Science

3:18pm

Wed September 12, 2012
The Salt

Have Lobster, Will Travel — And Race The Clock

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 2:47 pm

An overabundance of lobsters in Maine due to early shedding of shells has driven down prices to record lows. That's good for consumers.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

This summer in Maine, I ate more lobster than at any other time I've been there – twice in one day on a couple of occasions. We lobster lovers had the glut of soft-shells, which started in June as the lobsters began to shed earlier and faster than usual, to thank for the more affordable market price of around $4 or less a pound.

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3:39am

Wed September 12, 2012
The Salt

Five Ways To Spot A Fake Online Review, Restaurant Or Otherwise

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 2:47 pm

One sign that a restaurant review is a fake is if it gives a very high or very low rating without many specifics.
Bill Oxford iStockphoto.com

Thinking of going to a nice restaurant? Before you decide, you probably go online and read reviews of the place from other customers (or you listen to these actors read them to you). Online reviews of restaurants, travel deals, apps and just about anything you want to buy have become a powerful driver of consumer behavior. Unsurprisingly, they have also created a powerful incentive to cheat.

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5:52pm

Tue September 11, 2012
Science

'Astonishing' Arctic Ice Melt Sets New Record

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 9:57 pm

Norman Kuring NASA/GSFC/Suomi

Arctic sea ice has melted dramatically this summer, smashing the previous record. The Arctic has warmed dramatically compared with the rest of the planet, and scientists say that's what's driving this loss of ice.

To be sure, ice on the Arctic Ocean always melts in the summer. Historically, about half of it is gone by mid-September. But this year, three-fourths of the ice has melted away, setting a dramatic new benchmark.

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4:52pm

Tue September 11, 2012
Environment

Officials Combat Big Stink In Southern California

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 9:57 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Here are some descriptions of a foul smell that has stunk its way across a huge stretch of Southern California.

PAT STEVENS: Rotting fish, sewage, you know.

JOYCE THATCHER: It smells exactly like somebody's septic system overflowed.

SEAN NEALON: Like an old banana under the seat for, like, a week, and it just turns all black and gooey and, like, something's rotting.

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3:48pm

Tue September 11, 2012
The Salt

How Oregon's Prized Pinot Noir Grapes Will Take The Heat Of Climate Change

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 4:08 pm

Pinot noir grapes are notoriously finicky about the weather, and climate change has winemakers in Oregon thinking about the future.
Greg Wahl-Stephens AP

Some grapes like it hot.

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2:49pm

Tue September 11, 2012
Animals

New Center Trains Detection Dogs To Save Lives

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 3:27 pm

Eleven-week-old 11-week-old Bretagne is beginning her training as a detection dog at the Penn Vet Working Dog Center, which opens Tuesday. Click here to see photos of Bretagne at the mic during her Fresh Air interview.
Sarah Griffith

A detection dog-training center opens Tuesday, on the anniversary of Sept. 11, at the University of Pennsylvania so scientists can train dogs for search-and-rescue missions — and study what helps them succeed.

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2:01pm

Tue September 11, 2012
Krulwich Wonders...

The Miracle Of The Levitating Slinky

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 8:43 am

Veritasium/YouTube

1:48pm

Tue September 11, 2012
Environment

Arctic Sea Ice Melt Sets Record

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 2:46 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

Every summer, some of the ice that covers the Arctic Ocean melts. Come mid-September, it begins to refreeze. Scientists began to monitor this cycle in the late 1970s, and this year, they saw less ice than ever before - a lot less ice. NPR science correspondent Richard Harris joins us here in Studio 3A. Richard, nice to have you on the program.

RICHARD HARRIS, BYLINE: Always a pleasure, Neal.

CONAN: And how big is this change?

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1:20pm

Tue September 11, 2012
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

Science, Solace And Hope

Newborn stars, hidden behind thick dust, are revealed in this image of a section of the Christmas Tree Cluster from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
 Star-forming clouds like this one are dynamic and evolving structures. Since the stars trace the straight line pattern of spokes of a wheel, scientists believe that these are newborn stars — or "protostars" — about 100,000 years old.
Spitzer Space Telescope NASA/JPL-Caltech/P.S. Teixeira

I would like to give you this. It's not much. But in its way it may offer some solace on this date always synonymous with suffering.

It's an image. It is a picture of someplace else, someplace utterly different, someplace that knows nothing of the hatred, bigotry and violence humans unleash on each other for the most seemly absurd reasons.

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3:31am

Tue September 11, 2012
Science

A Berry So Shiny, It's Irresistible (And Inedible)

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 9:57 am

The shiny blue berries of the tropical Pollia condensata plant rely on their looks, not nutritional content, to attract birds to spread their seeds.
Silvia Vignolini et al. via PNAS

That fake fruit in the wooden bowls that hotels love to decorate their lobbies with never looks quite right. No, apparently it takes nature to make a fake that looks even better than the real thing.

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