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An Unexpected Forest Helper: Mistletoe

Long thought a tree-killing bane, parasitic mistletoe appears to do much more good than harm to a forest ecology.

Red Blood Cells Are Frisbees, Tanks and Wheels

Cells as commonplace as red blood cells still keep researchers wondering how they perform their job so well.

Astronomy Grab Bag

For year's end, here's a clean-out of astronomy articles—from planetary science to cosmology—to motivate further inquiry.

Nose Has Gain Control

Sound engineers know how to use gain control to avoid “redlining” or saturating the signal while amplifying weak but important signals.  Your nose knows that trick, too. The sense of smell is complex because of the tremendous variety of odorant molecules that must be interpreted.  Molecules that trigger signals in the initial neurons trigger a […]

Eugenics in Space

To "keep evolution on a favorable track," spacefaring humans may want to cull bad genes, a futurist says.

Skin Uses Master Control

It would be hard to see how evolution would deal with a story about skin development. Maybe that's why it was barely mentioned.

Carol of the Birds

Can birds make you happy?  Some scientists think so, but why? There seems to be a connection between seeing birds in their natural habitat and a person’s sense of well-being, reported Science Daily. Whether that is true may be a function of the setting and species of bird (buzzards, ostriches probably not rating as high […]

Titan Is as Titan Does

Saturn's giant moon Titan keeps revealing mysterious dynamics in the here and now, leaving interpretation to fallible scientists who sometimes predicted otherwise.

Intelligence Is Not a Quotient

Can your intelligence be reduced to a number on a linear scale? That would be highly misleading, a research study concluded.

The Holly and the I.D. – News from Epigenetics

Holly leaf shape may be due to epigenetic control – one of several recent developments in the field of epigenetics.

The Evolution of Boxing

A new story is making the rounds: the human hand evolved to punch others' lights out.

Globular Clusters Look Young and Old: Is This Scientific Explanation?

Globular clusters supposedly all formed at the same time long ago, but some look young. How do astronomers rescue the belief that they are ancient groupings of stars?

Hindcasting the Grand Canyon: Geologist Rejects Dam Breach Theory

A geologist rejects the idea that an ancient lake spilled and carved Grand Canyon, but maybe he misrepresents the theory. Besides, how can geologists "hindcast" an unobserved event without philosophical assumptions?

Eye Retina Is Analog-to-Digital Converter

Before you see, your retina has done multiple digital transformations on the incoming signal.

Ediacarans Not Related to Cambrian Animals

Two surprises come from a re-analysis of classic Ediacaran fossils from Australia: they're unrelated to Cambrian animals, and they may have lived on land.
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