Author Topic: Weekly Science Headlines  (Read 215816 times)

00.dusk

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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1140 on: July 18, 2017, 01:46:56 pm »
Article is trash. The research was done by astrophysicists and not biologists, who went into greater detail. Put bluntly, they might "survive", but only if they were already in their "tun", a dessicated state of biological suspended animation. Active tardigrades in extreme environments aren't much more durable than the average nematode. And in almost every case where everything but tardigrades die, they aren't going to last very long, if they ever even wake up. Also: different species aren't accounted for. It's kind of like saying "E. coli could be growing in the Chernobyl power plant!" because D. radiodurans is nigh impossible to kill with any sensible amount of ionizing radiation and you didn't bother separating the two.

Article here. Still sensationalist trash up front, but it becomes quickly apparent that this was a case of someone stepping outside of their specialty and making really stupid conclusions.

Brother Mythos

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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1141 on: July 18, 2017, 11:57:36 pm »
Article is trash. The research was done by astrophysicists and not biologists, who went into greater detail. Put bluntly, they might "survive", but only if they were already in their "tun", a dessicated state of biological suspended animation. Active tardigrades in extreme environments aren't much more durable than the average nematode. And in almost every case where everything but tardigrades die, they aren't going to last very long, if they ever even wake up. Also: different species aren't accounted for. It's kind of like saying "E. coli could be growing in the Chernobyl power plant!" because D. radiodurans is nigh impossible to kill with any sensible amount of ionizing radiation and you didn't bother separating the two.

Article here. Still sensationalist trash up front, but it becomes quickly apparent that this was a case of someone stepping outside of their specialty and making really stupid conclusions.

You are right about the authors. I checked their CVs, and none of them have any type of degree in what I call ‘The Life Sciences.’

Also, I had assumed that since the article appeared on the Nature website, it had undergone peer review. But, that does not seem to be the case, as their ArXiv.org version was first submitted on 13-Jul-17, and, apparently, revised only once on 17-Jul-17.

I’ll have to be more careful about this type of article in the future.

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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1142 on: July 19, 2017, 08:36:04 am »
Junk science has become so prevalent on most media platforms, social and otherwise, that it gets increasingly difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff unless you're an expert in a particular field, or willing to spend more time than is worthwhile.

Bad signal is probably one of our greatest challenges right now.  The very real threats we face require intelligent responses, but when you take bad signal as your data, well, GIGO.
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Brother Mythos

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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1143 on: July 20, 2017, 04:22:16 pm »
“Link to the Past: Evidence of Humanity's Oldest Ropes Unearthed”

Yeah, I know, rope is mundane stuff in our world. But, our ancestors needed rope to move those big rocks to build Stonehenge. And, sailing boats have been dependant upon rope from the time the first one was launched. So, being able to make rope, at least, as far back as 42,000 years ago was a really big deal.

From the article, “At first glance, the discovery in Germany's Hohle Fels cave looked like it could be the mock-up for a 42,000-year-old set of brass knuckles: four carefully carved small holes placed close together on an 8-inch-long (20 centimeters) strip of mammoth ivory.”

And, “Initially, the scientists interpreted the find as artwork, but archaeologists had never found anything that remotely resembled the ivory piece, the researchers said. Instead, the rifling, etched in the bone with incredible care, suggested a practical use: fiber forced through the holes could produce four strands of rope with a right-hand twist that could in turn be fashioned into a larger rope, the study said. Using a bronze casting of the artifact (it is illegal to take such objects out of Germany), Rots and her Liege staff made 10 feet (3 m) of rope in 15 minutes.”

Here’s the link, for anyone who might be interested: https://www.livescience.com/59756-oldest-ropes-tools-unearthed.html

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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1144 on: August 12, 2017, 06:01:27 am »
'Nastiest' Jurassic crocodile named after Motorhead's Lemmy

“The Lemmysuchus obtusidens was a giant 19-foot long crocodile that was considered one of the ‘biggest coastal predators of its time,’ using its broad snout and large blunt teeth to crush shelled prey in a way that Lorna Steel, curator of London's Natural History Museum, believed would have delighted Lemmy.”

Here’s the link: https://www.upi.com/Odd_News/2017/08/11/Nastiest-Jurassic-crocodile-named-after-Motorheads-Lemmy/7221502458844/?utm_source=sec&utm_campaign=sl&utm_medium=16

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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1145 on: August 12, 2017, 02:42:32 pm »
This has been bummed up to be anything from accelerated wound healing to repairing stroke damage. Goes into human trials next year.
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Re: Weekly Science Headlines
« Reply #1146 on: August 13, 2017, 06:08:37 pm »
Junk science has become so prevalent on most media platforms, social and otherwise, that it gets increasingly difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff unless you're an expert in a particular field, or willing to spend more time than is worthwhile.

Bad signal is probably one of our greatest challenges right now.  The very real threats we face require intelligent responses, but when you take bad signal as your data, well, GIGO.

On the other hand it's only for the past millenium or so that there's been any appreciable amount of good signal at all (and only since the renaissance that there's been any in europe and the places they've spread to). Prior to that there were only superstitous barbarians.
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