Science

3:01am

Tue August 27, 2013
Europe

Beachgoers In Spain Face Invasion Of Jellyfish

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 2:01 pm

Marine biologist Stefano Piraino thinks overfishing is one of the reasons jellyfish populations are growing. He said if you take fish out of the oceans, it leaves more food for jellyfish. The jellyfish here are known as Pelagia noctiluca, the mauve stinger.
Courtesy of Stefano Piraino MED-JELLYRISK

Blue turquoise waves lap at white sand on the Spanish island of Formentera in the Mediterranean Sea. Sweaty tourists from all over Europe cram the beach. But on this particular afternoon, no one dares take a cool dip in the water.

The reason? It's what Spaniards call "medusas" — named after the monster from Greek mythology, with a woman's face and venomous snakes for hair. In English, they're called jellyfish.

Gabrielle Amand's son was a recent victim of one. He's wrapped in a towel, sitting under an umbrella on the shore.

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10:58am

Mon August 26, 2013
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

In Defense of (Conceptually Messy) Psychology

Originally published on Mon August 26, 2013 1:43 pm

iStockphoto.com

In a recent post at The Daily Beast, Will Wilkinson lambasts the field of psychology.

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2:00pm

Sun August 25, 2013
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

Seeing Music For What It Is

Originally published on Sun August 25, 2013 3:32 pm

iStockphoto.com

Music is not sound art, even though musical ideas find natural expression in melody and harmony, timbre and rhythm. Music may be carried in sound, but only in the way that our applause at a concert is carried in sound. Applause is clapping; it is stomping and shouting. These are noisy, but they are not noise. They are not sound as a physicist might think of sound. Music is to sound as gesture is to mere movement. Physics is only part of the story.

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8:04am

Sun August 25, 2013
Space

Far Out: Voyager 1 Might Be Over The Edge, Into Deep Space

Originally published on Sun August 25, 2013 11:29 am

For the past decade, scientists have been waiting for the Voyager 1 spacecraft to cross into deep space. New research suggests it has left the solar system, but other scientists say it's still inside the sun's sphere of influence. (This piece initially aired Aug. 19, 2013, on Morning Edition.)

12:44pm

Sat August 24, 2013
The Two-Way

Tons Of Molten Glass Go Into Making Mirror For Giant Telescope

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 4:08 pm

An artist's concept of the completed Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT)
Giant Magellan Telescope

Technicians on Saturday are set to cast 20 tons of glass for the third of seven ultra-precise primary mirrors that will make up the 72-foot Giant Magellan Telescope, scheduled for completion in northern Chile's arid Atacama Desert in 2020.

The parabolic mirror will be cast at the University of Arizona's Steward Observatory Mirror Lab. The molten borosilicate, made by the Ohara Corporation, will be spun cast at 2140 degrees Fahrenheit.

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7:35am

Sat August 24, 2013
Environment

Can The World Engineer A Cooler Climate?

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 11:39 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Draft report from the intergovernmental panel on climate change was leaked to the media this week. The scientists will report to the U.N. that it is nearly certain that human activity has caused most of the earth's climate change over the last 50 years. Now, this leak is certain to rekindle debates about how best to contend with events like increasing temperatures and rising sea levels, and it might make some people take a new look at what's called geoengineering.

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7:35am

Sat August 24, 2013
Environment

On A Rocky Maine Island, Puffins Making A Tenuous Comeback

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 11:39 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. East Coast seabirds have had a tough year. They've been battered by storms and disruptions in the food chain. Among them, the sturdy little Atlantic puffin. Now, here in the United States, their numbers dwindle to just a single nesting pair by 1901. Since then, thanks to the Audubon Society's Project Puffin, they've made a comeback. But as WBUR's Fred Bever reports, the puffins are now facing some new threats.

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5:49pm

Fri August 23, 2013
Environment

The 'Consensus' View: Kevin Trenberth's Take On Climate Change

Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 9:12 pm

Next month, a scientific committee sponsored by the United Nations will put out its latest assessment of climate change. The report is expected to underscore yet again that climate change is a serious problem and human beings are largely responsible.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) represents a consensus view of hundreds of scientists from around the world. The effort shared the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore.

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2:35pm

Fri August 23, 2013
Shots - Health News

To Reduce Prejudice, Try Sharing Passions And Cultures

Originally published on Mon August 26, 2013 10:17 am

Sharing passions can help erase ethnic prejudice. No word if that includes a passion for NCAA basketball.
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP

People can become less prejudiced, but it's not entirely clear how we make the journey from hatred to acceptance.

Something as simple as a shared passion for The Catcher in the Rye can help, researchers say. So does getting an inside look at the other person's culture, even if only for a few minutes.

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1:41pm

Fri August 23, 2013
Science

Rebooting Science Museums for the 21st Century

Originally published on Mon August 26, 2013 9:16 am

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

When you last visited your local science museum, what did you see? Those cavernous dark halls, the dinosaurs, a bone frozen into place. The dioramas of stuffed big-horn sheep in a painted habitat. We all know of those. At least that might be how you remember it. But museum directors today are reimagining that Victorian-era museum, reimagining it for the 21st century. They envision using everything from smartphone apps to walk-through labs and meet and greet with actual scientists.

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