Science

12:48pm

Wed February 19, 2014
Shots - Health News

Sit More, And You're More Likely To Be Disabled After Age 60

Originally published on Thu February 20, 2014 2:26 pm

Sure, it's relaxing. But all those hours on the sofa may make it hard to actually stand up on your own.
iStockphoto

The more you sit, the less physically active you are, which can lead to all sorts of health problems, including an early death.

But too much sitting increasingly looks like a health risk all its own. Researchers at Northwestern University say that for people 60 and older, each additional hour a day spent sitting increases the risk of becoming physically disabled by about 50 percent — no matter how much exercise they get.

Read more

11:19am

Wed February 19, 2014
Krulwich Wonders...

Trees On The Move As Temperature Zones Shift 3.8 Feet A Day

Originally published on Wed February 19, 2014 2:46 pm

Robert Krulwich NPR

You are a snail. You are a plant. You like where you are. The temperature's right. It suits you.

But then, gradually, over the years, it gets warmer. Not every day, of course, but on more and more days, the temperature climbs to uncomfortable highs, drying you out, making you tired, thirsty.

Read more

8:45am

Wed February 19, 2014
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

The Mystery That Binds Us All

Originally published on Wed February 19, 2014 5:02 pm

A total solar eclipse, seen from northern Queensland, Australia, on November 14, 2012.
Greg Wood AFP/Getty Images

In last week's New Yorker, essayist and critic Adam Gopnik reviewed Peter Watson's The Age of Atheists: How We Have Sought to Live Since the Death of God, a book that — starting with Nietzsche's pronouncement that God is dead — visits most of the famous atheists of the 20th century.

Read more

9:44am

Tue February 18, 2014
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

How To See A Galaxy In Your Toilet Bowl

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 8:01 pm

The spiral galaxy known as NGC 3521 lies in the constellation of Leo, a mere 35 million light-years away. Now go flush and see if you understand the connection between the two.
O. Maliy ESO

Have you ever watched a little kid playing in a sink full of water? It could be the kitchen sink, the bathroom sink or even the tub — it's all the same to kids. The faucet goes on. The faucet goes off. The water fills up, the water drains away. Why is it that every kid everywhere can lose a good hour just watching water slosh around?

The answer is simple.

Read more

9:51am

Mon February 17, 2014
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

Galileo Lives On

Most historians agree that Galileo's famous experiment atop the Leaning Tower of Pisa never took place. So how did he arrive at and support his alternative to Aristotelian dogma?
Hulton Archive Getty Images

This past weekend marked the 450th anniversary of Galileo's birth. In articles celebrating his contributions to science, Clara Moskowitz at Scientific American wonders what he'd make of contemporary science, while Dan Vergano at National Geographic credits him with nothing short of the invention of "our own modern world."

Read more

8:03am

Mon February 17, 2014
Krulwich Wonders...

Expanding The NPR Brand, Mom By Mom

Connie J. Sun

The other day, I wrote a post about a cartoonist, Connie Sun, and her thoughts about animals. Her mom heard about it, and called Connie to say "Yea!" and then, because she's an honest woman, she asked, "What is NPR?" Here's what happened next:

I have this conversation all the time. So many people are not aware that NPR writes things, "posts" things. But we are spreading the word. (Going from "What is NPR?" to "NPR is blogs?" — that's progress, I think. No?)

Read more

3:37am

Mon February 17, 2014
Shots - Health News

Candy Flavors Put E-Cigarettes On Kids' Menu

Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 3:59 pm

Kids as young as 13 purchase e-cigarettes, or "vape pens," online, where independent sellers don't necessarily ask a buyer's age.
Jenny Lei Bolario Youth Radio

Electronic cigarettes are often billed as a safe way for smokers to try to kick their habit. But it's not just smokers who are getting their fix this way. According to a survey published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 5 middle school students who've tried one say they've never smoked a "real" cigarette. And between 2011 and 2012, e-cigarettes doubled in popularity among middle and high school students.

Read more

1:17pm

Sun February 16, 2014
Shots - Health News

Research Shows New Flu Viruses Often Arise In Domestic Animals

New research finds a close connection between the flu that devastated the horse population in North America in the 1870s and the avian flu of that period.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

As flu-watchers like to say, you can always count on influenza virus to surprise.

The latest revelation is that scientists have apparently been wrong about where new flu viruses come from. The dogma is that they always incubate in wild migratory birds, then get into domestic poultry, and then jump into mammals — especially pigs and humans.

Read more

11:41am

Sun February 16, 2014
The Two-Way

Kerry Warns Indonesia: Climate Change Threatens 'Entire Way Of Life'

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 12:11 pm

Secretary of State John Kerry gestures while speaking about climate change in Jakarta on Sunday.
POOL Reuters/Landov

Secretary of State John Kerry is continuing a push to move climate change to the top of the global agenda, telling an audience in the archipelago nation of Indonesia that rising global temperatures and sea levels could threaten their "entire way of life."

Read more

10:12am

Sun February 16, 2014
The Two-Way

Warming Arctic May Be Causing Jet Stream To Lose Its Way

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 12:17 pm

The jet stream that circles Earth's north pole travels west to east. But when the jet stream interacts with a Rossby wave, as shown here, the winds can wander far north and south, bringing frigid air to normally mild southern states.
NASA/GSFC

Mark Twain once said: "If you don't like the weather in New England now, just wait a few minutes."

Read more

Pages