Understanding The Universe

Do You Carry Neanderthal DNA? The Shape of Your Skull May Tell.

The shape of your brain may say a lot about the Neanderthal in you. New research has found that modern humans carrying certain genetic fragments from our closest extinct relatives may have more oblong brains and skulls than other people.

Modern humans possess unique, relatively globular skulls and brains. In contrast, the closest extinct relatives of modern humans, Neanderthals, have the elongated skulls and brains that are typical of most primates.

Previous research had suggested these contrasting skull shapes might reflect differences in the size of various brain regions in modern humans and Neanderthals, and how these brain areas were wired together. "However, brain tissue doesn't fossilize, so the underlying biology has remained elusive," co-lead study author Philipp Gunz, a paleoanthropologist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, told Live Science. [3D Images: Exploring the Human Brain]

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The Planet Is Dangerously Close to the Tipping Point for a 'Hothouse Earth'


By Yasemin Saplakoglu, Staff Writer - Live Science

It's the year 2300. Extreme weather events such as building-flattening hurricanes, years-long droughts and wildfires are so common that they no longer make headlines. The last groups of humans left near the sizzling equator pack their bags and move toward the now densely populated poles.

This so-called "hothouse Earth," where global temperatures will be 7 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit (4 to 5 degrees Celsius) higher than preindustrial temperatures and sea levels will be 33 to 200 feet (10 to 60 meters) higher than today, is hard to imagine — but easy to fall into, said a new perspective article published today (Aug. 6) in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. [Top 9 Ways the World Could End]

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Galileo Would Be Stunned: Jupiter Now Has 79 Moons


Source - NPR

More than 400 years after Galileo Galilei discovered the first of Jupiter's moons, astronomers have found a dozen more — including one they've dubbed "oddball" — orbiting the planet. That brings the total number of Jovian moons to 79.

The team of astronomers originally wasn't even looking for the 12 new moons. Scott Sheppard of the Carnegie Institution for Science says he and his colleagues had been trying to track down a giant planet they think may be lurking at the outer reaches of our solar system.

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CRISPR Gene Editing May Be Doing More Damage Than Scientists Thought


Source: By Brandon Specktor-Live Science

Like a molecular ninja, the genome-editing tool CRISPR-Cas9 slices through ultraspecific segments of DNA to cut out unwanted bits of genetic code. It's a precise and promising method of genetic editing that's widely used in scientific research. And scientists hope it could one day be used to selectively remove genes that result in medical problems such as HIV, sickle cell disease and cancer.

Unfortunately, a new study published today (July 16) in the journal Nature Biotechnology suggests that this day may be further off than expected — and that CRISPR's cellular swordsmanship may result in much more collateral damage than previously thought.

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Watch the live feed from SpaceX’s Roadster-driving Starman in space


SpaceX now has a live feed of its Mars-bound simulated astronaut, a dummy wearing the private space company’s new crew uniform. There are cameras mounted on the Tesla Roadster the dummy is “driving,” which was the primary payload for SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy launch, which went off almost perfectly as planned by SpaceX earlier today.

The live stream switches between cameras, including one mounted on the hood, one behind the astronaut’s shoulder and one facing back down to Earth. It’s quite the view, and it’s amazing.

This is easily the most fun payload ever sent to space, so good job Elon. Also, kudos on the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy ref.

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Cheddar Man: DNA shows early Briton had dark skin


A cutting-edge scientific analysis shows that a Briton from 10,000 years ago had dark brown skin and blue eyes.

Researchers from London's Natural History Museum extracted DNA from Cheddar Man, Britain's oldest complete skeleton, which was discovered in 1903.

University College London researchers then used the subsequent genome analysis for a facial reconstruction.

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NASA lends a hand to new American Girl doll with Mars aspirations The company partnered with the space agency to inspire kids to pursue STEM-related fields.


David Lumbhide@s th-meta">, @OutOnALumb

While the American Girl brand is well-known for teaching the past through dolls with fictional ties to important events, its latest aims to inspire youths to make history themselves.

On the first day of 2018, the next American Girl will hit stores: 11-year-old Luciana Vega, who aspires to be the first person to reach Mars.

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This Is What Will Happen in The Next 5,000,000,000 years

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Is The Universe Conscious?


Source: NPR

The history of science — in particular, the physical sciences, like physics and astronomy can be told as the incremental realization that there is large-scale coherence in the universe.

By large-scale coherence, I mean that some of the same physical laws hold at scales as diverse as the atom and the galaxy, and even the universe as a whole. In a sense, the universe speaks one language and scientists act as the interpreters, translating this language in terms that humans can understand and relate to.

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Star Gives Birth to Possible Black Hole in Hubble and Spitzer Images

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Neil deGrasse Tyson thinks there's a 'very high' chance the universe is just a simulation

As we approach the end of 2016, a number of people might be wondering whether there's some chance that the past year was just some sort of weird dream.

It turns out that if you ask the scientists whose job it is to probe the nature of reality, the answer is actually: Maybe.

Maybe everything that's happening is just a simulation being run on a computer by some smarter, higher order being (with a weird sense of humor).

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Quantum Gravity Research Could Unearth the True Nature of Time


THEORETICAL PHYSICISTS STRIVING to unify quantum mechanics and general relativity into an all-encompassing theory of quantum gravity face what’s called the “problem of time.”

In quantum mechanics, time is universal and absolute; its steady ticks dictate the evolving entanglements between particles. But in general relativity (Albert Einstein’s theory of gravity), time is relative and dynamical, a dimension that’s inextricably interwoven with directions x, y and z into a four-dimensional “space-time” fabric. The fabric warps under the weight of matter, causing nearby stuff to fall toward it (this is gravity), and slowing the passage of time relative to clocks far away. Or hop in a rocket and use fuel rather than gravity to accelerate through space, and time dilates; you age less than someone who stayed at home.

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The Woman Who Might Find Us Another Earth.

The Woman Who Might Find Us Another Earth.


The star-crossed life of Sara Seager, an astrophysicist obsessedwith discovering distant worlds.

ike many astrophysicists, Sara Seager sometimes has a problem with her perception of scale. Knowing that there are hundreds of billions of galaxies, and that each might contain hundreds of billions of stars, can make the lives of astrophysicists and even those closest to them seem insignificant. Their work can also, paradoxically, bolster their sense of themselves. Believing that you alone might answer the question “Are we alone?” requires considerable ego. Astrophysicists are forever toggling between feelings of bigness and smallness, of hubris and humility, depending on whether they’re looking out or within.

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The Human Family Tree

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The science of Human evolution

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Alien World 'Proxima b' Around Nearest Star Could Be Earth-Like+

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What is "The ZONE"? Is is just for Athletes?

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Is Time Travel Possible?

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Does the Ocean Think?

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Is God an Alien Concep?

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