Posts tagged science

Posted 1 year ago
Since her death in 1979, the woman who discovered what the universe is made of has not so much as received a memorial plaque. Her newspaper obituaries do not mention her greatest discovery. […] Every high school student knows that Isaac Newton discovered gravity, that Charles Darwin discovered evolution, and that Albert Einstein discovered the relativity of time. But when it comes to the composition of our universe, the textbooks simply say that the most abundant atom in the universe is hydrogen. And no one ever wonders how we know.

Jeremy Knowles, discussing the complete lack of recognition Cecilia Payne gets, even today, for her revolutionary discovery.  (via yasodhara)

Our Lady of Hydrogen.

Posted 1 year ago

Charles Darwin gets 4,000 write-in votes in Georgia | Reuters

In a September 27 speech, Paul Broun, a physician and member of the U.S. House of Representatives Science, Space and Technology Committee, called evolution and the Big Bang Theory, “lies straight from the pit of hell.”

Since Broun, a Republican, had no opposition in the general election, a University of Georgia plant biology professor, Jim Leebens-Mack, and others started a write-in campaign for Darwin, the father of the theory of evolution.

"We don’t feel our interests are being best served by an anti-science fundamentalist representing us on the Science, Space and Technology Committee," Leebens-Mack told Reuters on Friday.

Posted 1 year ago

Smoke-free laws are saving lives -

Heart attacks and other sudden cardiac deaths drop when people aren’t smoking, and aren’t exposed to so much smoke.

Posted 1 year ago
A new study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences offers evidence of bias among scientists — male and female scientists alike — against female students. The study was based on evaluations by scientists of hypothetical student applications for a lab manager position, with the application materials identical in every way, except that half of the pool received applications with a male name and the other half received applications with a female name….

The scientists evaluating these applications (which were identical in every way except the gender of the “submitter”) rated the male student more competent, more likely to be hired, deserving of a better salary, and worth spending more time mentoring. The gaps were significant.

Female scientists were as likely as male scientists to evaluate the students this way….

This is not surprising in any way. It’s just nice to have scientific proof of it.

(via attackofthequasars)

Full link here.

Strangely, there are lots of posts elsewhere on Tumblr that are sticking to the old line that the whole problem is that women are choosing to work in flower shops and make babies.  Who knew?

Posted 1 year ago

Now available in pink, and with 43% more horsehead!


The Horsehead Nebula

Credit & Copyright: Nigel Sharp (NOAO), KPNO, AURA, NSF

Posted 2 years ago

Love Love Love!


Minimal Posters - Six Women Who Changed Science. And The World.

Posted 2 years ago

Sand!!  Thank you, Professor Greenberg!

Posted 2 years ago
"We were not expecting this, but as scientists, it is our duty to let the evidence change our minds." He added that he now considers himself a "converted sceptic" and his views had undergone a "total turnaround" in a short space of time.

Climate change study forces sceptical scientists to change minds | Environment | The Guardian.

Science: it’s about working with the information you have, not the information you wish you had.  Cool, no?

Posted 2 years ago

Ancient Feces Found in Oregon Cave Dispels First American Theory - SFGate

This is one of those scientific discoveries that your colleagues make posters of to hang in your office, because of the details.  :)  

Yes, the poo was 12,300 years old.

Posted 2 years ago

A Poison for Assassins | Wired Science |

By mass, polonium-210 is considered to be about 250,000 times more poisonous than hydrogen cyanide. Toxicologists estimate that an amount the size of a grain of salt could be fatal to the average adult.

In other words, a victim would never taste a lethal dose in food or drink. In the case of Litvinenko, investigators believed that he received his dose of polonium-210 in a cup of tea, dosed during a meeting with two Russian agents. (Just as an aside, alpha particles tend not to set off radiation detectors so it’s relatively easy to smuggle from country to country.) Another assassin advantage is that illness comes on gradually, making it hard to pinpoint the event. Yet another advantage is that polonium poisoning is so rare that it’s not part of a standard toxics screen. In Litvinenko’s case, the poison wasn’t identified until shortly after his death.

Things you should know about polonium-210, if you happen to know governments who want you dead.