keith rowand

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5 of the Craziest Science Facts Out There, Part 2

1. How heavy do you think a cloud is?<p>The typical cumulus cloud weighs 216,000 pounds, according to science correspondent for NPR Robert Krulwich. …

Cutting carbs isn't a cure-all for brain disease

Dr. David Perlmutter, author of the bestselling book, <i>Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth about Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar — Your Brain's Silent Killers</i>, says everything you know about food is wrong. According to Perlmutter, the carbohydrates you eat every day are destroying your brain, gluten is as …

Making Someone Love You: Science vs. the Supernatural

Michael Busby is a Houston-area lawyer who has just filed a lawsuit against self-described psychic Melena Thorn, alleging that Thorn defrauded him of $2,700, which he gave to her in cash with the promise that the money would be "cleansed" and returned to him, at which point he was to put the money …

Loneliness

Gut bacteria lose their tails to evade antibodies

New research reveals the complex dynamic between gut bacteria and the immune system that keeps proteins from flagellin—bacterial tails—under …

Tech and Science

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Lake on Mars could have teemed with microbial life

Minerals identified by Nasa's Curiosity Mars rover suggest lake contained water of low salinity and neutral pH suitable for life<p>An enormous crater near the northern plains of Mars once harboured an ancient lake that could have supported microbial life, Nasa scientists have claimed.<p>The freshwater …

APOD: Humanity Explores the Solar System (2013 Apr 30) Illustration Credit & License: Olaf Frohn (The Planetary Society) http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap130430.html Explanation: What spacecraft is humanity currently using to explore our Solar System? Presently, every inner planet has at least one robotic explorer, while several others are monitoring our Sun, some are mapping Earth's Moon, a few are chasing asteroids and comets, one is orbiting Saturn, and several are even heading out into deep space. The above illustration gives more details, with the inner Solar System depicted on the upper right and the outer Solar System on the lower left. Given the present armada, our current epoch might become known as the time when humanity first probed its own star system. Sometimes widely separated spacecraft act together as an InterPlanetary Network to determine the direction of distant explosions by noting when each probe detects high energy photons. Future spacecraft milestones, as indicated along the bottom of the graphic, include Dawn reaching Ceres, the largest object in the asteroid belt, and New Horizons reaching Pluto, both in 2015. Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=130430 Starship Asterisk* • On This Day in APOD http://asterisk.apod.com/view_retro.php?date=0430

Why scientists trained locusts to recognize odors

To learn more about how the brain can process multiple odors all at once, scientists trained locusts to respond to a specific smell.<p>Locusts have a …

Genius materials on the ISS

With proper coaxing, molecules in microgravity can assemble themselves into forms with surprising properties. This new NASA ScienceCast video …

Particles

New research maps the secret structure of the sun

A discovery that could help explain everything from solar storms to sunspots<p><i>The phenomenon of solar flares, as seen above, might be better understood thanks to the discovery of giant cells.</i><p>Nearly half a century ago, scientists started to unravel the structure of the sun and determine how solar …

21 Science Fictions That Became Science Facts In 2013

If only Isaac Asimov could see us now. There's an old saying that science fiction is really just predicting — or helping prevent — the future.

Sperm block could lead to birth control pill for men

A new way to block the transportation of sperm during ejaculation may lead to a contraceptive for men.<p>Scientists say that complete male infertility …

Cassini Captures Amazing High-Res Animation of Saturn's Mysterious Hexagon

NASA's Cassini mission has captured an incredible high-resolution animation of the psychedelic jet stream known as Saturn's Northern Hexagon.<p>The …

Forget the Asian Carp. Here’s a New Great Lakes Invasive Species to Worry About

Conservationists and wildlife officials have been policing the porous border between the Mississippi watershed and the Great Lakes for years. Their …

Discovery of oldest human DNA in Spanish cave sheds light on evolution

Researchers have read strands of ancient DNA teased from the thigh bone of an early human who died 400,000 years ago in what is now northern Spain.<p>The genetic material was pieced together from a clutch of cells found in bone fragments – the oldest human remains ever to yield their genetic code.<p>The …

Experimental camera captures 3D images in near-total darkness

It's one of the most basic rules of photography: to get a picture, you need light. But a new MIT project has built a camera that flies in the face of that logic. The project's new stealth camera can assemble 3D images from one photon at a time, working in near-total darkness. In the images above, …

More Clues to Life in the Oceans — on an Alien Moon, That Is

Europa<p>The search for life beyond Earth has generally focused on places that are as much like our home as possible. That’s why the Kepler space …

New lawsuit seeks 'legal personhood' for a chimpanzee

An animal rights group is taking to the courts in an effort to seek personhood for a chimpanzee. In a lawsuit filed today in Fulton County, New York, the Nonhuman Rights Project demands that "Tommy" — a privately owned chimp who lives on a reindeer farm in the state — be freed from his owners and …

How the Brain Creates Personality: A New Theory

Are you a mover, a perceiver, a stimulator, or an adapter? Modes of thinking can be understood in terms of how the top and bottom—rather than right and left—parts of the brain interact.<p>It is possible to examine any object—including a brain—at different levels. Take the example of a building. If we …

Heavy atoms help give black hole jets their power

Jets of a black hole known as 4U1630-47 contains heavy particles, such as iron and nickel. It helps explain why black hole jets pack such a …

WIRED Space Photo of the Day 2013

PhysicsWhy Do You Feel Lighter at the Top of a Ferris Wheel?<p>Author: Rhett AllainRhett Allain<p>EcologyHow Plastic Straws Slip Through the Cracks of …

Quantum wells flash light without magnets

Spontaneous bursts of light from a solid block illuminate the unusual way interacting quantum particles behave when they are driven far from …

Can Red Wine Really Heal Cancer And Prolong Your Life?

Well, how much can you drink? (It better be a lot.)<p>The health benefits of resveratrol, a compound found in the skin of grapes (and thus in red wine), have long been known. Studies have indicated that it serves as an antioxidant, that it has anti-tumor properties, that it can help you live longer, …

Clinical Trials

Kurdish Militias Drive Out Jihadists, Bring Stability Back to Parts of Syria

In the chaos of civil war, Syria’s Kurds are managing to do the unthinkable—drive out foreign fighters, avoid provoking Assad and start establishing …

How Scientists Could Watch Brain Chemicals Through The Skull

One team is trying to develop a non-invasive way of tracking neurotransmitters as they move through a living brain.<p>Researchers have discovered a way to see chemicals at work behind bone. In the future, they hope to develop their technique as a way of watching chemical messages as they blip through …

Northwestern University

The Higgs boson does a new trick (probably)

At a seminar at CERN this morning, Aliaksandr Pranko announced an interesting new result on the Higgs boson from the ATLAS experiment.<p>In brief - we know the Higgs boson is there, and is involved in giving mass to some fundamental particles. Today we saw strong evidence that it gives mass to all of …

How This Tiny Plastic Box Could Help Humans Inhabit Other Planets [Video]

Launching even small experiments into space can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Most of the money goes toward a spaceship or rocket ride to beat Earth's gravity, but another big chunk is the experimental equipment. Just one 10-centimeter cube in which to cram experiments, for example, can set a …