There's a major, ongoing drought in Texas, Oklahoma, and southern Kansas. As of July 26th, Amarillo had clocked in a record-breaking 30 days of 100+-degree temperatures. Wichita Falls, Texas, is on a (so far) 50-day streak with no precipitation. (If the trend continues to August 8th, as is predicted, it'll break into Wichita Falls' list of top 10 runs of precipitation-free days.)
All of that means lower water levels in local lakes. And, in Nacogdoches, the exposed lakebed revealed something very interesting—a part of the space shuttle Columbia, lost when then that shuttle disintegrated upon reentry in 2003. At the Houston Chronicle website, Eric Berger explained that this sphere is actually a tank for holding the cryogenic hydrogen that was critical to generating electricity via chemical reactions in the shuttle's fuel cell power plants.
NASA has reminded Texans that even though eight years have passed this, and any other shuttle parts that might turn up, are government property. It's a crime to tamper with them or squirrel them away.
Via Gizmodo and looprock
The YouTube channel HooplaKidzLab demonstrates some awesome science experiments you can try with your kids this summer. Here’s another video from the channel about how to make a robotic arm out of popsicle sticks:
Scientists discovered this new species of “glass frog” in Ecuador’s Amazon lowlands. Hyalinobatrachium yaku’s belly is so transparent that you can clearly see its kidneys, bladder, and beating heart. From Science News: Yaku means “water” in Kichwa, a language spoken in Ecuador and parts of Peru where H. yaku may also live. Glass frogs, like […]
Jennifer Raff — a bioanthropologist and geneticist who researches and teaches at U Kansas and U Texas — provides some excellent advice and context on how to read a scientific paper, from figuring out which papers and journals are worthy of your attention to understanding the paper in its wider context in the relevant field.
Despite the upfront cost, electric toothbrushes are much better at removing plaque than those freebies from the dentist’s office. For those who struggle to fill the American Dental Association’s recommended two minutes of brushing time, or anyone with limited dexterity, a sonic toothbrush can give your oral care routine a boost.To keep your chops healthy […]
Learning a new language will give your resume an upgrade, sure, but it will also provide a huge cognitive boost for mental tasks outside of translation and conversation. Bilingual brains have been shown to be better at handling multiple concurrent tasks, and gaining fluency in a new tongue is an amazing way to improve memory, […]
If you struggle to get a good night’s rest, consider replacing your pillows before dropping hundreds on a new mattress. You can give your tired neck a break with a 2-pack of memory foam pillows, available now in the Boing Boing Store.Each of these pillows is stuffed with cooling polyurethane foam that molds to your […]