Doctors perform first penis transplant in U.S.

Penis-Transplant-850x478$large

Thomas Manning, 64, is recovering after receiving the first penis transplant in the United States. Manning had his penis amputated in 2012 due to penile cancer. It took 15 hours for surgeons at Massachusetts General Hospital to complete the transplant, medically known as a "gentitourinary vascularized composite allograft." The surgery involved "grafting the complex microscopic vascular and neural structures of a donor organ onto the comparable structures of the recipient." According to the surgeons, the procedure could someday be used for gender reconstruction. From CNN:

Dr. Dicken Ko, director of the hospital's Regional Urology Program, said the objectives of the surgery were primarily to reconstruct the genitalia so that it appeared natural, followed by urinary function and hopefully sexual function. However, Ko added that while sexual function is a goal, reproduction is not, because of a concern surrounding the ethical issues of who the potential father may be.

Read the rest

The mind-blowing neuroscience of hacking your dreams

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1060

Moran Cerf, a pen-testing bank-robber turned horribly misunderstood neuroscientist (previously, previously) gets to do consensual, cutting-edge science on the exposed brains of people with epilepsy while they're having brain surgery. Read the rest

Transport for London blames Tube delays on "wrong type of sun"

maxresdefault

The agency says that the angle of the sunlight that strikes its tracks creates glare that blinds the CCTVs that train-drivers use to ensure that the platform is clear before pulling out of the station. Read the rest

Infested: an itchy, fascinating natural history of the bed bug

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1058
The resurgence of the bed bug caught modern civilization flatfooted: an ancient pestilence dating back to the Pharoahs, gone for two generations, has returned with a vengeance, infesting fancy hotels and slums alike, lining our streets with mattresses spraypainted with the warning BEDBUGS. Infested, science writer Brooke Borel's natural history of the bed bug, looks at the bug's insurgency as a scientific, cultural, and economic phenomenon, and will leave you itching with delight.

Watch Penn and Teller's anti-anti-vaccine rant

screenshot

Penn and Teller's classic takedown of anti-vax bullshittery. And if you don't know, now you know.

Read the rest

Watch the bang as man skips sodium across river

A favorite demonstration in high school science classes of yesteryear, dropping sodium into water is spectacularly explosive. In this video, a fellow attempts to skip a pound of sodium across a river.

Read the rest

Reading With Pictures: awesome, classroom-ready comics for math, social studies, science and language arts

bg

Since its inception as a 2012 Kickstarter, the Reading With Pictures project has gone from strength to strength, culminating in a gorgeous, attractively produced hardcover graphic anthology of delightful comic stories that slot right into standard curriculum in science, math, social studies and language arts. Read the rest

Comics and Science: An Explosive Combination

FCBD2016_FirstSecondBooks_volcanos1

In honor of Free Comic Book Day, we present this essay by Jon Chad, author of Science Comics: Volcanoes: Fire and Life, and the co-author, with Maris Wicks, of "Science Comics," a free comic available in comics stores all over the world today. Read the rest

Scientists view never-before-seen glowing jellyfish in Mariana Trench ocean depths

strange-jelly_1024

Marine biologists with a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expedition in the Mariana Trench encountered a luminous red-and-yellow jellyfish in April, Scientific American reports.

Read the rest

How to wake up without coffee

blogger-image--1895821609

Fascinating, now gimme a double latte. (AsapSCIENCE)

Read the rest

The Planet Remade: frank, clear-eyed book on geoengineering, climate disaster, & humanity's future

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1051
Since its publication in late 2015, science writer Oliver Morton's The Planet Remade: How Geoengineering Could Change the World has swept many "best book" (best science book, best business book, best nonfiction book) and with good reason: though it weighs in at a hefty 440 pages and covers a broad scientific, political and technological territory, few science books are more important, timely and beautifully written.

Kennewick Man was Native American

160427-kennewick

After years of speculation and wrangling over his remains, Kennewick Man turns out to be closely related to contemporary, local Native Americans after all.

Discovered near Kennewick, Wash., in 1996, the skeleton ended up in a tug of war between tribes in the pacific northwest who wanted to bury the remains, and scientists who wanted to study them.

Five Pacific Northwest tribes pressed the Army Corps of Engineers, which has jurisdiction over the bones, to hand them over in accordance with a federal law on the repatriation of remains. However, a group of scientists sued to block the handover, arguing that the skeleton was not associated with a present-day tribe.

Federal judges sided with the scientists, and as a result, the corps retained custody of the skeleton and made it available for study. Now that the studies are finished, the 380 bones and bone fragments are locked away in Seattle at the University of Washington’s Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture.

Some scientists suggested that Kennewick Man might have been a visitor from the Far North, Siberia or perhaps someplace even more exotic. But when geneticists compared DNA from a hand bone with a wide range of samples, they found that the closest match came from members of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.

The burial site will be a secret, so we can have this fight all over again in a few thousand years. Read the rest

NASA releases 4K high-def video of a recent solar flare, and it's pretty awesome

maxresdefault
Our solar system is awesome.

Read the rest

CERN scientists release 300 terabytes of Large Hadron Collider data, free and open

A technician cycles in the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN. [Reuters]

The European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN, has been releasing portions of its research to the public for years. This week's massive 300 terabyte dump of Large Hadron Collider (LHC) data is the biggest yet by a long shot -- and it's all out there, open source, free for the exploration.

Read the rest

Fantastical new print from Daniel Martin Diaz and Pressure Printing

DMD-Anouncement-1

Daniel Martin Diaz teamed up with the fine artisans at Pressure Printing to create this stunning new limited edition print, titled Eternal Universe. It's printed on 29″ × 37 ½″ paper, hand-stained, and signed and numbered in a limited edition of 25. Far fucking out.

More about the printing process on the Pressure Printing blog.

Read the rest

Bellwether: Connie Willis's classic, hilarious novel about the science of trendiness

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1039

It's been nearly 20 years since the publication of Bellwether, Connie Willis's comic novel about scientists caught in the turmoil of bureaucratic fads. I had very fond memories of this book, though I hadn't read it in more than a decade, so I gave the DRM-free audiobook a whirl, and fell in love with it all over again. Read the rest

Star Stuff: Carl Sagan and the Mysteries of the Cosmos

tumblr_o2r75xBUzu1t3i99fo1_1280

See sample pages from this book at Wink.

Read the rest

More posts