- 2011 Nebula Award Winners
- Song of Bullfrogs, Cry of Geese »
It's a lovely and sad story, ultimately about living when those you love are dying. Be sure to read the interview with author Nicola Griffith as well.
- April 17 Cover of Developmental Cell [see image above]
The journal Developmental Cell decided to illustrate it's April 17th issue with what looks like a clip from an action-packed science fiction movie. What it illustrates:
"On the cover: The image shows AP-1A adaptor proteins working in the trans-Golgi network to coordinate clathrin-dependent basolateral sorting of cargo proteins. For more information, see Gravotta et al., pp. 811–823. The illustration was produced by HyukJae Henry Yoo and TianXu Tim Guo of Pratt Institute."
- Ridley Scott talks Prometheus with Geoff Boucher - Hero Complex
On +Nerdist's +YouTube channel's Hero Complex show: The Show Los Angeles Times reporter Geoff Boucher talks to Ridley Scott, the director of Blade Runner, Alien and the upcoming Prometheus. Ridley reveals the role storyboarding plays in his films, what it was like returning to the Alien franchise and how he may return to the Bladerunner franchise in the future.
- Anthill: a six-legged adventure from science to fiction »
Biologist EO Wilson's novel Anthill lets you get inside the mind (or "mind") of ants:
"The central section is an extraordinary act of what you might call species empathy, of the biologist imagining exactly what it is like to be an ant. Wilson invokes the poet Homer in his introduction, suggesting that ant "histories are epics that unfold on picnic grounds", in which "ants are a metaphor for us, and we for them." By concentrating on the struggles of the ant colony in this way, he makes the ecosystem virtually a character in the book, to which the ants give body and life."
- The Strange Creatures that Cronenberg's Total Recall Would Have Included »
Ganzi-bulls and sandsubs: what Total Recall could have looked like.
- The ‘Hunger Games’ Mockingjay: Fiction, for Now »Could people currently engineer a Hunger Games-style mockingjay in real life?
Biologist and author Joan Slonczewski says: "The tools needed to modify organisms are already widely dispersed in industry and beyond. “Now anybody can do a start-up,” she said."
- Auto-Tuned Opening Lines - The Day of the Triffids... »
Some Saturday music weirdness for you Day of the Triffids fans.
- Dinosaur Farts May Have Warmed Prehistoric Earth »
This conclusion may be a bit overstated, but I love the headline.
- Science In My Fiction » Blog Archive » Our Epic Prehistory »
At Science in My Fiction +Ryan Anderson argues that setting stories in pseudo-medieval Europe with elves and orcs isn't necessarily as interesting as the real period when there really were several species of humans living together.
"In most fantasy settings, there are several intelligent species coexisting in the same world, each with a distinctive culture and appearance. In our modern world of course, there are humans of cultures and appearances that vary beyond anything seen in most fantasy, but there are no other similarly advanced intelligent species for us to interact with. This was not always the case. In the course of human evolution, we coexisted with several other species of human, including Neanderthals, Homo floresiensis, and the recently discovered Denisova hominin."
- The Effects of Music on the Brain
Sounds like your brain - or at least Oliver Sack's brain - has a "mind" of its own.
More seriously, what this seems to show that what we mean when we say we "like" something is complicated and goes beyond whether what we believe to be our brain's emotion centers are active.
For more about music and the brain, I recommend Oliver Sack's book Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain
- Rudolph Thauer: Deep Chemistry
Aliens among us? Deep see microorganisms live off methane.
- Robots that Reveal the Inner Workings of Brain Cells
The method is 30 years old, but apparently robots do it better: "The researchers have shown that a robotic arm guided by a cell-detecting computer algorithm can identify and record from neurons in the living mouse brain with better accuracy and speed than a human experimenter"
- Meat-eating plant digests insects using ants | Not Exactly Rocket Science | Discover Magazine »
Ant poop gives insect-eating plants a boost
- CultureLab: The biochemistry of love and empathy »
Oxytocin is the molecule that seems to be involved in empathy. I'm not sure it's fair to say it's involved in "morality", unless you define what is "moral" very specifically to mean "caring", and exclude religion-based "morality" that is based on rules rather than empathy.
- What would life be like if pterosaurs were alive today? »
Could you ride a pterosaur to work? Looks like you could - much better than sitting in rush hour traffic!
- Challenges for Future Generations: space, brain preservation and more! »
+David Brin has some suggestions for brain preservation that would be decorative, to say the least.
- Touché: Enhancing Touch Interaction on Humans, Screens, Liquids, and Everyday Objects
This is very cool. One step towards the sort of hands-in-the-water interface the Cylons used on their ship.
- Hidden Epidemic: Tapeworms Living Inside People's Brains | Infectious Diseases | DISCOVER Magazine »
Not for the squeamish! Tapeworms can take up residence in the human brain causing epilepsy, paralysis and other serious problems. The problem is when people ingest tapeworm eggs shed by an infected person. Not surprisingly this happens most frequently in parts of the world where people don't have access to source of clean water.
- Measuring transient X-rays with lobster eyes
NASA scientists are developing X-ray monitor technology based on the structure of lobster eyes.
- Paralysed woman moves robot with her mind - by Nature Video
This is amazing! A paralyzed woman was able to move a robot with her mind. In this case to hand her a drink. (It's hard to imagine not being able to do mundane things like feed yourself.)
- Eureka! When a Blow to the Head Creates a Sudden Genius »
Recent studies have shown that after some brain injuries rewiring unlocks hidden skills. The cool thing is that the effect can be temporarily reproduced without the brain damage by using a device called the "Medtronic Mag Pro". Sounds like science fiction!
- Why Can't We See Evidence of Alien Life?
Why do we seem to be alone in the universe? An animated look at the Fermi Paradox.
- We Must Explore
From the Young Scientists for Planetary Exploration and +Andrew Chaikin : A video showing our fantastic solar system and protesting the large cuts in funds for planetary exploration in NASA's budget.
- More info:http://www.facebook.com/groups/232052633560745/