2018年11月30日 星期五

Daily Bulletin for 11/30/2018 

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Chaos Makes the Multiverse Unnecessary

Noson Yanofsky, Nautilus

Scientists look around the universe and see amazing structure. There are objects and processes of fantastic complexity. Every action in our universe follows exact laws of nature that are perfectly expressed in a mathematical language. These laws of nature appear fine-tuned to bring about life, and in particular, intelligent life. What exactly are these laws of nature and how do we find them?

Albert Einstein: A Prophet for a Religion of Science?

Ross Pomeroy, RCScience

Albert Einstein once modestly remarked that he had just a "couple of ideas" in his scientific career. Though few in number, these ideas garnered Einstein enduring notoriety. Recently, however, Einstein's religious views have been earning media attention.

Is Sex for Reproduction About to Become Extinct?

Jamie Metzl, Leaps Magazine

There are lots of great reasons we humans have sex. We mostly do it to pair bond, realize our primal urges, and feel good. Once in a while, we also do it to make babies. As the coming genetic revolution plays out, we'll still have sex for most of the same reasons we do today. But we'll increasingly not do it to procreate.

Untangling the Origin of String Theory

CERN Courier

In the summer of 1968, while a visitor in CERN's theory division, Gabriele Veneziano wrote a paper titled Construction of a crossing-symmetric, Regge behaved amplitude for linearly-rising trajectories. He was trying to explain the strong interaction, but his paper wound up marking the beginning of string theory.

Etruscan Death Rituals: Orgasm, Blood, and Dance

Nancy Bazilchuk, ScienceNordic

The Etruscans lived in what is today Tuscany, Italy, and the island of Corsica from about 700 years BCE.The region was eventually conquered by the Romans and their culture was gradually assimilated into Roman culture. But the Etruscans have had an influence on us long after their time, via Roman culture and architecture.

Mathematical Simplicity May Drive Evolution's Speed

Jordana Cepelewicz, Quanta

Creationists love to insist that evolution had to assemble upward of 300 amino acids in the right order to create just one medium-size human protein. With 20 possible amino acids to occupy each of those positions, there would seemingly have been more than 20300 possibilities to sift through, a quantity that renders the number of atoms in the observable universe inconsequential.

Is the World Heading for an Insulin Shortage?

Soutik Biswas, BBC News

It has been called the scourge of urban life. Poor lifestyle and obesity have led to a surge in type 2 diabetes, a condition that occurs when the body cannot produce enough insulin to regulate blood sugar levels.Now scientists say that millions of people around the world with diabetes may not be able to access insulin over the next decade and more.

The Decrease in U.S. Lifespan Is Now a Trend

Cathleen O'Grady, Ars Technica

In 1900, the average person in the US could expect to live just 47.3 years. Throughout the 20th century, that figure climbed rapidly, topping 70 years for the first time in 1961 and reaching 78.9 years in 2014, suggesting 80 was only a matter of time.

2.4-Million-Year-Old Stone Tools Found in Unexpected Place

Ed Yong, Atlantic

To the untrained eye, the rock would have looked like any other. But when Mohamed Sahnouni pulled it out of the ground in the summer of 2006, he immediately recognized it as a chopper: a palm-size tool deliberately flaked to create a sharp cutting edge.

Spider Found to Nurse Its Young With Milk

Tanya Loos, Cosmos Magazine

A new study reveals a species of jumping spider in which newly hatched young are entirely dependent on a maternally excreted milk-like substance. Suckling continues for 40 days well beyond the point at which the young can forage for themselves.The feeding method, write researchers led by Zhanqi Chen from the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Yunnan, compares functionally and behaviourally to lactation in mammals.

Stone Age Humans Feasted on Caviar

Meilan Solly, Smithsonian

Protein analysis of ancient food particles found clinging to ceramic pots at the Friesack 4 archaeological site in Brandenburg, Germany, suggests humans have feasted on caviar for at least 6,000 years.The findings, newly published in PLoS One, act as a Stone Age cookbook of sorts, outlining ancient humans' food-preparing process in unprecedented detail.

The Polarization of Society: Even Scientists Become Tribal

Alex Berezow, ACSH

It is increasingly difficult to have a conversation about any topic that is even remotely political. We appear to have entered a world in which there is no longer a common set of agreed upon facts.All one needs to do to verify this is to flip between cable news channels. Doing so reveals a strange universe of "red facts" and an equally strange, parallel universe of "blue facts."
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