Science

There’s no such thing as a ‘habitable Super-Earth’ (Synopsis) [Starts With A Bang]

“How vast those Orbs must be, and how inconsiderable this Earth, the Theatre upon which all our mighty Styles, all our Navigations, and all our Wars are transacted, is when compared to them.” -Christiaan Huygens It was fairly a surprise when we started discovering all the exoplanets that have been out there. Although there’s a huge gap in between a ...

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The Meaning of Antebellum Politics in America vis-a-vis the Current Collapse of The Republic. [Greg Laden's Blog]

I am reading Group of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin, whom you might know from her occasional and usually informative appearances on a variety of Television news shows as a ranking Presidential Historian. I started reading it simply because I wanted to see in some detail what was going on in American politics in ...

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The annals of “I’m not antivaccine,” part 23: “Vaccine injury” and waterboarding [Respectful Insolence]

It’s tough to think that it is been almost seven years because I began a recurring series that I like to refer to as The annals of “I’m not antivaccine.” Certainly, this will be the 23rd entry in this distinct series, whose objective is to analyze why you shouldn’t take it seriously when specific antivaccine activists deny that they are ...

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Dubai Plans a Taxi That Skips the Driver, and the Roads

By RUSSELL GOLDMAN February 14, 2017 Like a scene from “The Jetsons,” commuters in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, could quickly climb aboard automated flying taxis, soaring more than busy streets and past the desert city’s gleaming skyscrapers, all — quite actually — at the push of a button. Passenger drones, capable of carrying a single rider and a tiny suitcase, ...

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Is the ‘Anthropocene’ Epoch a Condemnation of Human Interference — or a Call for More?

February 14, 2017 1st Words By WESLEY YANG Possibly you have noticed, amid the hot invective and dry mockery of day-to-day events in your social-media feeds, reports of the glaciers melting at each and every pole. Arctic ice cover reached record lows this summer and fall, even though in Antarctica, we saw the continuing enlargement of an already enormous crack ...

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Grisly Cleanup Follows Deaths of 400 Whales in New Zealand

By GRAHAM BOWLEY February 13, 2017 After the strandings comes the gruesome cleanup. The New Zealand Department of Conservation mentioned early Tuesday that it had to use excavators and dump trucks to move the carcasses of far more than 200 pilot whales away from the coastline, exactly where they had become beached, and onto the sand dunes. “They are in the dunes ...

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Sharp Rise Reported in Older Americans’ Use of Multiple Psychiatric Drugs

By BENEDICT CAREY February 13, 2017 The number of retirement-age Americans taking at least three psychiatric drugs far more than doubled amongst 2004 and 2013, even though virtually half of them had no mental health diagnosis on record, researchers reported on Monday. The new evaluation, primarily based on data from doctors’ office visits, suggests that inappropriate prescribing to older men and women ...

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Wind Power Surpasses Hydroelectric in a Crucial Measure

By DIANE CARDWELL February 9, 2017 The wind industry crossed an essential threshold in the United States final year, exceeding the generating capacity of hydroelectric power for the initial time, according to the main sector trade group, the American Wind Power Association. The nation’s fleet of dams has extended stood as the prime renewable energy source, but there has been little industry ...

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