I'm super-excited about Scientific Americans' new network of science blogs. This kind of network is nothing new—Wired has a science blog group, so does the Public Library of Science, and Discover. And, of course, there's the classic Science Blogs community. (And those are only a sampling.) Sci Am has some very cool stuff going on, though, that I've not seen elsewhere, including Expeditions, a blog that will follow a changing lineup of real scientific field research projects as reported by scientists, students, and embedded journalists. Expect some links to Sci Am blogs over the next few days as I explore the network.
"Herd immunity" is the magic phrase – the finish line we've all been running toward – that will get us to the other side of the devastating Covid pandemic. Once we get there, masks will be mostly a thing of the past (or so we hope). Handshakes and hugs might even come back. And now… READ THE REST
Named after the Lernaean Hydra, a many-headed water monster of Greek and Roman mythology, the real hydra is a small fresh-water creature with incredible biological superpowers that enable it to regenerate and live "forever." Unlike the Lernaean Hydra, it doesn't guard an entrance into the underworld. We think. From KQED's Deep Look: Cut a hydra… READ THE REST
Scientists recently reported a major milestone in the creation of human-animal hybrids. Researchers from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and colleagues, seen above, injected human stem cells into monkey embryos in vitro. Several of the chimera embryos survived for 19 days. Eventually, these hybrid animals could be used for testing new drugs or to… READ THE REST
May 17th is the 2021 U.S. tax filing deadline – and the way the past year has gone for millions of Americans, that extra month-long extension to get their 2020 return finished is a welcome sight. That's especially true for those already knee-deep in a sticky tax situation that was likely made worse by all… READ THE REST
The ostrich analogy is real. Nobody should be sticking their head in the sand to escape unpleasant truths. And one such unpleasant reality is that for all their functionality, headphones can be incredibly dangerous. An overwhelming 96 percent of Americans say it's dangerous to wear headphones or earbuds when driving. That number remains high for… READ THE REST
Students and staff at Stanford University, the University of California, the University of Colorado, and other institutions were warned to be on alert after a widespread security breach compromised personal data files during a nationwide cyberattack on the schools' computer systems. Meanwhile, someone is selling personal information on 21 million users of the mobile parking… READ THE REST