, the Christian Science Monitor reports. It's a "rare opportunity...

We Read the Human Genome; Next Up, Writing It?

Project would enable creation of synthetic people

(Newser) - Scientists are contemplating a big follow-up to the Human Genome Project: Where that project essentially sought to read human DNA, this new endeavor would involve writing it. The idea, which is "spurring intrigue and concern in the life sciences community," as the New York Times reports, could enable...

Palin Says She's Got As Much Science Cred as Bill Nye

'He's a kids' show actor, he's not a scientist': Palin at climate-change-denying event

(Newser) - Sarah Palin has taken on rapper Azealia Banks , Lena Dunham , and, of course, President Obama , but now she's taking on science itself via one of its most well-known representatives. "Bill Nye is as much a scientist as I am," Palin said Thursday at a Capitol Hill event,...

Horse Manure Helps Crack Ancient Military Mystery

Researchers think they know where Hannibal crossed the Alps

(Newser) - Ace history students might remember that Hannibal led his Carthagian army across the Alps around 200BC and soundly defeated the Roman army in one of the most epic military maneuvers of all time. But not even actual historians can tell you with any degree of certainty where Hannibal crossed those...

How to ID a Terrorist: V Signs?
 How to ID a Terrorist: V Signs? 
NEW STUDY

How to ID a Terrorist: V Signs?

Scientists say everyone's hand geometry is different and may help ID terrorists

(Newser) - Trying to ID masked terrorists appearing in propaganda or execution videos is one of counterterrorism's biggest obstacles. But a researcher at Jordan's Mutah University and his team think they've found one physical tell that could prove invaluable: the victory sign formed by making the letter "V"...

Science Paper Citing 'Creator' Sparks Outrage

PLoS ONE retracts article about the human hand

(Newser) - Think a "Divine Creator" belongs in science? Well, a peer-reviewed paper that mentions "the Creator" sparked such an outcry that it's been retracted with an apology, the Guardian reports. The paper, about the human hand's design and dexterity, mentions the "Creator" more than once. "...

What Astronaut Scott Kelly Will Do as Soon as He Lands

His record-breaking trip was amazing

(Newser) - Scott Kelly has been hurtling through the cosmos on the International Space Station for nearly a year (340 days to be exact—a record), but on Tuesday, the NASA astronaut and his partner, Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko, will finally head home. ScienceAlert has the emotional video of Kelly handing the...

Scientists: There May Be a Giant 9th Planet Past Pluto

Sorry, Pluto—'Planet 9' may be more of a 'massive perturber' than you

(Newser) - Pluto is gonna be PO'd. While the dwarf planet tries to fight its way back into the good graces of Those Who Deem What Counts as a Planet, another icy orb even further out may snatch that designation first. Astronomers at the California Institute of Technology say a giant...

Science Students Have Bad News for Cinderella, Superman

Physics don't support either of them, apparently

(Newser) - Sorry Cinderella, you never would have married the handsome Prince. And Superman? Bringing Lois Lane back from the dead would have destroyed all life on Earth. These are among the hard-bitten conclusions students reached in an online physics journal—and not only because writing about imaginary characters is fun, National ...

Soak Up Sunlight: It's the Year's Shortest Day

The winter solstice is here

(Newser) - Mondays always feel longer, but that's not the only reason today may be dragging. Yes, it's the winter solstice, meaning Northern Hemisphere residents will be tilted as far from the sun as they will be all year—so it's also the shortest day and the longest night,...

A Sophomoric Prank Lurks on the Periodic Table

Check out the abbreviation for plutonium

(Newser) - There’s nothing funny about plutonium. After all, it’s the stuff that makes nuclear weapons go boom. Nonetheless, the man credited with discovering the element named for the dwarf planet Pluto did manage to use the occasion to sneak a little levity onto the periodic table of elements, National ...

Scientists Test Best Cheese for Grilled Cheese Sandwich

It's all about how casein proteins clump together when cheese melts

(Newser) - Looking for the perfect cheese for the ultimately gooey, perfectly melted grilled cheese sandwich? Good news: Scientists with the American Chemical Society have put out a three-minute video from the society's "Reactions" series on YouTube all about that very subject. And the winners are ... gouda, gruyére, or...

Scientists Create Artificial Skin That Mimics Human Touch

It could be big news for people with prosthetic limbs

(Newser) - Pretty soon, you won't be able to hide your limp handshake from someone with a prosthetic arm. At least that's the hope of the team of researchers at Stanford University who developed artificial skin that can sense touch. Engadget describes the team's invention—published Thursday in Science...

Pee Theory, Stung Penis Win Ig Nobel Prizes

'Huh?' you may ask, in every language

(Newser) - If you're willing to let a bee sting every part of your body in the name of science, you may have what it takes to win an Ig Nobel Prize. The annual awards ceremony for "improbable research" was held last night, the BBC reports, and a Cornell University...

Americans Have Big Gaps in Their Knowledge of Science

Only 6% got all 12 questions right in basic quiz

(Newser) - Most Americans have a good grasp of some areas of scientific knowledge but are relatively clueless on others, according to Pew Research Center analysis based on a quiz that you may wish to try out here before reading on—and if you get a perfect score, congratulate yourself on being...

STEM Shocker: Intel Drops Science Contest

Company has been supporter of prestigious high school competition since 1998

(Newser) - "Wanted: Respected corporation with deep pockets and deep roots in the STEM arena to take over prestigious science and math competition." That's basically the ad the Society for Science and the Public now has to place to replace Intel, which has announced it will no longer sponsor...

Here's What Caused Earth's First Mass Extinction

Let's see what happened to the docile Ediacarans

(Newser) - Biologists have long debated how the planet's first mass extinction took place 540 million years ago. Was it a huge meteorite or terrifying volcanic eruption, typical of Earth's other mass extinctions? Nope, per a recent paper that says it offers the first "critical test" of the theory...

Whistled Language Brings Surprising Brain Discovery

People must use both sides of their brain to understand it, a first

(Newser) - The rapidly disappearing "bird language" that is spoken—or whistled, actually—by about 10,000 residents in the mountains of Turkey is changing the way scientists think about language and the brain. The left hemisphere has always been dominant when interpreting language, be it spoken, written, signed, or even...

World's '1st Flower' Dates Back 130M Years

The oldest known flowering plant, found in Spain, was aquatic

(Newser) - The world's oldest known flower dating back 130 million years is an aquatic species called Montsechia found fossilized in limestone deposits in Spain. But it wouldn't necessarily be recognized as a flower today, given it didn't boast petals or nectar-producing structures. "The fruit contains a single...

Pope Blamed Jews for Medieval Quake That Moved River

Magnitude-5.8 quake put Po River where it is today

(Newser) - When an earthquake struck Italy in 1570, Pope Pius V blamed the destruction on God's supposed wrath against the Jews. Less predictably, the quake also shifted the course of Italy's longest river by 25 miles. The magnitude-5.8 quake struck near the northern city of Ferrara in 1570,...

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