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Weekend Digest, May 6, 2017

Here's a collection of quick takes on interesting developments in the science news, from Saturn to a possible cure for malaria; from your liver to Sunday funnies.

More Soft Tissue Found in Cretaceous Fossil Bird

Unrepentant over extreme falsification, evolutionary paleontologists are just taking it for granted that soft tissue can survive millions of years.

Rethinking Fossils

Every time a new fossil turns up, a theory quakes. New evidence can subject a theory to the falsification test.

Design of Life Update: Birds

Illustra Media’s Design of Life documentaries only began to explore the marvels of life. In this entry, we look at more wonders among birds. Eggs come in a variety of sizes and shapes, as shown in a rapid-fire series in the Illustra film. In an “Egg Mythbuster” piece, Phys.org explains why some eggs are pear-shaped. […]

Early Fossil Bird Feathers Were Modern and Colorful

The predicted gradual sequence from fuzz to flight remains mythical, as modern feathers show up too early for Darwin's comfort.

Media Go Nuts Over Alleged Tyrannosaur Missing Link

From a few bone fragments and lots of imagination, reporters lit the fireworks and marching bands to spin stories for Darwin.

Friday Funnies: Evo-Comics

Not every Darwinian explanation is useless. Some of them can function as entertainment.

Grebe Left Imaginary Dinosaur Feathers in Amber

“Dinosaur feathers” are all over the news again, thanks to a paper in Science revealing feathers in amber found in Canada. But whose feathers are they? Inferences from other sources, not from the amber, were brought into the interpretation, even though the discoverers admitted, “There is currently no way to refer the feathers in amber with certainty to either birds or the rare small theropods from the area.” And modern-looking feathers of diving birds like grebes were also found in the same amber, leading to numerous questions about what can rightly be inferred from the fossils themselves. No matter; most of the media loved the evolutionary implications and trotted out their headlines that feather evolution from dinosaur to bird has been proven.