July 31, 2009 If you could see inside a dying star — and if your eyes were tuned to perceive that ephemeral property of the universe called entropy — this might be what you would see. This computer simulation shows how disorder, aka entropy, spreads through a supernova.
July 31, 2009 You Are Here delves into the physiology and folklore of wayfinding. Alternating between scientific experiments and real-world examples, psychologist Colin Ellard bares the brain's algorithms for finding the body's location on the planet.
July 31, 2009 Creating realistic and accurate museum exhibitions requires close collaboration between artists and scientists. Ira Flatow talks with exhibit designers about what is involved in recreating animals and environments that disappeared long ago.
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July 31, 2009 Grad students from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography will visit the "Great Pacific Garbage Patch," where plastics and other refuse collect. Chief scientist Miriam Goldstein outlines what the researchers hope to learn about the material dumped in the ocean.
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July 31, 2009 Tech columnist Randy Stross discusses whether users really own the digital books and music they purchase, or merely rent them. Computer scientist Hank Levy talks about privacy software that causes e-mails and documents on remote servers to self-destruct after eight hours.
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July 31, 2009 A new report in the journal Science, crediting good management, says some over-fished ecosystems are improving and fish numbers are up. Marine biologist Boris Worm — who in 2006 warned that without action many fish populations could be gone by 2048 — describes the study's findings.
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A commercial fishing boat pulls in its net near Seattle. Strict federal fishing laws have cut back significantly on overfishing in the United States.
July 30, 2009 In many areas, fishermen are pulling fish out of the seas faster than the populations can withstand, and some fisheries are heading toward collapse. But a major new study shows that all fisheries aren't doomed. In fact, some are on the mend.
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Scientists use laser fluorescent technology and squirts of dye to test how this jellyfish moves ocean water.
K. Katija & J. Dabiri/California Institute of Technology
July 30, 2009 Researchers believe that some small marine creatures may help curb global climate change. A new study suggests that jellyfish and creatures like them play an important role in circulating ocean waters, mixing nutrients, and helping to reduce CO2 levels in the atmosphere.
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Veterinarian Tony Mudakikwa directs Amandine Eriksen and Shannon McFarlin as they excavate the skeleton of a gorilla.
July 30, 2009 We started the morning with two infant burial sites. Life can be rough for little gorillas. For one thing, infanticide is common, just as it is among many primate species.
July 29, 2009 It's time for another installment in our occasional series Wild Sounds — short stories that take you to remote parts of the world to hear the sounds of rare animals. Biologist Andy Bass of Cornell University explains what makes the plainfin midshipman fish hum.
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Researcher Amandine Eriksen arranges the hand bones of a mountain gorilla skeleton.
Erin Marie Williams
July 29, 2009 Where graduate student Erin Marie Williams sees a lump on a bone, her senior colleagues see a broken wrist that healed with time. That lump tells the story of a gorilla that walked with a slight limp on the right side and put most of its weight on the other arm.
July 28, 2009 In the Arctic, a change in the weather could mean starvation for herds of musk oxen and other grazing animals. Scientists who study the far north planet have documented "rain-on-snow" events. Rain falls onto the snowpack and freezes into a hard sheet of ice, preventing some wildlife from getting to the plants trapped below.
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July 28, 2009 Paleontology student Erin Marie Williams ventures into Rwanda, where she works on a research team exhuming gorilla bones.
July 27, 2009 No mountain gorilla is ordinary, but those found in northwest Rwanda are especially fascinating. They are the gorillas studied by legendary primatologist Dian Fossey — the "gorillas in the mist." Now, researchers are exhuming the descendants of those gorillas, in the search of clues to primate evolution. Researcher Erin Marie Williams is part of that team, and has sent dispatches from the field.
July 27, 2009 Congress and FDA officials agree that food distributed in the United States needs to be monitored more closely. In a global economy, the effects of contaminated food can quickly spread far and wide.
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