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whip_lash : science   50

Master plan of the universe revealed in new galaxy maps
In these vivid 3D maps, which Tully call “Cosmicflows,” the universe takes on a startlingly new appearance. You won’t find our solar system or any familiar stars. You won’t even find our home galaxy, the Milky Way. The scale is so vast that entire galaxies shrink to dots, blend together and vanish into the bigger picture, like pixels on a computer screen.

What pops out at the end is nothing less than the master plan of the universe, seen across nearly a billion light-years. It contains a physical record of everything that has happened in our part of the universe since the time of the Big Bang.
astronomy  science 
august 2019 by whip_lash
Bizarre Particles Keep Flying Out of Antarctica's Ice, and They Might Shatter Modern Physics - Scientific American
And, combining the IceCube and ANITA data sets, the Penn State researchers calculated that, whatever particle is bursting up from the Earth, it has much less than a 1-in-3.5 million chance of being part of the Standard Model.
science  physics 
october 2018 by whip_lash
Kaggle: Your Home for Data Science
Kaggle is the place to do data science projects
data  datascience  programming  science 
august 2018 by whip_lash
The Intellectual War on Science - The Chronicle of Higher Education
The most frequently assigned book on science in universities (aside from a popular biology textbook) is Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. That 1962 classic is commonly interpreted as showing that science does not converge on the truth but merely busies itself with solving puzzles before lurching to some new paradigm that renders its previous theories obsolete; indeed, unintelligible. Though Kuhn himself disavowed that nihilist interpretation, it has become the conventional wisdom among many intellectuals. A critic from a major magazine once explained to me that the art world no longer considers whether works of art are "beautiful" for the same reason that scientists no longer consider whether theories are "true."
science  culture 
february 2018 by whip_lash
Implicit bias trainings are used to fight racism, but IAT science is flawed — Quartz
The four meta-analyses undertaken so far suggest there’s little use for the IAT outside of academia. Forscher says that while the test may reflect a psychological process that’s interesting to researchers, he’s “not very confident at all” that it measures a thought process that causes real-life discrimination.
psychology  race  science  bullshit 
december 2017 by whip_lash
The Unforgiving Math That Stops Epidemics | Quanta Magazine
If you know how many secondary cases to expect from each infected person, you can figure out the level of herd immunity needed in the population to keep the microbe from spreading. This is calculated by taking the reciprocal of R0 and subtracting it from 1. For measles, with an R0 of 12 to 18, you need somewhere between 92 percent (1 – 1/12) and 95 percent (1 – 1/18) of the population to have effective immunity to keep the virus from spreading. For flu, it’s much lower — only around 50 percent. And yet we rarely attain even that level of immunity with vaccination.
health  math  science 
october 2017 by whip_lash
Beyond the Bell Curve, a New Universal Law | Quanta Magazine
The central limit theorem, which was finally made rigorous about a century ago, certifies that test scores and other “uncorrelated” variables — meaning any of them can change without affecting the rest — will form a bell curve. By contrast, the Tracy-Widom curve appears to arise from variables that are strongly correlated, such as interacting species, stock prices and matrix eigenvalues.
science  math  statistics 
october 2017 by whip_lash
NOPE 2017
The best negative results help us learn from our mistakes. They can illuminate hidden obstacles or demonstrate why we need a change of course. An ideal submission to NOPE has a novel idea which sounds plausible from first principles or design intuition, but yields little to no improvement (in performance, power, area, …) in practice. The paper drills down into the reasons for the lack of improvement and proposes a plausible explanation – different technology trends, unexpected implementation complexity.
research  science 
august 2017 by whip_lash
Law lab - The Boston Globe
In other words, test government policies using the same technique — randomized controlled trials — used to test new drugs. A growing chorus of legal

scholars, economists, and political scientists believes that such trials should be conducted to evaluate a wide range of laws: gun control, safety and environmental regulations, election reforms, securities rules, and many others. And some believe that we are ethically obligated to do this, because laws affect our lives so pervasively.
law  science 
december 2010 by whip_lash
GOD-LOVING LINGUISTS | More Intelligent Life
Would SIL International ever consider ceding Ethnologue, so that it could become a linguistic enterprise without a religious agenda? This has been discussed, says Lewis, but mostly outside the organisation. The problem is, Ethnologue was built and is maintained with the help of a large number of volunteers and with money provided by Christian organisations. “As I look at the academic world, I don’t see any other institution that could support something of this magnitude over this period of time,” he says. Languages evolve and die, but over long stretches of time, making the monitoring process a protracted one.
christianity  science  language 
november 2010 by whip_lash
"They all look alike": Understanding the "other race effect"
These results show that N170, the highly-specific facial recognition signal, cannot discriminate between "other race" faces. This inability had not been known previously, and this study is the first to identify a possible neurophysiological basis of the other race effect.

It has been suggested that the other race effect is simply a result of differing amounts of facial variation between races, or varying observational abilities of particular races. However, in this study, subjects of both races showed the same trends, suggesting that the other race effect is a generalized phenomenon experienced by people of more than one race.
psychology  race  science 
november 2010 by whip_lash
Observations: Music and speech share a code for communicating sadness in the minor third
In the study, Meagan Curtis of Tufts University's Music Cognition Lab recorded undergraduate actors reading two-syllable lines—like "let's go" and "come here"—with different emotional intonations: anger, happiness, pleasantness and sadness (listen to the recordings here). She then used a computer program to analyze the recorded speech and determine how the pitch changed between syllables. Since the minor third is defined as a specific measurable distance between pitches (a ratio of frequencies), Curtis was able to identify when the actors' speech relied on the minor third. What she found is that the actors consistently used the minor third to express sadness.
language  music  science  speech 
october 2010 by whip_lash
Lies, Damned Lies, and Medical Science - Magazine - The Atlantic
But beyond the headlines, Ioannidis was shocked at the range and reach of the reversals he was seeing in everyday medical research. “Randomized controlled trials,” which compare how one group responds to a treatment against how an identical group fares without the treatment, had long been considered nearly unshakable evidence, but they, too, ended up being wrong some of the time. “I realized even our gold-standard research had a lot of problems,” he says. Baffled, he started looking for the specific ways in which studies were going wrong. And before long he discovered that the range of errors being committed was astonishing: from what questions researchers posed, to how they set up the studies, to which patients they recruited for the studies, to which measurements they took, to how they analyzed the data, to how they presented their results, to how particular studies came to be published in medical journals.
health  science  statistics 
october 2010 by whip_lash
BBC News - Charles Darwin's ecological experiment on Ascension isle
Egged on by Darwin, in 1847 Hooker advised the Royal Navy to set in motion an elaborate plan. With the help of Kew Gardens - where Hooker's father was director - shipments of trees were to be sent to Ascension.

The idea was breathtakingly simple. Trees would capture more rain, reduce evaporation and create rich, loamy soils. The "cinder" would become a garden.
environment  evolution  science  darwin  ecology  ecosystem  terraforming 
september 2010 by whip_lash
The rise of the new agnostics. - By Ron Rosenbaum - Slate Magazine
Faith-based atheism? Yes, alas. Atheists display a credulous and childlike faith, worship a certainty as yet unsupported by evidence—the certainty that they can or will be able to explain how and why the universe came into existence. (And some of them can behave as intolerantly to heretics who deviate from their unproven orthodoxy as the most unbending religious Inquisitor.) - THIS ISN"T QUITE RIGHT.
philosophy  religion  science  agnosticism  atheism 
july 2010 by whip_lash
In the Hunt for Planets, Who Owns the Data? -
The decision to hold back some data, reported on, has divided astronomers. Some say say they do not begrudge the Kepler scientists — who have in some cases devoted their careers to the project — a few more months with their data.

“Kepler was constructed and launched with a comparatively large sum of money for a project that is run by a single team,” said Ben Oppenheimer, an astronomer at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, in an e-mail message. “At this point, I have to say I do think they are being far too restrictive.”
ethics  science 
june 2010 by whip_lash
PhET My Solar System - Motion, Acceleration, Velocity, Circular Motion
Build your own system of heavenly bodies and watch the gravitational ballet. With this orbit simulator, you can set initial positions, velocities, and masses of 2, 3, or 4 bodies, and then see them orbit each other.
astronomy  physics  science 
may 2010 by whip_lash
What's fair? Societal structures, not human nature, teach us
Rousseau, Hobbes, and Locke all meditated on the development of social contracts that they considered necessary for people to operate in large societies. Game theory gives scientists a chance to test some of these ideas with hard data. By having people play anonymous games with money, researchers found that people from larger societies, ones that are more integrated into the market, are more likely to be fair in anonymous dealings; these same people are more willing to punish others when they are unfair. These findings suggest that fairness and punishment in dealings with strangers are largely learned behaviors, and that we need these norms and institutions to prevent our communities from fragmenting.
psychology  science  sociology 
march 2010 by whip_lash
Scott and Scurvy
Now, I had been taught in school that scurvy had been conquered in 1747, when the Scottish physician James Lind proved in one of the first controlled medical experiments that citrus fruits were an effective cure for the disease. From that point on, we were told, the Royal Navy had required a daily dose of lime juice to be mixed in with sailors’ grog, and scurvy ceased to be a problem on long ocean voyages.

But here was a Royal Navy surgeon in 1911 apparently ignorant of what caused the disease, or how to cure it. Somehow a highly-trained group of scientists at the start of the 20th century knew less about scurvy than the average sea captain in Napoleonic times.
history  science 
march 2010 by whip_lash
Op-Ed Contributor - A Grand Bargain Over Evolution -
Since Lewis wrote — and unbeknown to many believers — evolutionary psychologists have developed a plausible account of the moral sense. They say it is in large part natural selection’s way of equipping people to play non-zero-sum games — games that can be win-win if the players cooperate or lose-lose if they don’t.
religion  science  evolution  ethics 
september 2009 by whip_lash
Humans prefer cockiness to expertise - life - 10 June 2009 - New Scientist
The research, by Don Moore of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, shows that we prefer advice from a confident source, even to the point that we are willing to forgive a poor track record. Moore argues that in competitive situations, this can drive those offering advice to increasingly exaggerate how sure they are. And it spells bad news for scientists who try to be honest about gaps in their knowledge.
psychology  science  politics 
july 2009 by whip_lash
“Surge in global temperatures since 1977 can be attributed to a 1976 climate shift in the Pacific Ocean” « Watts Up With That?
Three Australasian researchers have shown that natural forces are the dominant influence on climate, in a study just published in the highly-regarded Journal of Geophysical Research. According to this study little or none of the late 20th century global warming and cooling can be attributed to human activity.
july 2009 by whip_lash
Climate Change and Argumentative Fallacies
Obviously, when it comes to an argument between trained scientific specialists, they ought to ignore the consensus and deal directly with the argument on its merits. But most of us are not actually in any position to deal with the arguments on the merits. Which, of course, is why the ad itself makes only a gesture in the direction of an argument and then proceeds to the long list of names.
globalwarming  politics  science 
april 2009 by whip_lash
How to detect lies - body language, reactions, speech patterns
The following techniques to telling if someone is lying are often used by police, and security experts. This knowledge is also useful for managers, employers, and for anyone to use in everyday situations where telling the truth from a lie can help prevent you from being a victim of fraud/scams and other deceptions.
security  tutorial  tips  psychology  science 
january 2009 by whip_lash
Diamonds on Demand | Science & Nature | Smithsonian Magazine
I'm waiting to visit Apollo Diamond, a company about as secretive as a Soviet-era spy agency. Its address isn't published.
business  economics  finance  diamond  science 
june 2008 by whip_lash
Why does organic milk last so much longer than regular milk?: Scientific American
The process that gives the milk a longer shelf life is called ultrahigh temperature (UHT) processing or treatment, in which milk is heated to 280 degrees Fahrenheit (138 degrees Celsius) for two to four seconds, killing any bacteria in it.
science  food 
june 2008 by whip_lash
The freedom to say 'no' - The Boston Globe
Why aren't there more women in science and engineering? Controversial new research suggests: They just aren't interested.
culture  sociology  science 
may 2008 by whip_lash
Overcoming Bias: Biases of Science Fiction
The intelligence and personality integration of fictional characters cannot be much higher than that of the writer...The track record of SF writers as prophets, operating within these constraints, has not been impressive.
science  literature 
july 2007 by whip_lash
Skeptic: eSkeptic: Wednesday, July 4th, 2007
[Dawkins] has not done any original work on the subject and he has not fairly represented the work of his colleagues.
evolution  religion  science 
july 2007 by whip_lash
The new age of ignorance | Review | The Observer
The implications of this, and the resultant general scientific illiteracy, she believes, are possibly catastrophic. Forty-two per cent of Americans in a recent survey said they believed that humans had been on Earth since the beginning of time.
culture  science  education 
july 2007 by whip_lash
Our Biotech Future - The New York Review of Books
I predict that the domestication of biotechnology will dominate our lives during the next fifty years at least as much as the domestication of computers has dominated our lives during the previous fifty years.
biology  science 
july 2007 by whip_lash
Bad Astronomy Blog » Is the Sun from another galaxy?
But their conclusion — that we come from the Sagittarius Dwarf — is complete nonsense. Here’s why.
astronomy  science  space 
june 2007 by whip_lash
Darwin Still Rules, but Some Biologists Dream of a Paradigm Shift - New York Times
Is Darwin due for an upgrade? There are growing calls among some evolutionary biologists for just such a revision, although they differ about what form this might take.
science  biology  genetics  evolution 
june 2007 by whip_lash
Scientists Reverse Mental Retardation in Mice: Scientific American
In a case of life imitating art, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) reported today that they had successfully reversed mental retardation in mice, just as scientists did in the classic 1966 novel Flowers for Algernon.
genetics  science  biology 
june 2007 by whip_lash
Scientists Now Know: We're Not From Here!
The Sun, the Moon, our planet and its siblings, were not born into the familiar band of stars known as the Milky Way galaxy, but we actually belong to a strange formation with the unfamiliar name of the Sagittarius Dwarf galaxy.
astronomy  globalwarming  science 
june 2007 by whip_lash
Inability to meet "grand challenges" of physics likely to hurt US competitiveness
It highlights the fact that government funding has not kept up with the rising costs of research at the same time that the corporate-funded research lab system has collapsed... US scientific productivity has stagnated.
economics  physics  science 
june 2007 by whip_lash
Hurricane Science - New York Times
Stand atop any levee in the New Orleans area, and one question will offer itself, unbidden, to the mind: Is this pile of dirt tall enough to stand up to the next storm?
climate  weather  science  hurricane 
may 2007 by whip_lash

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