Significant reduction in fatal car crashes after increase in alcohol taxes

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:13pm
Increasing state alcohol taxes could prevent thousands of deaths a year from car crashes, say researchers, who found alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes decreased after taxes on beer, wine and spirits went up in Illinois.
Categories: Science

Soft, energy-efficient robotic wings

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:13pm
Researchers have discovered a new resonance phenomenon in a dielectric elastomer rotary joint that can make the artificial joint bend up and down, like a flapping wing.
Categories: Science

Restoring IL-17 may treat skin infections related to chronic alcohol consumption

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:13pm
Alcoholism takes a toll on every aspect of a person's life, including skin problems. Now, a new research report helps explain why this happens and what might be done to address it. "The clinical association between alcoholism and severe skin infection is well established," said one expert. "The ability to experimentally model skin immune deficiencies that occur in chronic alcoholics opens up new avenues to test immune-based therapies to better protect this population and thereby limit the spread of infectious disease to the broader community as well."
Categories: Science

The rapid rise of human language

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:13pm
Human language likely developed quite rapidly into a sophisticated system, a linguist contends. Instead of mumbles and grunts, people deployed syntax and structures resembling the ones we use today, this expert suggests.
Categories: Science

Memory immune cells that screen intruders as they enter lymph nodes

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:13pm
A new population of 'memory' immune cells has been discovered by scientists, throwing light on what the body does when it sees a microbe for the second time. This insight, and others like it, will enable the development of more targeted and effective vaccines.
Categories: Science

Genetic variability in the platelet linked to increased risk for clotting

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:08pm
Coronary heart disease and stroke, two of the leading causes of death in the United States, are diseases associated with heightened platelet reactivity. A new study in humans suggests an underlying reason for the variability in the risk of clotting is due to a genetic variation in a receptor on the surface of the platelet.
Categories: Science

Age matters: Discovering why antidepressants don't work well for kids

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:08pm
A new study had researchers seeking answers to why the therapeutic benefit afforded by SSRIs was so limited in children and teenagers. If researchers can uncover the biological mechanisms preventing available treatments from producing antidepressant effects, scientists can then target those mechanisms to develop new antidepressants that will treat childhood and adolescent depression more effectively.
Categories: Science

Google Unveils a Stick That Turns Any Display Into a PC

Wired News - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:03pm

If you plug the stick into an LCD display or a TV, you can run the sort of software you typically run on a personal computer.

The post Google Unveils a Stick That Turns Any Display Into a PC appeared first on WIRED.








Categories: Science

Developer of 'Banished' Develops His Own Shading Language

Slashdot - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 5:00pm
jones_supa writes Luke Hodorowicz, the hard-working developer behind the townbuilding strategy computer game Banished, has designed a novel GPU shading language and written a compiler for it. The language has been christened 'Shining Rock Shading Language' (SRSL) and it outputs the program in several other shading languages. The first goal for the language was to treat the vertex, fragment and geometry shader as a single program. The language sees the graphics pipeline as a stream of data, followed by some code, which outputs a stream of data, and then more code runs, and another stream of data is output. Body text of the shaders is very C-like and should be understood easily coming from other shading languages. SRSL has all the intrinsic functions you would expect from HLSL or GLSL. All types are HLSL-style. Loops and conditionals are available, but switch statements and global variables are seen redundant and not implemented. Luke's blog post tells more about the details of the language, complemented with examples.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Finally! You Can Now Play Pac-Man on Google Maps

Wired News - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:58pm

Use Google Maps to play a game of Pac-Man, generated from the roads you can find anywhere in the world.

The post Finally! You Can Now Play Pac-Man on Google Maps appeared first on WIRED.








Categories: Science

What Would It Be Like to Live on Pluto?

Space.com - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:46pm
Much is unknown about Pluto, including what its surface features are like and what kind of weather patterns it has, if any.
Categories: Science

Living on Pluto: Dwarf Planet Facts Explained (Infographic)

Space.com - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:38pm
Pluto was considered a planet until 2006, when it was reclassified as a dwarf planet.
Categories: Science

Why America's Obsession With STEM Education Is Dangerous

Slashdot - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:36pm
HughPickens.com writes According to an op-ed by Fareed Zakaria in the Washington Post, if Americans are united in any conviction these days, it is that we urgently need to shift the country's education toward the teaching of specific, technical skills, expand STEM courses (science, technology, engineering and math) and deemphasize the humanities. "It is the only way, we are told, to ensure that Americans survive in an age defined by technology and shaped by global competition. The stakes could not be higher." But according to Zakaria the dismissal of broad-based learning, however, comes from a fundamental misreading of the facts — and puts America on a dangerously narrow path for the future. As Steve Jobs once explained "it's in Apple's DNA that technology alone is not enough — that it's technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the result that makes our hearts sing." Zakaria says that no matter how strong your math and science skills are, you still need to know how to learn, think and even write and cites Jeff Bezos' insistence that writing a memo that makes sense is an even more important skill to master. "Full sentences are harder to write," says Bezos. "They have verbs. The paragraphs have topic sentences. There is no way to write a six-page, narratively structured memo and not have clear thinking." "This doesn't in any way detract from the need for training in technology," concludes Zakaria, "but it does suggest that as we work with computers (which is really the future of all work), the most valuable skills will be the ones that are uniquely human, that computers cannot quite figure out — yet. And for those jobs, and that life, you could not do better than to follow your passion, engage with a breadth of material in both science and the humanities, and perhaps above all, study the human condition."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Best Space Books and Sci-Fi: A Space.com Reading List

Space.com - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:23pm
Space.com's editors present a reading list for space and sci-fi lovers, as well as children who are interested in astronomy and spaceflight.
Categories: Science

Bacteria play an important role in long term storage of carbon in the ocean

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:16pm
The ocean is a large reservoir of dissolved organic molecules, and many of these molecules are stable against microbial utilization for hundreds to thousands of years. They contain a similar amount of carbon as compared to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Researchers found answers to questions about the origin of these persistent molecules in a recent study.
Categories: Science

Brittle bone disease: Drug research offers hope

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:16pm
A drug being developed to treat osteoporosis may also be useful for treating osteogenesis imperfecta or brittle bone disease, a rare but potentially debilitating bone disorder that that is present from birth, scientists say.
Categories: Science

Early education narrows the achievement gap with younger starts and longer stays

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:16pm
New research reveals high-quality early education is especially advantageous for children when they start younger and continue longer. Not only does more high-quality early education significantly boost the language skills of children from low-income families, children whose first language is not English benefit even more.
Categories: Science

Wobbly no more: Work on analogical processing helps children learn key engineering principle

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:16pm
Children love to build things. Often half the fun for them is building something and then knocking it down. But in a new study children had just as much fun learning how to keep their masterpieces upright -- they learned a key elementary engineering principle.
Categories: Science

Intestinal bacteria can be used to classify effects of different diseases

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:14pm
It is possible to quantify and classify the effects of different diseases on the activity of intestinal bacteria, new research demonstrates for the first time. Human intestinal flora, known as microbiota, can be considered as an additional organ in the body. It consists of millions of bacteria that interact with each other and with the body, thus affecting its functioning and health. It is known that many intestinal disorders such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and diseases such as obesity, cancer and autoimmune diseases can cause changes in the composition of gut bacteria.
Categories: Science

Can 'ghosts' cause bad air? Poor indoor air quality and 'sightings'

Science Daily - Tue, 31/03/2015 - 4:12pm
A team of researchers is studying possible links between reported hauntings and indoor air quality. It is known that some fungi, such as rye ergot fungus, may cause severe psychosis in humans.
Categories: Science