Science

11:02am

Mon July 27, 2015
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

15 Questions About Science And Religion, Answered

iStockphoto

Last April, I joined more than a dozen cognitive scientists at a workshop called "Breaking New Ground in the Science-Religion Dialogue." The workshop, organized by Cristine Legare at the University of Texas at Austin, aimed to encourage a sophisticated, evidence-based look at the psychology behind science and religion, as well as psychological factors that affect people's perception of believers, atheists and the relationship between science and religion.

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3:57am

Mon July 27, 2015
Shots - Health News

A Scientist Deploys Light And Sound To Reveal The Brain

Originally published on Wed July 29, 2015 3:51 pm

A nanosecond pulsed laser beam starts the photoacoustic imaging process.
Geoff Story/Courtesy of Washington University in St. Louis

Lihong Wang creates the sort of medical technology you'd expect to find on the starship Enterprise.

Wang, a professor of biomedical engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, has already helped develop instruments that can detect individual cancer cells in the bloodstream and oxygen consumption deep within the body. He has also created a camera that shoots at 100 billion frames a second, fast enough to freeze an object traveling at the speed of light.

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11:27am

Sun July 26, 2015
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

This Is Your Brain On The Outdoors

Alexander Burzik iStockphoto

The New York Times recently carried a fascinating report on how a walk in nature can actually change the wiring in your brain. According to the story, not only did a brief walk in the woods make people report they felt happier but, using brain scans, researchers found time nature changed neurological functioning as well.

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5:38pm

Sat July 25, 2015
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

The Art Of Knowing What You're Looking For

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 2:33 pm

iStockphoto

I have an unusual name. As I've mentioned before in this place, it is difficult or even impossible for me to tell someone my name over the phone. If they don't know it, they can't hear it. It's just too unexpected.

In my experience, this is a quite general phenomenon. We see and hear what we expect to see and hear, at least a fair bit of the time. I don't have to actually hear your response to my "How are you?" to be pretty sure what you said in reply.

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5:28pm

Sat July 25, 2015
Shots - Health News

When Alzheimer's Steals Your Appetite, Remember To Laugh

Originally published on Sat July 25, 2015 5:59 pm

Despite losing his sense of taste and smell to Alzheimer's disease, Greg O'Brien says grilling supper on the back deck with his son on a summer evening is still fun.
Sam Broun Courtesy of Greg O'Brien

In this installment of NPR's series Inside Alzheimer's, we hear from Greg O'Brien about losing his sense of taste and smell, and how he's learning there's much more to a good meal than food. O'Brien, a longtime journalist in Cape Cod, Mass., was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease in 2009.

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5:28pm

Sat July 25, 2015
Around the Nation

As Lightning Strikes Spike, Myth-Busting Often Means Safety

Originally published on Sat July 25, 2015 9:42 pm

Deaths from lightning strikes are up sharply this year, according to the National Weather Service. Here are some myths about lightning, or avoiding it, and tips on how to actually stay safe.

This story initially aired on July 17, 2015 on Morning Edition.

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5:14pm

Sat July 25, 2015
News

Amid Lingering Skepticism, A Primer On What Bland's Autopsy Can Tell Us

Originally published on Sat July 25, 2015 7:42 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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9:08pm

Fri July 24, 2015
Shots - Health News

California Judge Throws Out Lawsuit On Medically Assisted Suicide

Originally published on Mon July 27, 2015 5:35 pm

Christy O'Donnell, who has advanced lung cancer, is one of several California patients suing for the right to get a doctor's help with prescription medicine to end their own lives if and when they feel that's necessary.
YouTube

Three terminally ill patients lost a court battle in California Friday over whether they should have the right to request and take lethal medication to hasten their deaths.

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5:09pm

Fri July 24, 2015
U.S.

Retracing Ralph Waldo Emerson's Steps In A Now 'Unchanged Eden'

Originally published on Fri July 24, 2015 8:22 pm

Ralph Waldo Emerson.
George Eastman House Collection via Wikimedia Commons

It's high summer, and for a lot of us that means it's time to go camping. This summer, we're celebrating one particular camping trip.

Way back in 1858, Ralph Waldo Emerson, the great philosopher and poet, set out into the Adirondack Mountains in New York. On the famous journey, he took with him some of the most famous artists, scientists and thinkers of his day.

This year, I set out early in the morning in my canoe with a company of my own: environmental activist and writer Bill McKibben and our guide, Mike Carr with the Nature Conservancy.

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4:34pm

Fri July 24, 2015
The Salt

Salt Is Slowly Crippling California's Almond Industry

Originally published on Mon July 27, 2015 4:48 pm

Almond orchards across California are dealing with trees showing signs of stress from the drought, such as smaller nuts and salt-burned leaves.
Ezra Romero for NPR

As California's drought drags on, its almond industry has come under scrutiny. As you've probably heard by now, almonds use a lot of water — about one gallon per nut. Most growers are relying on groundwater even more this year, because their surface water has been cut off. But that brings a different problem all together: too much salt.

Not the salt added to make roasted almonds savory, but salt in groundwater – which is killing trees.

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