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Showing posts from April 22, 2016

Healthy Eating Trick: Use Tech to Order Food

In a third experiment, researchers asked students to choose between a Twix and a banana for a snack. When students made their choice out loud, 62 percent chose the Twix. In comparison, when the students chose by pushing a button, 35 percent chose the Twix, and when they wrote down their choice, 43 percent chose the Twix.

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Zap! Sparking the Brain Stimulates Creativity

That spark of creativity you crave might begin with a tiny zap. Results showed an in increase in creative thinking after the zaps, demonstrating for the first time that electrical stimulation can enhance creativity, the researchers said. But before you try the DIY route by licking your finger and sticking it in a socket, the researchers warned that they are in the early stages of understanding how electrical stimulation may enhance thought.

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This Look Makes Candidates More Electable

Researchers found that Americans preferred to vote for candidates who appeared more competent, according to the study, published today (April 21) in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science. Chinese participants, on the other hand, valued candidates who appeared to have better social skills, the researchers found. It turned out that the appearance of competence, or the ability to complete certain goals, was more important to American participants, while the appearance of "social competence," or the ability to navigate social situations and be sensitive to the needs of others, played a greater role in the decision for Chinese participants.

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Volatile Sakurajima Volcano is a Lightning Laboratory

Jeffrey Johnson, associate professor of geosciences at Boise State University, contributed this article to Live Science's Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights. Japan is a country of volcanoes, and Sakurajima is one of its most infamous. Its notoriety stems from its poor behavior in 1914, when powerful explosions and pyroclastic flows forced the evacuation of the small volcanic island.


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For Social Work to Work People Need to Know They Belong (Op-Ed)

Belonging is a psychological lever that has broad consequences for people's interests, motivation, health and happiness, suggests Gregory Walton, a psychologist at Stanford University in California who has published a series of studies on the subject. In social work, it's just as important to help vulnerable clients build meaningful relationships and increase their sense of community as it is to deliver direct services, like food and shelter. When social service agencies fill basic needs for the impoverished, unemployed or lonely, progress is usually measured in meals served, people sheltered or jobs placed.

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108-Year-Old Message in a Bottle Is Oldest Ever Found

The oldest message in a bottle spent 108 years, 4 months and 18 days at sea. This year, Guinness World Records recognized it as the oldest message in a bottle ever found. One of more than 1,000 bottles thrown into the North Sea by marine biologist George Parker Bidder, the bottle was part of a research project on the patterns of ocean currents.


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Sci-Tech Visionaries Gather for 'Future Is Here' Festival

This weekend, hundreds of scientists, tech visionaries and industry leaders will flock to the nation's capital for Smithsonian magazine's "Future Is Here" festival, a three-day event that explores research and innovations at the intersection of science and science fiction. "It's an explosion of creativity — it's really a unique program," said Michael Caruso, editor in chief of Smithsonian magazine, which is hosting the event. "The theme of the whole thing is science meets science fiction.

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Dutch fountain runs on sunshine and air

A Dutch sculpture presented on Earth Day spouts water 6 meters high without using conventional water or power sources in what creators hope will inspire new ways to ease resource shortages in drought-prone climates. The Solar Fountain, which took Dutch inventor Ap Verheggen six years to develop, produces around 2 liters (4.2 pints) of water per day using an ordinary dehumidifier, two 250-watt solar panels and a rechargeable battery pack. "We present the sculpture with technology that's off the shelves," Verheggen said.

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Dinosaur Decline Started Long Before Asteroid Impact

The dinosaurs — the so-called tyrants of the Mesozoic era — weren't exactly thriving during their last few million years on Earth, a new study finds. The new analysis of the dinosaur family tree reveals that dinosaurs were disappearing even before the asteroid hit about 65.5 million years ago. Roughly 24 million years before that impact, dinosaur extinction rates passed speciation rates, meaning that the animals were losing the ability to replace extinct species with new ones, the researchers said.


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Faster Than Light! Incredible Illusion Makes Images 'Time Travel'

Taken together, the results finally prove a century-old prediction made by British scientist and polymath Lord Rayleigh. Lord Rayleigh — the brilliant British physicist who discovered the noble gas argon and explained why the sky is blue — also made a bizarre prediction about sound waves nearly a century ago. Rayleigh reasoned that, because the speed of sound is fixed, an object traveling faster than that while spewing out sound would result in sound waves that would seem to travel in the opposite direction of the object and thus seem to be reversed in time orientation.

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Building for Egypt's First Female Pharaoh Discovered

Ancient stone blocks depicting Queen Hatshepsut have been discovered on Egypt's Elephantine Island, providing insights into the early years of her reign, Egypt's Ministry of Antiquities announced this week. On several of the blocks, Queen Hatshepsut was represented as a woman, according to the Ministry, suggesting that the blocks and building it came from were erected during the early part of the first female pharaoh's reign, which lasted from 1473 B.C. to 1458 B.C. Later in her reign, the queen was depicted as a male. Mentions of Queen Hatshepsut were erased and monuments bearing her image were defaced after her death, and her female figure was replaced with images of a male king: her deceased husband Thutmose II. It is believed that her co-ruler and stepson/nephew Thutmose III ordered the change.


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AstraZeneca taps gene pioneer Venter for huge drug-hunting sweep

By Ben Hirschler CAMBRIDGE, England (Reuters) - AstraZeneca , working with genome pioneer Craig Venter, is launching a massive gene hunt in the most comprehensive bet yet by a pharmaceutical firm on the potential of genetic variations to unlock routes to new medicines. The initiative, announced on Friday, involves sequencing up to 2 million human genomes - the complete set of genetic code that acts as the software of life - including 500,000 DNA samples collected by AstraZeneca in global clinical trials. Financial details of the 10-year project were not disclosed but Mene Pangalos, head of early drug development, said the company would be investing "hundreds of millions of dollars".


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