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Sci-News Roundup May 25 - May 31, 2024

General Interest  Cosmos   Innovation   Health  Nature  Environment  Climate

SftPublic programs are recorded, broadcast & distributed by Belmont Media Center TV & are uploaded to SftPublic website event pages and YouTube channel

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Upcoming Events

June 11 The Battle for the Future of Food (Forum Network webinar)

June 18 New Directions in Particle Physics (Forum Network webinar)

Recent Events

May 14 Our Expanding Universe: The DESI Project's First Results (FN webinar video)

May 06 Kingdom of Play (Forum Network webinar video)

Apr 23 How Effective Are Vitamin D Supplements? (Belmont Media Ctr video)

Mar 19 Biodiversity in the Sixth Mass Extinction (Belmont Media Ctr video)


The Higgs Boson's Most Captivating Puzzle Still Remains

Big Think, May 28, 2024

Predicted way back in the 1960s, the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012 completed the Standard Model. Here’s why it remains fascinating.

Small, Cheap, and Weird: A History of the Microcar

Ars Technica, May 27, 2024

The microcar is a singular little thing—its job is to frugally take one person (or maybe two people) where they need to go while taking up as little space as possible. But where did these tiny wonders come from? And do they have a future?

The Art of Maths and the Maths of Art

Plus Maths, April 30, 2024

Mathematics is a creative pursuit so it's not surprising that there are communalities between maths and art in all its forms.

Ancient Egyptian Attempts to Treat Cancer Seen in Nearly 5,000-Year-Old Skull

Cosmos, May 29, 2024

It is known that as an early civilisation, the ancient Egyptians were skilled in medical practices. Historical records note that they could identify, describe and treat diseases and traumatic injuries. They even build prostheses and inserted dental fillings. The new study, published in Frontiers in Medicine, suggests they may have even tried to treat cancers.

How Failure Has Made Mathematics Stronger

Quanta, May 22, 2024

The topologist Danny Calegari discusses the inevitability of disappointment in math, and how to learn from it.


Birth of Universe's Earliest Galaxies Observed for First Time

Phys.Org, May 23, 2024

For the first time in the history of astronomy, researchers at the Niels Bohr Institute have witnessed the birth of three of the universe's absolute earliest galaxies, somewhere between 13.3 and 13.4 billion years ago.

Fish Are Adapting to Weightlessness on the Chinese Space Station

Universe Today, May 24, 2024

Four zebrafish are alive and well after nearly a month in space aboard China’s Tiangong space station. As part of an experiment testing the development of vertebrates in microgravity, the fish live and swim within a small habitat aboard the station.

We’ve Finally Seen Matter Plunge into a Black Hole

Scientific American, May 23, 2024

For the first time, scientists observed matter’s free fall into a black hole’s “plunging region”

Why Physicists Now Question the Fate of the Universe

Big Think, May 22, 2024

For nearly 25 years, we thought we knew how the Universe would end. Now, new measurements point to a profoundly different conclusion.

Active Venus Volcanoes Revealed Again in Magellan Data

EarthSky, May 27, 2024

Scientists have found two more pieces of direct geological evidence of recent volcanic activity on the planet next-inward from Earth, Venus.  


Hidden Google Maps Features Everyone Should Be Using

Lifehacker, May 24, 2024

While the app is pretty good with its default settings, if you go deeper, you'll unlock a treasure trove of useful features. From better walking directions to incognito mode, there's a bunch to Google Maps just below the surface.

How to Clear Your Browser’s Cache, and Why You Should

Wired, May 22, 2024

All browsers automatically store data locally, which speeds up web browsing but can cause problems too. Here’s how to do something about it.

“Absolute Miracle” – New Recycling Method Could Help Solve One of the World’s Biggest Climate Challenges

SciTech Daily, May 28 2024

Cambridge researchers have developed a groundbreaking method to produce low-emission concrete, potentially revolutionizing the construction industry and aiding global efforts to achieve net-zero emissions.

Charge Your Laptop in a Minute or Your EV in 10? Super-Capacitors Can Help

Science Daily, May 24, 2024

Imagine if your dead laptop or phone could charge in a minute or if an electric car could be fully powered in 10 minutes. New research could lead to such advances.

How a Simple Fix Could Double the Size of the U.S. Electricity Grid

Washington Post, May 28, 2024

Rewiring miles of power lines could make space for data centers, AI and a boom in renewables.


What Makes a Healthful Drink of Water?

EatRight, April 24, 2024

Why are there so many types of bottled water? Which is the healthiest? And if tap water is best and least expensive, are the rest just a waste of money?

Is Omega-3 Oil Good or Bad for Us – And Does It Matter Where It Is From?

The Guardian, May 24, 2024

Research shows fish oil may increase risk of people developing a heart condition or stroke.

7 Kettlebell Exercises to Include in Your Workout

Healthline, May 21, 2024

Kettlebell workouts can target several muscle groups at once in a short time. They can help improve your strength, power, and cardiovascular fitness.

Is Arthritis Avoidable?

New York Times, April 18, 2023

Joint pain, stiffness and swelling aren’t always inevitable results of aging, experts say. Here’s what you can do to reduce your risk.

8 Health Benefits of Collagen

EveryDay Health, May 07, 2024

From skin and bones to gut health and more, here’s how the trendy supplement may boost your health and well-being.


The Mystery of Why Left-Handers Are So Much Rarer

BBC, October 03, 2016

Relatively few people are lefties, and it’s a puzzle why. Still, the science of handedness is revealing fascinating insights about you – from how it could change the way you think, to the fact that you might be ‘left-eared’.

Orcas Aren’t Attacking Boats — They’re Just Playful Teens, Scientists Say

Washington Post, May 25, 2024

What might seem like killer whales orchestrating vengeful and coordinated attacks on ships is probably a playful fad among bored teen orcas, scientists say.

Why Did Homo Sapiens Emerge in Africa?

Live Science, May 26, 2024

Our human ancestors arose in Africa due to many factors, including climate.

How Smart Are Pigs?

Treehugger, December 12, 2022

We explore studies on pig intelligence, social interaction, and individual emotion.

Animals Self-Medicate with Plants − Behavior People Have Observed and Emulated for Millennia

The Conversation, May 24, 2024

A remarkable body of accounts from ancient to medieval times describes self-medication by many different animals. The animals used plants to treat illness, repel parasites, neutralize poisons and heal wounds.


Singapore Airlines Turbulence: Why Climate Change Is Making Flights Rougher

Nature, May 22, 2024

Warming temperatures are likely to mean that more of your plane ride will have rocky conditions, creating potentially dangerous situations.

EPA Accused of ‘Egregious’ Misconduct in PFAS Testing of Pesticides

The Guardian, May 28, 2024

US agency found PFOS and other types of PFAS in pesticides but failed to disclose those results, watchdog group alleges.

Q&A: The Evolving Debate about Using Genetically Modified Crops in a Warming World

Carbon Brief, May 22, 2024

In this Q&A, Carbon Brief looks at the difference between GMOs and gene-edited foods and whether these technologies can help crops deal with climate change while boosting food security.

US Military Base Teem with PFAS. There’s Still No Firm Plan to Clean Them Up.

Grist, April 29, 2024

Excessive levels of PFAS have been detected at 80 percent of active and decommissioned military bases.

Alaskan Rivers Are Turning Orange. Climate Change Could Be to Blame.

Washington Post, May 24 2024

Climate change is likely causing dozens of rivers in Alaska to flow orange, and it could be disastrous for the state, researchers say.


We Already Have the Resources for an Equitable Energy Transition, We Just Need to Redirect Them

Impakter, May 13, 2024

Governments must stop funding polluters. Tax them instead, prioritize resources to countries least responsible for the climate crisis and most vulnerable to its impacts, and let frontline and marginalized communities lead the way

Hurricane Forecast Points to a Dangerous 2024 Atlantic Season, with La Niña and a Persistently Warm Ocean Teaming Up to Power Fierce Storms

The Conversation, May 23, 2024

If the National Hurricane Center’s early forecast, released May 23, is right, the North Atlantic could see 17 to 25 named storms, eight to 13 hurricanes, and four to seven major hurricanes by the end of November. That’s the highest number of named storms in any NOAA preseason forecast.

Majority of US Voters Support Climate Litigation against Big Oil, Poll Shows

The Guardian, May 28, 2024

And almost half of respondents back the filing of criminal charges against oil companies that have contributed to the climate crisis

‘Historic’ Advisory Opinion on Climate Change Says Countries Must Prevent Greenhouse Gases From Harming Oceans

Inside Climate News, May 21, 2024

The International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea’s opinion said that greenhouse gases are a form of marine pollution and laid out governments’ legal obligations to reduce that contamination and limit global warming.

Despite Advertising Carbon Capture, ExxonMobil Saw Marginal Role for It in Fighting Climate Change

DeSmog, May 21, 2024

Internal documents unearthed by a U.S. Senate panel show the oil giant modeled up to 500 CCS sites operating globally by 2050, far fewer than rival Shell.

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