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  1. #496
    Batoutahelius road runner's Avatar
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    New Spider Species Named After Harry Potter Sorting Hat

    Scientists in India have named a new species of spider after famed (fictitious) wizard Godric Gryffindor from JK Rowling’s Harry Potter novels due to its resemblance of Hogwarts’ magical Sorting Hat.

    The new species, which measures just 7mm, has been named Eriovixia Gryffindori, after Gryffindor, one of the founding wizards of Hogwarts, and original owner of the hat used by the wizarding school to sort students into their houses.

    ...

    meep meep

  2. #497
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Last person born in the 19th century dies

    Italian Emma Morano, last known survivor of 19th century, dies at 117
    Fanny Carrier, Agence France-Presse, 16 April 2017

    Emma Morano, an Italian woman believed to have been the oldest person alive and the last survivor of the 19th century, died Saturday at the age of 117, Italian media reported.

    Morano, born on November 29 1899, died at her home in Verbania, in northern Italy, the reports said.

    "She had an extraordinary life, and we will always remember her strength to move forward in life," said Silvia Marchionini, the mayor of Verbania, a small village of some 2,000 residents.

    According to the US-based Gerontology Research Group (GRG), Morano ceded the crown of the world's oldest human being to Jamaican Violet Brown, who was born on March 10, 1900.

    Morano's death, at the age of 117 years and 137 days, means there is no one living known to have been born before 1900.

    In an interview with AFP last year, she put her longevity down to her diet.

    "I eat two eggs a day, and that's it. And cookies. But I do not eat much because I have no teeth," she said in her home at the time, where the Guinness World Records certificate declaring her to be the oldest person alive held pride of place on a marble-topped chest of drawers.

    The world longevity record, he noted, remained with French woman Jeanne Calment, who died at 122 in 1997, having outlived both her daughter and grandson. "That's super confirmed," Young said.

    Emma Morano goes into the record books as the fifth longest life ever verified.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

  3. #498
    CC International Master Kaitlin's Avatar
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    Thumbs up March for Science in April

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-2...vement/8463800

    Science is becoming a "movement"
    (Religion is losing ground)

    .. this Caketin is full of little spiders and watermelon seeds.....

    ..Chess is all about fear and psychology

    ..Chess is like an exam..... you havent studied for

    ..If you're good at Chess it means you are very intelligent and could potentialy do great things
    ..... but that you might have wasted that playing way too much chess

  4. #499
    CC International Master Agent Smith's Avatar
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    Hmmm... I don't think so. Mainstream media has seriously marginalised science to make a few bucks (and in Fox/News corps case, for poiltical gains too).

    Chumps "presidency" is just the beginning.
    Last edited by Agent Smith; 23-04-2017 at 03:22 PM.

  5. #500
    CC International Master Kaitlin's Avatar
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    Stephen Hawkins finally ratifies what I've been saying for years https://youtu.be/t7F2dueX58w
    .. this Caketin is full of little spiders and watermelon seeds.....

    ..Chess is all about fear and psychology

    ..Chess is like an exam..... you havent studied for

    ..If you're good at Chess it means you are very intelligent and could potentialy do great things
    ..... but that you might have wasted that playing way too much chess

  6. #501
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kaitlin View Post
    Stephen Hawkins finally ratifies what I've been saying for years https://youtu.be/t7F2dueX58w
    Unlikely to be able to get everyone off the planet but we could colonise other planets/moons which could be useful.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  7. #502
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

  8. #503
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Ancient Roman concrete was better than ours, thanks to volcanic ash and rock chunks

    New studies of ancient concrete could teach us to do as the Romans did
    phys.org, 3 July 2017

    Around A.D. 79, Roman author Pliny the Elder wrote in his Naturalis Historia that concrete structures in harbors, exposed to the constant assault of the saltwater waves, become "a single stone mass, impregnable to the waves and every day stronger."

    He wasn't exaggerating. While modern marine concrete structures crumble within decades, 2,000-year-old Roman piers and breakwaters endure to this day, and are stronger now than when they were first constructed. University of Utah geologist Marie Jackson studies the minerals and microscale structures of Roman concrete as she would a volcanic rock. She and her colleagues have found that seawater filtering through the concrete leads to the growth of interlocking minerals that lend the concrete added cohesion. The results are published today in American Mineralogist [Phillipsite and Al-tobermorite mineral cements produced through low-temperature water-rock reactions in Roman marine concrete, which even used my favorite technique of Raman spectroscopy].

    Roman concrete vs. Portland cement

    Romans made concrete by mixing volcanic ash with lime and seawater to make a mortar, and then incorporating into that mortar chunks of volcanic rock, the "aggregate" in the concrete. The combination of ash, water, and quicklime produces what is called a pozzolanic reaction, named after the city of Pozzuoli in the Bay of Naples. The Romans may have gotten the idea for this mixture from naturally cemented volcanic ash deposits called tuff that are common in the area, as Pliny described.

    Modern Portland cement concrete also uses rock aggregate, but with an important difference: the sand and gravel particles are intended to be inert. Any reaction with the cement paste could form gels that expand and crack the concrete. "This alkali-silica reaction occurs throughout the world and it's one of the main causes of destruction of Portland cement concrete structures," Jackson says.

    The team concluded that when seawater percolated through the concrete in breakwaters and in piers, it dissolved components of the volcanic ash and allowed new minerals to grow from the highly alkaline leached fluids, particularly Al-tobermorite and phillipsite. This Al-tobermorite has silica-rich compositions, similar to crystals that form in volcanic rocks. The crystals have platy shapes that reinforce the cementing matrix. The interlocking plates increase the concrete's resistance to brittle fracture.
    Last edited by Capablanca-Fan; 08-07-2017 at 07:22 AM.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

  9. #504
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Deeply divergent archaic mitochondrial genome provides lower time boundary for African gene flow into Neanderthals

    Ancient DNA is revealing new insights into the genetic relationship between Pleistocene hominins and modern humans. Nuclear DNA indicated Neanderthals as a sister group of Denisovans after diverging from modern humans. However, the closer affinity of the Neanderthal mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to modern humans than Denisovans has recently been suggested as the result of gene flow from an African source into Neanderthals before 100,000 years ago. Here we report the complete mtDNA of an archaic femur from the Hohlenstein–Stadel (HST) cave in southwestern Germany. HST carries the deepest divergent mtDNA lineage that splits from other Neanderthals ∼270,000 years ago, providing a lower boundary for the time of the putative mtDNA introgression event. We demonstrate that a complete Neanderthal mtDNA replacement is feasible over this time interval even with minimal hominin introgression. The highly divergent HST branch is indicative of greater mtDNA diversity during the Middle Pleistocene than in later periods.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  10. #505
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    On the trail of dragons with blood that can save people’s lives
    New Scientist, 9 August 2017

    The dragon watches me with cold, dark eyes, tasting the air with a hissing yellow tongue that conceals rows of needle-sharp teeth and bacteria-strewn saliva. It’s hard to imagine these lizards as anything but a significant threat to human life – and they do occasionally kill people.

    Yet in a strange twist, dragon blood is now emerging as a valuable resource that may be one of our best hopes for curing diseases we can’t seem to beat.

    Komodos generally eat carrion, which may be tainted with disease, but they rarely succumb to illness. Investigations showed that this is because the lizards’ blood is loaded with antimicrobial peptides, or AMPs – an all-purpose immune defence.

    The hope is that those AMPs could be used as antibiotics to beat the growing number of resistant bacteria threatening hundreds of thousands of human lives around the world.

    A world away from Komodo, Barney Bishop at Virginia’s George Mason University and his colleagues have spent the past five years studying dragon blood—along with blood extracted from alligators and other reptiles. He’s confident that his research could lead to a new generation of powerful antibiotics. So far, the researchers have identified nearly 50 AMPs with drug potential.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

  11. #506
    CC Grandmaster Ian Murray's Avatar
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    Oldest recorded solar eclipse helps date the Egyptian pharaohs
    Science Daily
    29.10.17

    Researchers have pinpointed the date of what could be the oldest solar eclipse yet recorded. The event, which occurred on 30 October 1207 BC, is mentioned in the Bible, and could have consequences for the chronology of the ancient world.

    Using a combination of the biblical text and an ancient Egyptian text, the researchers were then able to refine the dates of the Egyptian pharaohs, in particular the dates of the reign of Ramesses the Great. The results are published in the Royal Astronomical Society journal Astronomy & Geophysics....

  12. #507
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Sounds interesting if accepted by historians. The dating is certainly not outlandish and within a few years of the most commonly quoted dates for the reign of Ramesses.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

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