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Germs and Venoms Can Heal

Three recent stories indicate that “nasty” things can be good, under the right circumstances: Germs and Aging:  Science Now reported that germs may prolong life.  A study on fruit flies showed that flies whose embryos were exposed to bacteria lived longer than those grown under sterile conditions.  Apparently the germs provide services in regulating genes […]

British Cave Art Wins Admiration

The British are overtaking the French in the ancient cave art competition; National Geographic News reports that “English caves may hold the most elaborate Ice Age cave-art ceiling ever discovered.”  Thought to be 12,000 to 13,000 years old based on radiocarbon results and “stylistic comparison.”  There was some surprise that the art could have survived […]

School Science “Tyranny” Tries to Scare Off Lecture Critical of Darwinism

Is a high school campus an open marketplace of ideas and a guarantor of free speech?  Look at this story in Agape Press about the troubles a high school student endured trying to get Michael Behe to speak at an after-school lecture this past February.  Though an optional event not during normal operating hours, and […]

Humans Lose Some, Win Some in Animal Olympics

Imagine humans competing in Olympic events with animals.  Astrobiology Magazine predicts we would lose many events, but excel in others: “In most cases of physical competition, the animals beat us at our own games,” says the website’s staff writer, Dr. David Noever. 100 Meter Sprint:  Cheetah wins the gold at 3 seconds.  Silver goes to […]

Earth’s Ugly Sister Can’t Get a Date

Venus is the subject of an interview with David Grinspoon of NASA’s Exobiology Research Program in Astrobiology Magazine, and admits that the entire surface of our hellishly hot sister planet looks young.  It appears the globe was resurfaced almost simultaneously in the relatively recent past. Grinspoon relives the surprises from the Magellan mission: We’ve begun to […]

Plants Found Two Miles Under Greenland Ice

According to a press release from University of Colorado,1 remnants of pine needles, bark and grass have been pulled up in an ice core from two miles under the Greenland ice sheet, between the bottom of the ice sheet and bedrock.  This is the first time plant material has been found under the Greenland ice, […]

SETI Ponders the Silence

Since no clear signals from space aliens have yet arrived in 40 years of looking, SETI thinkers are asking why.  They’re coming up with a variety of explanations.  Here are three possibilities from recent articles. Too Soon to Tell.  Seth Shostak of the SETI Institute, writing in the September cover story of Astronomy Magazine, isn’t […]

Dragonfly Inspires Hi-Tech Hovercraft for Mars

Exclusive  Dragonflies possess not only compound eyes like other insects, but additional “simple” eyes called ocelli (sing., ocellum) with full-field retinas like mammalian eyes.  These function as a “horizon sensor/attitude reference system,” according to an engineer trying to copy it.  In an engineering project supported by the military and aerospace, Dr. Jaavan Chahla and an […]

The Evolution of Drunkenness

No kidding; an evolutionist is trying to figure out why humans evolved into the stoned age.  “What Would Darwin Say About Drinking?“ reads the title of an article on WineSpectator.com: “Some Scientists Believe Humans Evolved to Enjoy Alcohol.”  Reporter Jacob Gaffney proposes the strange idea that survival of the fittest produced alcoholics: “your desire to […]

Jupi-Tar?

Among the incomprehensible titles of most papers in the Astrophysical Journal, this one stood out: “Jupiter Formed with More Tar than Ice.”1  Looking at Galileo spacecraft data for oxygen abundance and other things, Katharina Lodders was led to propose the following model: Carbonaceous matter, which has high sticking probabilities, was the agent that sped up […]

T. Rex: I Was a Teenage Monster

The news media quickly latched onto a report in Nature1 that Tyrannosaurus rex had a growth spurt in adolescence.  Dr. Gregory Erickson of Florida State measured growth lines in leg bones and found faster growth between age 14 and 18 on the famous Rex specimen named Sue, says EurekAlert based on info from Florida State […]

ATP Synthase: Another Unexpected Case of Fine Tuning

ATP synthase, the miniature rotary motor that powers our cells, has been a subject of great interest since the elucidation of its rotary function won three scientists a Nobel prize in 1997.  As an example of a precision-crafted, true electric rotary motor in living systems (another being the larger bacterial flagellum), it also provides a […]

A Martian Crust: Was It Alive?

David McKay, the father of the Martian meteorite that started feverish debates about life on Mars in 1996, is at it again.  Now he thinks a mat of crusty soil was made by microbes, according to Space.Com.     In spite of the salty, acidic soil (see 08/06/04 headline), Gilbert Levin, also interviewed by Space.Com, […]

Inner Ear Hairs Provide Optimum Sensitivity

The inner ear cochlea is lined with hair cells that transduce mechanical vibrations into electrical signals for the auditory nerve.  European scientists publishing in PNAS1 measured the sensitivity of inner ear hair cells to mechanical motion, and considering the noise caused by thermal motion, calculated that the ear operates at the optimum level.  The ear […]

Kansas Elects Two ID-Friendly School Board Members

According to John Calvert writing for Access Research Network, Kansans defeated two pro-evolution candidates for the state school board, electing instead Kathy Martin and Steve Abrams who both oppose the “evolution-only” policy.     Martin won against Bruce Wyatt, an incumbent who based his entire campaign on the need to keep intelligent design or creation […]
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