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2018年3月15日 星期四

Daily Bulletin for 03/15/2018 

03/15/2018
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The Great Lie of Particle Physics

Sabine Hossenfelder, Backreaction

You haven't seen headlines recently about the Large Hadron Collider, have you? That's because even the most skilled science writers can't find much to write about.There are loads of data for sure, and nuclear physicists are giddy with joy because the LHC has delivered a wealth of new information about the structure of protons and heavy ions.

Why It's So Hard to Build a Better Flu Vaccine

Bethany Halford, C & E News

By all accounts, the 201718 influenza season has been a bad one. It feels like everyone's family has been hit, sometimes twice. Schools have had to shut down to disinfect; hospitals are overcrowded.By February, the number of people in the U.S. going to see their doctor with flu-like symptoms reached levels not seen since 2009, when the country battled the swine flu pandemic.

Citizen Scientist Spots New Type of Aurora

Ramin Skibba, National Geographic

While the northern and southern lights have dazzled watchers of the night sky for millennia, vigilant citizen scientist photographers found another type of aurora over the past few years: a short-lived shimmering purple ribbon of plasma. Their intriguing discovery drew the attention of space scientists, who have just begun to study them.

Weird Vibrations Poised to Control Quantum Computers

Adrian Cho, Science

For the moment, microwave photons are the keys to many quantum computers: Physicists use them to program, read out, and otherwise manipulate the machines' quantum bits. But microwave technology is bulky, and its quantum states don't last very long. Now, several groups are exploring a new way to talk to a quantum computer: with tiny vibrations, normally carriers of pesky heat and noise.

DARPA Is Funding Time Crystal Research

Ryan Mandelbaum, Gizmodo

You probably scratched your head last year if you read about time crystals, likely 2017's most esoteric, widely covered popular science story. Even if you understood how they worked, you might not have known what use they could have. Time crystals, systems of atoms that maintain a periodic ticking behavior in the presence of an added electromagnetic pulse, have now piqued the interest of one well-funded government agency: the Department of Defense.

Hawking's Black Hole Puzzle Keeps Puzzling

Jennifer Ouellette, Quanta Magazine

The renowned British physicist Stephen Hawking, who died today at 76, was something of a betting man, regularly entering into friendly wagers with his colleagues over key questions in theoretical physics. I sensed when Stephen and I first met that he would enjoy being treated irreverently, wrote John Preskill, a physicist at the California Institute of Technology, earlier today on Twitter.

The Scientific Lessons Stephen Hawking Never Learned

Ethan Siegel, Forbes

In the 1960s, a young theoretical physicist named Stephen Hawking rose to prominence as a primary collaborator with Roger Penrose. By his mid-20s, he had proven a number of important theorems in General Relativity, and was a rising star when tragedy struck: he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Psychology's 'Growth Mindset' May Be Bogus

Abigail Beall, Wired UK

For decades, psychologists and educators have believed that a growth mindset can have a significant influence on the way a child performs academically. From the ethos of a primary school in Camden to a Nasa study in 'engineering behaviour', it has taken hold across the world, and across generations. But this dominant dogma, it turns out, may have been wildly overblown.

Why Stephen Hawking Never Won a Nobel Prize

Seth Borenstein, AP

Stephen Hawking won accolades from his peers for having one of the most brilliant minds in science, but he never got a Nobel Prize because no one has yet proven his ideas.The Nobel committee looks for proof, not big ideas. Hawking was a deep thinker a theorist and his musings about black holes and cosmology have yet to get the lockdown evidence that accompanies the physics prizes, his fellow scientists said.

Dwarf Planet Ceres May Store Briny Water

Lisa Grossman, ScienceNews

Ceres may be regularly coughing up briny water or slush onto its surface.The discovery of waterlogged minerals and a growing ice wall suggests that the dwarf planet could harbor underground liquid water or slushy brine, which has escaped through cracks and craters in the recent past and may still be seeping out today.

Why Astrology Is Turning to Millennials

Dean Burnett, The Guardian

I once wrote a spoof horoscope column for a short-lived comedy publication under the pseudonym Mystic Bob. Spoofing horoscopes is a comedy staple, and my own take on it was that given how most horoscopes are largely just a jumble of vague generalisations and unspecific predictions, I figured it would be funny to do ones that were almost terrifyingly precise.

Why Robots Will Have Rights

Thomas Hills, Psychology Today

When people talk about whether robots will have rights, they usually get tied up with some key criterion argument. Will they have consciousness? Will they have empathy? Will they, in the words of Daniel Dennett, have a lively center of narrative gravity (link is external) (i.e., an enduring sense of self)? If they don't have those things, which some say they never will, then they don't get rights. So say the criterionists.

Stephen Hawking Dies at Age 76

Ian Sample, The Guardian

Stephen Hawking, the brightest star in the firmament of science, whose insights shaped modern cosmology and inspired global audiences in the millions, has died aged 76.His family released a statement in the early hours of Wednesday morning confirming his death at his home in Cambridge.

Obituary: Stephen Hawking

BBC News

Stephen Hawking - who died aged 76 - battled motor neurone disease to become one of the most respected and best-known scientists of his age.A man of great humour, he became a popular ambassador for science and was always careful to ensure that the general public had ready access to his work.

GMO Crops Have Beneficial 'Halo Effect'

Mark Lynas, Alliance for Science

Growing genetically modified insect-resistant corn in the United States has dramatically reduced insecticide use and created a halo effect that also benefits farmers raising non-GM and organic crops, new research shows.This finding, published by University of Maryland researchers in the prestigious peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, effectively shreds the conventional anti-GMO narrative that GM crops result in more pesticide use and present a threat to organic growers.

What Doomed the Pterosaurs?

Brian Switek, Smithsonian

Sixty six million years ago, life on Earth had a very bad day.That's when an immense asteroid slammed into what is now the Yucatan Peninsula, triggering one of the worst extinction crises of all time. This, of course, was the disaster that wiped out the dinosaurs. But it wasn't just the terrible lizards who were lost.
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