September 2010 Archives
A few extremely wealthy people have already had the opportunity to travel into space.. running them as much as $18 million dollars per person. Boeing is planning to start a space-traveling business as early as 2015. These trips would being at Cape Canaveral Florida and go to the International Space Station in a capsule that would be capable of taking 7 passengers onboard. There has been talk of creating a government-owned rocket to take astronauts to the moon and other planets..instead Obama is more interested in starting the tourist business and then pay for these astronauts to have a seat on these rockets. Do you guys think that this is a logical business to start considering we are just coming out of a recession?
After watching an episode from one of my favorite shows, Castle, I became quite annoyed at something the forensics specialist had said. The woman, who is trained to understand the human body AS WELL as a doctor, made a comment to the lead to detective to stop worrying so much or she'd get an ulcer. This bothered me- though the discovery of H.pylori was over a decade ago and there are very few people with ulcers anymore, Americans and the general public of the world are still operating under the archaic assumption that ulcers are caused by stress.
However, our lack of understanding is not at the fault of the media, but perhaps by the sheer ignorance of our country to read the news. After undergoing some research, I discovered that the majority of news sites are actually verifying the existance of H. pylori AND saying that this cures the ulcers. Take this article, written by the US CDC in 2006, which states that there is a cure for ulcers and that H. pylori is the cause of them. Also, take this link to the WebMd site, which outlines the history of ulcers, including that is was mistakenly believed to be caused by stress and that research in the 1980s proved otherwise. There are even studies being tested that state that baby broccoli may prevent the development of H.pylori (though, this article being from fox news with little to no evidence of studies, should be scrutinized before take as valid). Either way, the media, as far as news sources are concerned, are not spreading lies about H.pylori causing ulcers.
But why do most Americans still believe that stress causes stomach ulcers (I must admit that I did not know the truth until this class)?
Ick, right? My experiences with salt water are mostly confined to accidental swallows at the beach after a particularly pesky wave. But according to a randomized study published in The American Journal of Preventive Medicine in 2005 conducted by the Mayo Clinic, the people that were told to gargle with salt water thrice per day had almost a 40% decrease in upper respiratory tract infections compared with those whom did not gargle at all.
Gargling with salt water is also said to help against sore throats and congestion. So this is what you need to do...according to the Mayo Clinic, "dissolve half a teaspoon of salt in a full glass of warm water and gargle the solution for a few seconds before spitting it out."
It may be icky, but not as icky as a cold! Try it out.
It has been raining since all day, since the moment I woke up(11pm) and now it's 2pm. But at least I'm not in pain.
When I searched on the Internet about life and universe, I found this news on Sky& Telescope.com. It reports that the first potentially habitable planet was announced.
What's special about this planet is that it is neither too hot nor too cold, liquid water may exsit on this planet.
Sience Magazine also reported this discovery. (Astronomers Find Most Earth-like Planet to Date)
"Astronomers may have found the most Earth-like alien planet to date, and it's located only a short distance away, cosmically speaking. The team says that the planet's proximity to its sun, coupled with the ease with which it was detected, suggests that the galaxy could be teeming with habitable worlds."
The planets astronomers found before are either too close to their sun or too far. Some are to large to support life because they lack of solid surface. But this one is different.
"Gliese 581g is the sixth world discovered around its sun--and the fourth most distant. Yet its orbit brings it closer to its parent star than Mercury is to our sun. Still, it's squarely within the habitable zone, because the planet's star, which is a type known as a red dwarf, contains only about 30% of the sun's mass and shines with only about 1% of its brightness."
This discovery is a big breakthrough. Since this planet is so habitable, I can't help wondering is there life like human existing on it.
Gliese 581 is a family of planets that orbit around a red dwarf star. Planet G, also referenced as Gliese 581g, is a newly discovered planet that holds a lot of similarities to ours. The planet is three times the size of Earth, orbits the system's sun, has a stable atmosphere and gravity, and is just far enough from the star that it has liquid water. Because of the pools of water, it's believed that there could be life there.
What I thought was really interesting about this planet, was that it doesn't have a rotation like Earth. Instead, it is locked to its position to the sun in the same way that the moon is locked to the Earth. We only see one side of the moon. Half of this planet gets sun all of the time, and the other half is in darkness all of the time.
The scientists aren't actually sure if there is life there or not yet. I think it will be really interesting when they do find out. Usually, when I think of life, I immediately think of what we have on our planet. But most of the complex life forms I think of (humans, animals, plants etc.) see the day and night cycle. It will be very exciting to see if there is life on this planet, and if there is, what living in constant daylight or constant darkness. The only kind of creatures I can think of that might be comparable would be the fish that live so deep in the ocean, that they are in constant darkness.
Some of which are adorable, like the Dumbo Octopus pictured below. And some are kind of terrifying (but fascinating!), like the creatures featured on this list titled 10 Horrible Deep Sea Creatures.
If you had to come up with something comparable that could possibly exist on this earth-planet with constant day/night, what would it be?
What a great discussion in Tuesday's class about
extraterrestrial life. The topic seems to be interesting to a lot of
people in the class. However, I'm going be blogging about something
different since everyone seems to be on the ET bandwagon after Tuesday
I read about the deadliest animals somewhere on the internet a week ago and I found it interesting, especially number 1. A simple search showed that most authors mostly agreed on this top 10 list. I'll be referring to the one I found on greenpacks.org because it seems pretty reliable. Here is the list:
10. Poison dart frog
-I have never heard of this kind of frog before, but it's pretty hard to imagine and frog killing ten men when you touch its skin.
9. Cape buffalo
8. Polar bear
-This saddens me the most. Polar bears are my favorite animal and they're endangered. It never seems these cuddly bears would hurt humans, but apparently they hurt tourists. Other kinds of bears would make more sense to me.
7. The elephant
-This makes sense, they are huge! They don't seem aggressive though.
6. African Lion
5. Great White Shark
-Jaws gave me nightmares. Most people would understand sharks in the top 5 deadliest animals to humans. The great white racks up 30-100 kills per year.
4. Austrialian Box Jellyfish
-Really? Jellyfish? A couple years ago I was surrounded by them in the water in Ocean City, MD. No one seemed to care. Each tentacle can kill up to 60 humans, but I guess this is only on the Australian coast.
3. Australian saltwater crocodile
2. Asian Cobra
-Snakes? Why'd it have to be snakes?
-I wasn't expecting these guys to be the deadliest. I get bites all of the time during the summer. The reality is, they can kill millions of people each year spreading malaria and other diseases.
What do you guys think?
What is "intuition"? In the last two classes, Andrew presented us with specific medical cases when doctors went with intuition or the common treatment option, which in the end, turned out to be more harmful than good for the patients involved. Of course this was only discovered after additional scientific research had been done to quantitatively prove that the doctors' intuition and/or common practice had been wrong. As Andrew said, "Intuition is a very poor guide to the world."
So this got me thinking about what intuition is exactly and also wondering about whether or not it has a role to play in science. If you've ever heard of Malcolm Gladwell or read his book Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking, you'll be familiar with his idea of the adaptive unconscious. I don't know if I really buy it, but it's an interesting idea, and he does provide examples to support it.
My question now is what role does intuition (or the adaptive
unconscious) play in science? Do
researchers ever use intuition (or adaptive unconscious) to make those leaps
between what they know already and what is actually happening? And then use that idea to design additional
experiments to provide the concrete proof they require? Could we say that Barry Marshall acted on his
intuition (supported by scientific data as well, of course) when he decided to
drink the bacteria? Perhaps this space
between science and intuition is related to what Alex was referring to in his
posts about interdisciplinarity and overturning objective-only science?
Are you inclined to operate more on intuition than facts? Or vice versa? Are scientific types predisposed to one camp or the other? How about the general public? Is that where things get so muddled when we're looking at these scientific issues as presented in the popular press? For example, even when faced with a story that explicitly states "Obesity can be caught as easily as a common cold...", my intuition tells me that 's not very likely to be the cause of the weight problems we see here in America. What do you think?
In class we have been discussing placebos, vaccines, and other kinds of medical treatments. After doing a little research, I found that a large amount of medicinal information comes from research done in the natural environment. In fact, rainforests are a very large contributor to medical research. I found a video that follows medical researchers as they search to find a "toxic frog" that is believed to carry poisonous goo that could be be used to cure a range of diseases. This toxic frog is one of many amphibious creatures found in rainforests worldwide that carry valuable information for new developments in the field of medicine. The problem is that the amount of people dedicated to finding these animals is dwindling every day. It's as if the rainforest is a pharmacy just waiting to be opened. Perhaps if there was a movement to accomplish this rainforest mission; we could find the cure to many diseases taking lives more and more everyday.
Toxic Frog Video
I thought that this was humorous, but relevant to our class in the sense that it pokes fun at what some of us are reading and using to support our blog posts. It's just for fun, of course!
After watching the video in today's class about the obesity article I have a very good feeling still that there is no excuse in regards to why people are obese. It really seems like if the virus was proven to make kids turn obese then it would be an extra excuse for them to feel content with their obesity. I honestly feel that it is necessary for kids to exercise and diet correctly on a daily basis in order to stray from obesity. This article here that I researched was pretty interesting in how the AD-36 cold virus is a possible cause of obesity. It is still an ongoing experiment for scientists but it seems that the most confusing part quoted here is that "it is not known how often or under what circumstances AD-36 infects, why the virus affects people differently and whether weight gain is the result of an active infection or a lasting change in a person's metabolism." This is still an interesting article that I would like to hear more about in the near future if more information has been figured out.
Dr. Strangelove Is a film about the cold war, but the tittle character is a scientist. A former nazi, Dr. Strangelove is the best weapons expert in the country, and he gives the president crucial information regarding the Soviet "Doomsday Device".
Many consider Rush as "The father of American Psychiatry", as he published the first textbook on the subject in America. He was far ahead of his time in treating patients with mental illness. Rush successfully campaigned for a separate mental ward in hospitals after seeing the terrible conditions mental patients had previously lived in. He was however incorrect in his diagnosis and treatment of mental patients. He believed the cause of mental illness was improper blood circulation to the brain, thus he tried to cure those diseases by improving blood flow.
Rush is also credited with pioneering occupational therapy as he noticed that mental patients who were able to perform jobs scrubbing, cleaning, gardening etc were better off than being institutionalized in a hospital.
Rush also developed a therapeutic cure to addiction. At the time, drunkenness was viewed as a sin, and a choice by the drinker. He proposed that alcoholism was a medical disease, that the drinker could not control themselves and was indeed addicted. To cure alcoholics, he suggested that they be weaned off the substance with less and less potent substances.
Rush is obviously more well known for his medical contributions (and mistakes) than his role as a founding father. While he was an active member of the sons of liberty and an influence on the formation of American Government, other founding fathers such as Thomas Jefferson and John Adams overshadow his role.
Maybe its because history is interesting to me, but I think its really cool to know that I'm related to such an influential person. Rush was not only historically significant, But scientifically as well.
The website below provides other interesting facts so you should all take a look!
|they are given antibiotics against diseases. Intensive farming methods are used to grow chicken quickly and most of the time the animals are kept indoors. |
Just these conditions alone show a lot about the difference between both types of foods. If you check out the link, you will see many more differences between the two. So next time you are at an organic farm, supermarket, or see organic products maybe you will realize why there is such a difference in price.
Ever heard of the old adage, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it"?
So if our current model of a fan with blades is perfect how it is, then why should anyone feel the need to recreate it? Apparently Sir James Dyson, the creator of the notoriously overpriced Dyson Ball Vacuum, doesn't think it is as "perfect" as it may seem.
In the video below, Dyson explains how is new model of the fan works and the disadvantages our currnet model brings:
Basically, the fan takes in a smaller amount of air through the vent at the bottom which is in turn magnified as it is shot through the circular part of the contraption.
Now while the design is sleek, the new mode of technology fascinating and the absence of blades makes it less dangerous to the public, is the bladeless fan really worth buying? Especially at its current sale price of $300?
What do you think?
Sitting on my desk is a cute little square container. It's orange, mixed with blue beads and the scent is nectarine mint. I brought this hand sanitzer with me in case I ever run into a pinch with washing my hands, but I don't use it that often. I do, though, know people who use hand sanitizer religiously. My 7th grade teacher was completely anal about it and I don't think I've ever used the stuff more than I did in that class. With the risk of so many flu bugs and diseases many schools recommend that students bring their own hand sanitzer to school with them. I know when I was in high School we were all sent home with papers telling us to carry it around with us. But we all know how to use hand sanitzer, and we also know not to eat/drink it. What about little kids, though? My 4 year old cousin was sent home from pre-school with a note telling her to bring some with her. When Ava (my cousin) sees my little orange bottle, she thinks it's pretty. But what she doesn't know is that it's extremely dangerous and hazardous to her and everyones health. Just in my small 1 oz. bottle alone it contains 68% alcohol. Hand sanitizers present alcohol is huge doses, way more than liquor or any other kind of alcoholic beverage. If a little kid ingests this stuff they could get brain damage. Yeah, it's THAT powerful. Did you also know that you can get ADDICTED to the stuff? Some people use is so often that it causes extremely dry skin and causes them to crack and get infections. Ironic, because aren't we trying to prevent infections and germs by using sanitizers?
Don't get me wrong - there are many benefits to hand sanitizers that are irrefutable. And in a pinch, they are a really great thing to have. But everyone should know the danger and bad involved with grabbing the cute little bottle instead of using old fashion soap & water.
In this video from our TV station (WPSU), Barry Marshall conventionally describes his experience as a researcher and discovering the bacteria. It is very interesting!
For all the animal lovers out there-
Looking in the science section of the NY Times online, I was fascinated by this article. The only interaction I've ever had with dolphins was at Hershey Park, Sea World, and Discovery Cove, but I find it very interesting to see the research that they are doing on animal cognition. In this interview with a dolphin researcher, she explains how she interacts with dolphins and how they are researching to find out how they think. It raises a good question: are there animals out there that have the extensive cognitions we have?
Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria become uneffected by particular antibiotics. This is a known and growing issue because, over time, bacteria are able to evolve and adapt in order to surive. If these bacteria are able to do this so well, then how will we ever be able to control it, especially in the case of a superbacteria that could become resistant to all that we had to fend it off.
I think this is an interesting idea in the case of 99.9% bacteria free products. we use these products all the time in form of soaps, sprays, etc. If 99.9% is destroyed then what happened to the remaining .1%? Wouldnt this already be the strongest bacteria out of the group? so every time we use these products the .1%, the strongest bacteria, are left over. Couldnt this eventually end up in the developing of a super bacteria in the future? how bad could it get? The possibilty seems really endless because they will always adapt to survive, theres no stopping that. Lets just hope bacteria doesnt evolve to the point where we cant stop it. How ironic would that be, the most advanced creature wiped out by the simplest form of life.
I was on the phone with a friend today and she was talking about how her dog had accidently eaten a couple miniture Twix Bars. She was freaking out and wondering what to do. I decided to look online and found some interestind data.
The truth is that chocolate contains theobromine which in large amounts is toxic to dogs. On the positive side, in order for chocolate to have serious effects on dogs, they must consume a sufficent amount of it. In other words, if your dog scarfs down a couple of M & M's... he or she is going to be alright. Also, one must consider specific factors such as animal size, chocolate concentration, and animal sensitivity. One article states that clinical signs that your dog may be in trouble include "hyper excitability, hyper irritability, increased heart rate, restlessness, increased urination, muscle tremors, vomiting and diarrhea."
If anyone wants to check out specific statistics on the types of chocolate and harmful amounts dogs may induce the website i found is..
Just thought this was interesting! Enjoy and have a great weekend everybody!:)
Since we have been getting blogs on foods that can be detrimental to your health, I chose to do the opposite. Last summer my dad was telling me one day about this "Super Food" thing that he heard on some radio show. These five so called "super foods" were selected as the five best foods to help you lead a longer and healthier life. I do not remember the exact five that they said but they were along the lines of tomatoes, nuts, blueberries, and 2 others. Since I was failing to recall the other 2 I did some research. So here are some everyday foods that supposedly help us lead a longer and healthier life:
-Blueberries: strengthen our short term memory
-Pomegranate- Juice has one of the highest amounts of antioxidants in a fruit juice.
-Salmon- For a healthy heart. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish high in fat (such as salmon) at least 2 times a week.
-Dark Green Vegetables- High in fiber. American Heart Association recommends at least 4 servings a day.
-Tomatoes- Help prevent certain types of cancer. Tomatoes contain the antioxidant lycopene, which helps reduce some types of cancer and heart disease. It is especially successful in preventing prostate cancer in men. A recent study at Harvard with more than 40,000 health professionals "found that men who ate more than 10 servings of tomato-based foods daily (like cooked tomatoes and tomato sauce) had a 35 percent lower risk of developing prostate cancer than those who ate the least amount of these foods. The benefits of tomatoes were more pronounced in men with advanced stages of prostate cancer."
-Yogurt- Strengthens your immune system and heart
Today in class, you predicted a sift in medicine from treatment of symptoms to treatment of actual causes at some point in te near future. Wat makes you believe tis exactly, (since Im sure te idea isnt a really new one)? Do you believe in te possibility of any form of resistance aainst tis from dru companies, considerin its muc more profitable to treat symptoms wile te actual cause keeps creatin tem (for obvious reasons)? Obviously Im sure most people in tat business primarily want to elp people,but is it possible for a few corrupt individuals to do sometin like tat? if anyone else wants to discuss, discuss away.
(Sorry once more)
I also started thinking a little bit about the FDA and prescription drug regulation and if I'm confident in the system as it exists. I realize a company can't know all of the possible side effects to a particular drug until it's on the market and widely used, so they have more data from which to draw conclusions, but there's a part of me that is concerned about the competing interests between making money and admitting when your particular blockbuster drug may have some serious problems.
I was thinking about all of this and happened to see a New York Times headline on my iGoogle page - "Regulators Impose Tight Restrictions on Diabetes Drug" and proceeded to read the story of how the FDA and European regulators made a joint announcement today about restrictions for Avandia, the number one diabetes treatment drug. You can read the story for yourself, and you may want to check the New England Journal of Medicine piece that explains what has happened with this particular drug. It has been on the market since 1999.
What does all of this mean for you and me? We have so much access to information about medical conditions, potential treatments, and possible side effects of those treatments, but has it changed the doctor-patient relationship at all? Would you question your doctor if he/she prescribed a medication for you, or would you just pop on over to the pharmacy, get the prescription filled, and hope it had the desired effect? Are you on the evidence-based side of the fence or the experience-based side?
in todays current society it is extremely hard to get medicine approved by the FDA. However its easier in europe where theres less of a beurocractic process. Is this good because it prevents harmful drugs going onto the market like thalidomide, or its it bad because, risky, but potentially life saving drugs are being stalled and prevented from helping people. heres an interesting article;http://www.heartland.org/healthpolicy-news.org/article/28443/FDAs_Regulatory_Approval_Regime_Questioned.html
There are many theories on how life began on earth. I found an article which talks about the theory of "abiogenesis" or "organic soup". This theory basically means that according to the bible, God gave the earth the power to create life and at the beginning of time, the earth had special powers in order to create this life. This theory allows those who believe in God and are of the Christian faith to also believe that God did not directly create humans, and therefore, evolution is a possibility. Even though the theory of "abiogenesis" has been disproven and failed in supplying evidence, many scientists still believe that this could be how life began on earth...I have never heard of this theory until reading this article and was curious to see if anyone had and what your thoughts on it are?
I don't know about you, but Little Debbie Swiss Rolls are one of my FAVORITE snack foods. However, I didn't know, until recently, that these snack cakes that taste so good at the time, may cause long-term affects, aside from weight problems and diabetes. Studies have recently been addressing the fact that preservatives and chemical additives found in certain foods can cause serious health problems, including cancer. Check out this article and look at all of the foods that they list as having these "bad" additives-- I know that I eat something on each page on a regualar basis... Do you buy into these preliminary investigations? Would you stop eating Doritos if you thought that they would cause cancer?
So I know I am not the only person who has heard this myth, but I have always been under the impression that a penny dropped from the Empire State Building would have enough power to kill someone! When my aunt first told me this, not only was I scared walking around the perimeter of the Empire State Building, but I was a vigilante against anyone dropping things off of tall buildings. However, thanks to the physics in this article about science myths, it's given me reason to doubt my prior knowledge. What are you thinking?
There are other very impressive photos here. Things were so much better than Haiti (no one died in Christchurch) because New Zealand has well developed civil emergency planning, relatively low population density and proper building codes which are enforced - in other words, national wealth.
The first time I met my new doctor, he gave me the routine questions about my daily habits. He asked me how many cigarettes I smoked and how many alcoholic drinks I consumed in a day. These seemed like important answers to have on file, so I did not think twice about his inquiry. But what stood out was his third question - "How many cups of coffee do you drink a day?". Because I was sitting in his office with a cup of coffee...I thought maybe this was some sort of joke. Let me just say - he was not kidding. Apparently my coffee habits were equivalent to the habits of smokers and drinkers? I didn't even know the three were in the same category. So point of this article - could it potentially be discovered that coffee is bad for you, like science did with cigarettes?
First I looked up research from the Association for Science and Information on Coffee (ASIC). Yes this does exist. And they conducted some studies on mice to test their theory that coffee and/or caffeine is helpful for preventing and/or treating Alzheimer's Disease. What they found was that the mice they started giving caffeine to at young adulthood showed more protection against memory impairment in their older age. They also notice that the older mice showed more memory restoration once they began to treat them with the caffeine water! That is amazing, because if that is the case it could potentially be a great help for humans with Alzheimer's Disease. (I have heard this hypotheses being thrown around before, but never read anything about an experient with positive results.)
And I also checked out the flip side for coffee - the negatives. A natural health doctor stressed the point that caffeine IS technically a drug, and with drugs, the more your body gets used to - the more you'll have to intake to continue to get the same effects.Caffeine prevents the chemical "adenosine" from communicating to your brain to relax. And another interesting point he makes isn't about the caffeine in it, but the fact that 70% of the world's coffee beans could potentially be contaminated with pesticides and chemicals. (So does this mean that maybe the negative affects of coffee don't come from caffeine intake, but an environmental element instead?).
Here are some listed positives of coffee:
-antioxidants, may reduce the risk of
Parkinson's disease, may protect against type-2 diabetes, increases mental attention
And the negatives:
-may be linked to heart disease, disturbs the functioning of blood vessels, osteoporosis, heartburn
So I still wonder, is it a relevant piece of information for my doctor to know? It still seems that there are a lot of "maybes" and not even hard scientific evidence to confirm this fact like was the case with cigarettes and their effects on health.
I'm sure everybody is excited about the return of all their favorite TV shows, I know I am! In fact, last night I was watching the season premiere of one of my favorite underrated TV shows, Castle (on ABC), and stumbled across something we'd just been discussing in class...ulcers.
In the scene, one of the characters, Lanie, says to the lead detective, Kate Beckett, "I heard you made an interesting arrest today, want to talk about it?." Becket replies with a curt, "No". Lanie continues: "Okay, keep hold all that in, you're gonna get an ulcer."
This made me laugh. After all, we just finished discussing how bacteria is actually the cause of these ulcers, not stress or other outside situations. Before this class, I would've made the same comment as Lanie did. However, after hearing Dr. Marshall speak, I know better! Apparently, ABC does not :)
In Riverside, California a utility company stumbled upon a heap of animal fossils dating back to 1.4 million years ago!! Researchers discovered nearly "1,500 bone fragments including a giant cat that was the ancestor of the saber-toothed tiger, ground sloths the size of a modern-day grizzly bear, two types of camels and more than 1,200 bones from small rodents." The fossils exemplifying 35 new species will be on display at Western Science Center. Scientists say that is is extremely rare to find so many different bones of different species in one area. They believe that so many skeletons may be so well preserved "because a muddy lake bed or marsh may have trapped animals that came to drink there. Some animals who became stuck may have fallen prey to others, while some died because they were unable to free themselves." This is a huge find for scientists and may help fill in gaps as to what was going on in the area during this time period!
If anyone is interested in reading the aritcle the website is...
Samantha Narick Ebrey
I wanted to do an entry of what I thought of the class for the first blog period. I will also try to do this at the end of each blog period in order to keep a personal track of how I feel the class is as a whole.
I feel that the class throughout this first blog period is very interesting. I really love the way it is being taught and how we are also being graded on digital expression. I have never had a class yet that has required me to posts blogs online periodically. I especially like that this innovation is dealing with science. Another thing that is new to me is texting to a website to post different answers that professor Read asks. Hopefully throughout the rest of the semester there will be more intersting things to come regarding how this class is taught. I am really enjoying it so far, and I am excited to see what will happen in the future.
As I sat and listened to Dr. Read explain to the class what classified scientists as "odd" or "geeky", I couldn't help but create a mental comparison between scientists and those of other professions.
Of course, the only subject I can speak for is English. As an aspiring writer and English major, I can relate to some of what Dr. Read was saying about skepticism. Although it maynot seem like it at first glance, writers and other lovers of literature are trained to search for answers in the pieces they read. Whether poetry, novels, or plays, we raise questions about the characters, the motives and the meaning of the different works just like scientists do with the work they're interested in.
In order to answer these questions, we gather evidence from the text just like scientists do with data and like scientists,we draw conclusions that are never definite, despite the evidence, and always open to interpretation.
Don't get me wrong, there are key differences between the two subjects, but I just found this to be an interesting relation between the two.
Could it be this way with other studies as well? Seeing as how English and science seem to be nearly polar opposites, I wouldn't doubt it.
And if being passionate about something you love to do is odd and geeky, then I'm one proud English Geek.
Last year my cousin came home from school with lice. She got it from her best friends, who got it from her brother, who got it from his cousin that got it from daycare, and it goes on and on.
A common misconception that a lot of people have is that you have headlice it means that you are dirty. This actually isn't true. Lice LOVE clean hair because it is easier for them to move around the scalp. They usually lay their nits (eggs) usually along the hairline behind the ears as well as the hairline close to the back of the neck, and they can lay up to 12 eggs in ONE DAY.
Watch this video clip about lice. It's actually pretty interesting
According to the Headlice Hotline, lice comes from anywhere and from anyone and always just from crawling onto your hair. Think about it: sharing brushes, sharing hats, sharing clothes, sharing hairties etc What about when we buy or try on clothes? What if someone who had lice and didn't know went to a store and started trying on clothes. If they had lice and one of their hairstrands stayed on the shirt and you then later try on the shirt your are easily exposed and capable of getting lice as well. So how many of us are going to be more careful when we try on clothes at department stores? I know I will.
How and why might anti-intellectualism and intelligent design be connected? This is a question I hope to investigate full-on in the coming weeks. In the meantime, what are your own opinions and observations? How do you feel about anti-intellectualism as a university student? When (if ever) have you experienced this kind of mistrust?
I think all of us at one point in our lives had chickenpox. When I first got them the first reaction I had was to scratch those spots as much as I could regardless of my parents telling me that the consequence of my action would lead to more rashes, and more itching from the scratching. While looking online I found an article in Times Magazine that explains why people decide to scratch those parts of the body that starts to itch. The article mentions that a study published in the science journal Nature Neuroscience, suggest that the mechanism by which scratching relieves an itch takes place not along the nerve fibers of itchy skin but deep within the central nervous system -- specifically in the tract (STT) neurons in the spinal cord, which transmit information about pain, temperature and touch to the brain. In previous studies scientist have discovered that have STT neurons can be activated with the application of an itch-producing chemical like histamine and that the neurons send that itch sensation to the brain. Drug companies are trying to engineer drugs to alleviate persistent itch which would produce the relief from itching caused by scratching but without the damage caused by sustained scratching. Does anyone know of a good method to alleviate an itch that doesn't include scratching?
Victor Von Frankenstein.
Anyways, over time, Scientists have gotten kind of a bad wrap. Whether it be for putting lipstick on monkeys or being disturbingly cavalier with their use of beakers, scientists work hard every day to better understand the world around us, and all we do is scoff and deride them.
It is, indeed, a thankless job. But if you took the thanklessness, and added an element of derogatory government propaganda, you'd probably be fairly upset?
Well that's exactly what the British government did.
Now you might indeed call the chemist manufacturers of 'Ivory Wave' scientists. But you probably shouldn't. Not any moreso than you'd call the guy who spends 9 hours in his basement each night without sleeping, than 8 more hours on the corner pedalling methamphetamines a scientist. I guess what the UK is trying to do is invoke kid's fear of scientists to keep them off the streets, and off drugs. Y'know, instead of telling you how many ways it can kill you.
Is this an effective way to describe to potential drug users the lack of integrity involved in making their drugs? Do drug users really care about the manufacturing process to begin with? Or is this just those big burly British crime prevention ministers pushing the scrawny, meek scientists around? idk
Well, during this Sunday's Royals vs Indians game at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, peanuts will be banned in two sections of the park. In partnering with the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network, portions of the game's ticket sales will go to the research organization. According to indians.com-
- Sections 303 and 304 will be designated as the Peanut Aware Zone.
- No peanuts or tree nuts will be allowed in sections 303 and 304 for the September 26 game.
- No peanut vending will be allowed in sections 303 and 304.
- The Peanut Aware Zone (sections 303 and 304 and surrounding areas) will be power washed and cleaned after previous night's game.
However they note that it is simply peanut-controlled, not peanut-free since it would be extremely difficult to monitor an entire ball park over the course of the game. Personally, I love peanuts but if I had a severe peanut allergy I would be pretty thankful that ballparks were starting to do this. Unfortunately, it is the Indians vs the Royals....
According to the article from Science AGOGO, doctors have been using hallucigenic mushrooms as another experimental pain killer for cancer patients. It was said that the mushrooms increased happiness in the patients and made them feel calmer.
I don't really understand how this is legal, probably because it was for medical purposes and the study was done in California. I wonder if there will be the same reaction to the mushrooms as there is to legalizing marijuana. I also wonder what would happen if everything was legal as it was in the early 1900s and all of these drugs were used for beneficial reasons such as treating illnesses. I have watched many documentarys about the history of recreational drugs and they all used to have very helpful effects until people started abusing them. For example, in couples counseling, they used to give couples LSD to improve thier relationships and to help them get along better and it was very successful. Cocaine in syrup form used to be perscibed for everyday illnesses.
100 Cats in an IKEA store
I'm sure this is a very poor example of science, but it's probably also one of the cutest, and most closely resembles my other favorite scientific study, Cool dog mowing lawn
I know animal testing is hotly debated, but I feel like to make progress we need to break some red tape, take a few educated missteps forward, and try out new things. Just a suggestion, but maybe something like a hundred dogs on a slip and slide? I'm just brain storming here. But yeah, I know not a lot of us have maybe the appreciation for science it takes to win a Nobel prize, but there is science for the rest of us. With cats.
It wasn't until she and I watched an episode oh "Bethany Getting Married?" that had us question her complete removal of alcohol from her life. In the episode, Bethany's baby nurse told her that it was okay to drink a beer before breastfeeding because it helps with the milk let down.
From there we went on the internet and did a little of research of our own. In doing so, we were shocked to find out that many doctors believe it is okay to drink in moderation while breastfeeding. They do acknowledge the fact that the alcohol will show up in the breast milk but only a small amount and claims that it won't do any harm to the child.
Though doctors claim that drinking while breastfeeding is okay, I still don't know if I would feel comfortable drinking alcohol knowing my baby would be consuming it as well. What do you think?
I really think technology is growing exponentially. And the day we get to travel as space tourists like we travel on air planes today will come faster than all of us expect. The unfortunate side of this is whenever there is a new frontier, new military implications will be involved to guard this frontier. The days of Star Trek are fast approaching and soon enough we will have a space force.
And after I wrote "The days of Star Trek..." an idea for a great topic came to me!
I know it might sound kind of weird, but I do believe in aliens. To better understand my philosophy you would need to read the entry I posted titled "Is Science the new Religion". In that entry, I based off of my argument by pushing forward for a "chronologically unbiased" perspective. And I would like to again use that same perspective for my argument that aliens are out there.
Lets try to imagine a time when it was extremely difficult to travel great distances and people of different races were not able to come in contact. Everyone you knew and came in contact with were of the same race. You would not even be able to imagine people of other races. You would think all humans were just like you (in terms of race). But then came the technology and hence the ability to travel far and people of different races came in contact. Before the initial tribes then to the regions then to the countries then to the continents that humans came out of, they all thought the world and the diversity of the individuals in it were just that. Just as some of us today may think the universe is filled with just us. That is until "to the universe!"
May our descendants share this view and reach the frontiers of ANOTHER universe...
...or should you?
I didnt want to believe it at first but the deodorant that people use on a day to day basis is in fact polluted with some chemicals and metals. Aluminum is the main "bad guy" in the deodorants and antiperspirants. It wouldnt be that bad in small dosages but the fact that people are absorbing this metal into their body everyday can most certainly bring about some health problems. For women, the aluminum mimics oestrogen which develops the causes of breast cancer. Also, the aluminum can cause side effects on the brain, like alzheimers. Chemicals like propane and butane are also ingredients. This means that with each sweet smell that you inhale, you're also taking in deadly chemicals. There is a way to freshen yourself without applying chemicals to your body. There are plenty of natural deodorants out there that should hopefully, now, seem more appealing.
They look scrumptious don't they? Believe it or not these delectable treats are totally vegan friendly! Now I've been quite skeptical about veganism and vegetarianism but this New York Times article has convinced me it's not all bad. I've had my bad experiences with friends who are vegetarians (I ate a meatball in front of a friend and she cried) and I've given vegan food a chance (I tried a vegan Oreo...it almost broke my jaw) and frankly the idea of food without eggs, meat, butter or milk just seem off-putting to me. What a shock it was when I found out the show "Cupcake Wars" featured a vegan chef! I mean butter, milk eggs...they seem slightly essential for baked goods (tasty ones anyway). Further research has told me that many restaurants offer at least one vegan option on their menus. Though I was a former skeptic I have some respect for vegans now. If all vegan food is as delicious as those cupcake I may just think about converting...then again I think I like milk way too much.
After the class about the intellegent design, I keeps thinking about where human comes from, and how humans evolve from our ancestors. I looked up wiki, and it stated that some scientists think human envolved from great apes and great apes are our clost relatives. Some argue that mental capacity and moral sensibility can not be explained by natural selection. My question is, no matter great apes or monkeys or other mammals, they all have hair except whale and human. Can that prove that human maight lived under water for a long period of time and then came to land again? Or human's lack of hair came from genetic mutation? But if it is genetic mutation, why other mammals don't? I think this is a really interesting question to think about.
I didn't realize how long the smoking debate had gone on for before I was alive. I have grown up in a time where it was a solid fact that smoking was bad for you, that was the norm. And its also funny to me with all the (relatively) new legislation going on, that I'll be able to tell my children that I lived in a time where you were allowed to smoke in restaurants!
But what I find interesting is that the benefits from not smoking are still being discovered. I just read an article that since Scotland banned smoking from public places in 2006, hospitals are treating less children for asthma! Thats interesting, less smoking leads to less asthma in children. That pretty much seems like common knowledge to anyone who grow up in our generation! Its just funny what you hold true depending on what was "fact" when you are growing up. Another good legislation they're thinking of passing is to not allow you to smoke in cars while their are minors in the car. I think that is a great idea, no one wants to see a 3 year old in a smoke-filled car. And who do we have to thank for this advancement for the health of children?
"It's really become part of the lifestyle here," Naiman says. She argues that the Scottish study and similar research foster acceptance of smoking bans. "The scientific evidence makes people willing to accept increasingly legislated changes in their lives," she says.
Now many of you would certainly disagree and to some extent, I would even disagree with myself. But we must also be very open minded and understand that this disagreement is elicited by our natural tendency to be chronologically biased. And in order to recognize this bias, we must look at history not through our current perspective that is in the year 2010, but rather a year say much later in the future...say 4000 AD and ask ourselves, based on the views we have on the beliefs that the ancients were fervent about, what would people in 4000 think about our fervent beliefs (that by the way, includes our current "science"). And believe it or not, they would most likely view what we call science today is laughable just as we view Greek mythology well...as simply mythology.
Walking on campus of PSU, it seems that every single person is either talking on their phone or looking down at it sending or receiving a text message. Our generation revolves around technology and that is suppose to be a good thing, but is it always? Having cell phones allows us to always be in contact with our friends, boyfriends, familes ect. And most of communication through cell phones has gone to texting instead of calling. Texting can be a good thing but I think that it can also be difficult to interpret what is being said...you can not hear the sound, tone, expression of someone over a text message which can lead to easy misinterpretations. Another thing about texting is whenever you are hanging out with someone and you hear their phone go off and they immediately go to respond..it makes it seem like you are unimportant and it isn't a good feeling. What do you guys think about texting and where it's taking us in the future?
Last week in psychology, I spent my time learning about nature v. nurture and the different stages of adolescents. Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development stood out to me and I took great interest in learning the different characteristics of the four stages. However after reading an article in Time Magazine my little world of awe came crashing down. The article focuses specifically on Piaget's "Preoperational" stage. The preoperational stage is explained as children ages two to seven years who represent the world with images and words, use intuition instead of logic, and pretend play. It is also the stage at which children are known to have egocentrism which, to explain briefly, is when they are unable to imagine the world from others points of view.
Contrary to Piaget's theory, the article hints that children may be smarter than we give them credit for. Three scientists used squirrels, baseballs and basketballs to conduct an experiment involving 72 preschoolers. Long story short they were surprised to find that after telling the preschoolers that the squirrels preferred baseballs, the preschoolers would only offer baseballs to them to play with and rarely the basketballs. Therefore this proves that at age four, the children were able to take the squirrels likes and preferences into consideration opposing Piaget's theory that between ages two and seven children only cared about what they liked.
I really recommend that you read this article especially if you have ever taken a psychology course. "What Do Kids Known? More Than You Think" is very interesting and easy to imagine/relate to if you've ever spent time with a younger relative.
To read the full article online visit...
My last post, "Overturning Objective-Only Science," took a haphazard look at the 'gulf' between cognitive neuroscientists and theory of mind philosophers. Luckily, what I tried to articulate Dr. Maurice Bloch conveniently explained several days later in his Culture and Cognition article, "Can Anthropologists and Other Cognitive Scientists Live Together?".
The objective versus subjective argument that I made - "Western Science has become so highly invested in objective-only examination that subjectivity has lost its rightful place within the Academy" - depicts what Dr. Bloch would call a discrepancy between the experts' external and internal base lines.
"One can put the matter over simply by saying that the theoretical starting point of, for example, a cognitive psychologist is "external" while the starting point of a social anthropologist is "internal". The analytical tools of the psychologist, the questions she ask[s], the categories of analysis she uses - categories such as "concepts" or "mind" - have all been defined in a discourse that is external to the subjects of the enquiry. On the other hand, an anthropologist tries to use as the ground from which to produce her analysis the cognitive tools of the subjects of her enquiry as they are available to them in the particular place and the particular time they are located. The significance of using this "internal" base line has been stressed by anthropologists again and again, perhaps most eloquently by Malinowski with his well known phrase "from the native's point of view"."
What's more, these base lines are in fact starting points for a deeper discourse.
"This is, first of all, because the gulf between the "native's" point of view and that of the natural scientist is nowhere as great as much anthropology and cognitive science has pretended it is. Such a stance made anthropology forget that both the scientist and the people studied live in roughly the same world which is governed by the same laws of physics, biology, chemistry and sociology and that both have similar brains moulded by evolution in order to deal with this physical, biological chemical and social world. There is a sense in which both the scientist's and the people's points of view are "internal": they are internal not to any particular group or individual but to the human species as a whole. The misleading illusion of absolute distance between natural scientists and ethnographers is the product of the historically created opposition between nature and culture and the anthropological fantasy of a "culture" that could exist outside "nature". My first conclusion is, therefore that anthropologists have, to a large extent, no other choice than to be "externalist" (that is, human internalist) when they think they are being internalist from the point of view of a particular group."
In order to begin melding disciplines, we need reconsider what Dr. Bloch brands, "the historically created opposition between nature and culture". I believe this opposition is actually the product of nature and culture's hermeneutical relationship.
"Furthermore, the specificities brought about by human history should not be thought as merely creating an environment for people but also, to a significant extent, as creating the very people that the environment surrounds."
Although we cannot objectively deconstruct this hermeneutic circle (i.e. use an external point of view to solve the nature/culture hermeneutic), we can reexamine the data by combining both external and internal perspectives.
"The fact of the continual process of historical construction of human beings has the methodological implication that if we want to explain human action, rather than merely describe it, we have no alternative but to remember that it is brought about by people from the inside. It is from the "inside" that people live their lives, though that does not mean that this inside is free of the implications of the neurological mechanisms of our brain or of the nature of the world (though both the brain and the world are changing)."
In order to initiate this interdisciplinary melding, cognitive scientists and anthropologists must cooperate and seriously consider each other's insights.
"The reason why cooperation between scholars such as anthropologists and cognitive scientists is in fact much easier than it might seem is thus because neither side is quite what they believe they are. The externalism of natural science, as it applies to human cognition, is much more internalist than it makes out. The internalism of interpretative anthropology is much more externalist than it imagines. What has obscured this is the futility of the nature/culture dichotomy. The fact that the disciplines are closer than they believe they are does not, however, completely eliminate the epistemological problem but it greatly diminishes it."
What is needed to overturn 'objective-only science' is the collaborative effort of both anthropologists and cognitive scientists. Let's just hope they don't leave it to administration.
A couple of years ago I had to read the novel called My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. The story is about the benefits and disadvantages of a genetically made child that was conceived through in vitro fertilization.The main character named Anna Fitzgerald was specifically made to have the same genetic blood type to match her older sister Kate Fitzgerald who had leukemia. At the moment Anna was born the doctors rushed to give Kate some of the blood platelets which were in Anna's umbilical cord to save her. Throughout Anna's life she continued to donate blood and even go through a bone marrow transplant to save her sister, but her mother seemed to never ask her if she wanted to be put into those situations.Anna then decided she wanted to be emancipated from her parents when they wanted her to give one of her kidneys to Kate. She didn't want to go through all of those surgeries anymore when she didn't need to go through them because she was not sick.This situation brings up children's rights that she should be able to have the right to choose because many times she has had complications after given blood transfusions to her sister. Do you think that children should be genetically made to save another person's life? Is it right for the child to be put into these circumstances when he or she does not even need the surgery?
With that said, I think it is a good thing to see people talking about what they are passionate about. Scientists are geeks, but that's a good thing. Everyone should be passionate about something. On the other hand, there's a line that is crossed when you should respect the opposite opinion. When the guys were playing poker in the one scene, things got out of hand. I believe the best thing is to agree to disagree. That's what I usually do. Example: last week my roommate's friend came over my apartment, had a few beers, and talked about the football game that was on. He asked us if we believed that the athletes deserved millions of dollars to play a sport. He almost got into a fight because my roommate would insist every time that their entertainment is no value to him. Although I disagreed, I mentioned that sure they should get paid but some contracts these days are just ridiculous.
Anyway, it was pretty funny to see scientists fight over theories.
-- according to Nobel Laureate Richard Smalley, by the end of 2010 (just months from now) 90% of the world's scientists and engineers with advanced degrees will live in Asia.
-- 80% of people being trained in the advanced physical sciences in the United States are from abroad.
-- because the opportunities are now greater abroad, we are no longer retaining them in the USA.
-- If we do not turn this trend around, we will have outsourced innovation.
And once we have outsourced innovation, our country's ability to compete will be over. My concern over this is so great that I have devoted the past year and a half (7 days a week 10 hours a day) to organizing a Science Festival.
So why have a Science Festival?
Society gets what it celebrates! As
a culture, we celebrate movie stars, rock stars and athletes and we generate a
lot of them, but we don't celebrate science and engineering.
The Festival is analogous to an art, music or literary Festival but it is focused on Science and Engineering and accomplishes its mission via hands-on demonstrations, fun demos, and presentations including art, music, comedy, film and theatre.
The Festival kicks off in just three weeks, offering over
150 FREE events for the public - all geared toward sparking an interest in
Science. I have pulled together over 750 companies, universities, research labs,
federal agencies, professional societies, community groups and science outreach
You can find out all the details at: www.usasciencefestival.org.
Click on the calendar to see dates, times and descriptions of all the fascinating events and opportunities.
The grand finale will be a two day EXPO on the National Mall in Washington D.C. (and surrounding venues) on October 23-24, 2010--- over 1,500 fun, hands-on interactive activities and 75 stage shows for all ages. There will be stuff for the mildly curious to the science professional. You can learn about fun topics like the science of the magic of Harry Potter, the mathematics of jump roping, the physics of superheroes, the chemistry of Thanksgiving Dinner, the engineering of baseball bats and balls, the science behind special effects in movies, trends in Global Warming, renewable energy sources of the future .... (This is a completely non-profit, non-commercial, fun and educational initiative.)
You can operate state-of-the-art robots, laugh with science comedians, be mesmerized by science magicians and mathemagicians, converse with astronauts, Nobel Laureates, science celebrities like Bill Nye the Science Guy and even scientists of the past, fly a fighter jet simulator, enter a virtual reality environment, be a CSI agent, make a virus out of marshmallows and toothpicks, try your hand at using a surgical robot, discover methods of measuring global warming, learn how to transform your car so it can run off a cuisinart etc.
And --- while having fun --- you can leave with information about science scholarships, internships, mentorship programs, jobs and much more.
But that's not all - there will be 50 satellite events occurring throughout the United States. Look here to view a map of Satellite Events: www.usasciencefestival.org/satellite-event-directory
We have received bipartisan support for our program from over 100 Senators and Representatives."
As I child, I would love using a hose to create my own rainbows in my driveway by spraying it up in the air. Plus, I remember seeing a rainbow on my way to the pep rally.
Rainbows are formed "when light from the Sun encounters a water droplet (spherical in shape), it penetrates the outer boundary of the droplet. As it enters, the light is bent (refracted) and scattered (disperse) into a continuous band of colors (a rainbow of colors)."
Quote From: http://www.myuniversalfacts.com/2006/04/how-rainbows-are-formed-what-causes.html
The saying goes that college years are the best years in an individual's life. You go from being in an environment were you are in a classroom 9 hrs. a day eating cafeteria food, and taking about football, colleges, and girls to a place where you are a free man, were nobody tells you what to, where to be, or where to go. One of the problems a lot of college students find during their first year of school is the lack of knowledgeable they have in comparison to your classmates due to the miss use of your brain. After doing some research I found a website that helps people increase their brain power, and ultimately become smarter. I figures that besides the knowledge that you will obtain from this class, you should also learn better learning techniques and how to properly use your brain.
I hope all off you have a chance to look at the website, increase your brain power, and go from being the dumbest in your group to being the smartest.
But livestock producers aren't taking this easily. They argue that "...a direct link between farms and human illness has not been proved." This argument reminds me heavily of the early studies done on whether or not smoking causes cancer. We can only look to the future to see how this debate unfurls.
Anybody have the fascination as a child to be an astronaut? Still have that aspiration, but not the same motivation to actually train and study to be in space (science major=not my favorite)?
Boeing is now in the tourism business, the space-tourism business. Previous to this anouncement, only aristocrats and the extremely wealthy could embark on a journey to space (think people with approx. $50 million to spare). Now, backed by the Obama administration, Boeing is now in the works to create a program that can take people to space, commercially.
Who would wanna take the journey?
Lola Cañamero of the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield, England, says that young patients are quite willing to suppress disbelief and bond with the robot, with one caveat--the robot has to be capable of expressing emotion: "And the robot must not only learn to express emotions themselves but read them in the patient, all of which is a tremendous challenge."
The dream of a friendly bot that could emote is old, but fiction is way ahead of science. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's "Nexi", along with "Kansei" from Meiji University in Japan were some of the first efforts in the last decade. Both tried to replicate real human faces with lifelike expressions. But according to Belpaeme, "The effect was eerie. You enter the room with one of these things and your brain is screaming at you, 'Don't get so close to that!'" Which is why ALIZ-E and other efforts at robot caregivers for children have shied away from other than simple toylike facial expressions, choosing to express emotion other ways."
I figured this would be an interesting post for us college students. We came from our moms washing our sheets on our clean mattresses, to beds that have been being used for who knows how long. Bed bugs are something that are very scary to think about, as you can see in the pictures below, they will severely bite up your body. Read this and become aware of bedbugs and what they bring with them!
<<Rest of this entry deleted by A Read on May 4, 2011 after request by J Hatch, Owner of St Paul Media Inc on grounds that much of the rest of this entry infringes the copyright owners rights.>>
Though it may seem unnatural for one species to breed with another (beastiality if a human in involved), it is actually quite common in the animal world. A New York Times article states that about 10% of animals occasionally breed with other species. Let me start off by saying that the names they give the products of these cross breeds are mostly ridiculous (not to mention that the majority of them are also quite ridiculous looking as well...see picture below). Alright a mule isn't that weird but when you're calling an animal a beefalo (bison-beef cattle) that's when you start to sound a bit odd. But I digress.
The article suggests that because these hybrids contain a brand new conbination of genes they may very well be able to survive in certain place and under certain conditions that neither of their parents would be able to handle. This has been proven with plants such as sunflowers and honeysuckle hybrids, though the same trend has yet to be observed in the animal kingdom.
Whether these animals are able to adapt to new surroundings could impact biology greatly. Also if some of these hybrids are not sterile like mules are we could have entire prides of ligers (Napoleon knew what he was talking about) roaming around Africa in the near future. Though they may seem like a mistake at first, these hybrids could change the animal kingdom drastically.
There are many myths about the effect music has on human health. Most commonly that classical music is good for the brain, which is why pregnant women are sometimes advised to listen to classical music. Unfortunately this phenomena is understudied. Particularly because it is difficult to measure results and get clear data. The large number variables that would impact the effect of the music in real world humans also makes it difficult to understand.
However some research has been done; I discovered in an article that provided data to back up the music therapy hypothesis.
Psychologist Charles Emery did a study testing the effects of music on physical activity. Half of the subjects exercised with music and the other half without. After the physical activity all subjects were tested for mental activity. On average, participants who listened to music scored twice as high as those who did not listen to music.
Psychologist Frances Rausher discovered the benefits of engaging in music too. Her reserch showed that playing and writing music increases brain function, and can even increase IQ. 6 year old children who received music lessons as opposed to other or no instruction got a 2 to 3 point boost in IQ. The wide range of mental activity involved in playing, writing, and reading music stimulates the brain and helps it to grow.
As far as relaxation, things still are not so clear. The article says that listening to music that makes you feel happy or relaxed can have some of the same effects as restful sleep. This, they say, reduces stress which is one of the biggest health hazards. Stress. There's that word again. Nobel Prize winning scientist Bary Marshall once told me that when doctors don't know whats wrong with you they call it "stress". There may not be very concrete evidence yet, but I think we all understand how music can make us feel better, even if it is only a qualitative observation.
One must also remember that personal taste plays a role in whatever health benefits may give. Those who enjoy heavy metal or hypnotic club music may not find the soothing quality that classical music listeners get. I do however believe it is important to research music therapy and other non-traditional forms of healing. We live in a culture where every illness or ailment is treated with a pill prescribed by a doctor. While these prescription drugs are helpful I believe that we as a society overdo it. There are safer, more natural ways to alleviate discomfort. Unfortunately, the health care industry is so big and worth so much money that trying to find these alternative forms of healing will be difficult.
How is it that cockroaches, who venture through the most cruddy and unsanitary places, survive? They crawl through dead tissue, sewage, trash sites and dead tissue where bacteria and parasites are overwhelmingly present. Microbiologist Simon Lee disclosed that cockroaches kill more than 90% of a type of E. coli that causes meningitis and killed methicillin-resistant staph (which is a bacteria that is very resistant to most antibiotics.) The colleagues at the University of
Nottingham were interested in insects and the ways that they fight off bacteria and diseases. They began by rounding up various body parts from cockroaches and locusts and inserted various types of bacteria to penetrate overnight. They found that the cockroach and locusts brain and thorax nerve tissue terminated almost 100% of the bacteria. One of the colleagues stated: "Insects make hundreds of antimicrobial compounds, and it may be that very high concentrations of those molecules would be required for fighting an infection in humans." In the future, these molecules could be used in fighting human infection. I thought it was pretty interesting to think that a cockroach, which most humans find disgusting, may be a solution to solving some of our toughest bacterial diseases.
In the picture above, a "cuckoo chick barely fits in the nest of a great reed warbler, yet misguided warbler parents have raised it. A new study finds that in areas where the climate has warmed, cuckoos are starting to trick different species into raising their young."
Unfortunately, there have been climate changes which have drove them out of sync with the host of their eggs. Researcher, Andres Pape Moller, says that he wouldn't be surprised if the short-distance migrant species faces extinction within the next few decades.
Whatever the case, I find it both sick and hilarious that cuckoos make other birds take care of their young, who just eat up the other birds.
Article Source: http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/63386/title/Cuckoos_thrown_off_by_climate_change
This is a question philosophers and scientists struggle to answer.
There are, of course, many theories as to why we dream. From Sigmund Freud's belief that we dream about doing things we desire that we can't consciously permit ourselves to do to the theory that we just dream about random thoughts and images that we see and experience throughout the day, there are plenty of possible, and some plausible, explanations as to why our brain creates these mini movies on a a regular basis.
Initially, dreams mostly underwent study and observation by philsophers and thinkers who were trying to use the process to better understand the human psyche. However, in more recent reasearch, neurologists have even put their two cents in:
The above article is a bit to sift through but if you read even just bits of it, I'm sure you'll find it pretty fascinating.
It explains that the neuroscience of dreaming, although fairly new in the world of dream science, has nevertheless quickly become a major source of interest and experimentation. Professor J. Allan Hobson argues that dreams are what the brain makes of chemical changes and random impulses during REM. He goes on to explain that the high concentration of serotonin in the brain present while sleeping could very well be the cause of our vague memory when it comes to dreams.
As with any theory, however, Hobson's is under scrutiny and, while plausible, it is not proven.
What are your thoughts about the neurological study of dreams?
Also, if you get a chance, you should check out the different theories behind dreams linked in the second paragraph of this entry. They're all quite interesting and I'm eager to know what you think about these dream studies.
"But in science the credit goes to the man who convinces the world, not to the man to whom the idea first occurs." ~Francis Darwin
I am a senior now, but my family would tease me before I left for college to beware of the dreaded freshman 15! But I wondered why I would be more suspectible to weightgain in my freshman year compared to my senior year in highschool. (When i actually lived with my parents-- who had food in their fridge!) I managed to avoid the freshman 15 (which actually it is estimated that college freshman only gain 5 pounds) but now its becoming less easy in my senior year to keep it off! Why? That is what I would like to figure out... The article I read states many different correlations that could be the cause. There are many different variables that can affect this.
-Students without scales were less likely to notice the gradual weight gain taking place on their bodies.
-The ease of late night ordering and the unbelievable choices offered in a college town (something we can all relate to in State College)
-Students that eat late at night end up skipping breakfast, the most important meal of the day
-Stress! Something a college student knows a thing or two about.
This is a good example of correlation to causation. Who knows which one of these variables (stress, late night binge, no scale) is leading to the outcome (weight gain)? And which variables only seem like they are correlation, but really have no input in the outcome whatsoever? I think more testing will be needed.....
Andrew and our noble prize winning guest speaker have both brought up the topic of migraine headaches. I have decided to blog about my thoughts and experiences with migraines. To the best of my knowledge, migraines are derived from hereditary reasons, or other factors triggering migraines, such as: food, light, and sound. I have had migraine headaches for my entire life. Mine are from both hereditary and other reasons, I believe. My father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, all have had serious migraines. Just the men in our family seem to have the more seriously categorized migraines, which I thought was pretty interesting. Since I was a little kid I have had cat scans, and all other sorts of testing done on my head to find out more about these migraines. In grade school, I would miss around two days of school a week because I would be bed-ridden by a migraine. I was on a lot of different medicine to help, but none of them were too productive. After 3rd grade my migraines seemed to get less frequent, and we thought I was through the tough stage. After freshman year of public high school, I transferred to a boarding military academy. Being from a military family, I did not think the adjustment would cause too much change. My migraines resurfaced almost immediately upon arriving at my new school, most likely due to stress and many other possible reasons. I was having a severe migraine every other day, so we decided to try out some new medicine. At the new school I was learning to be a pilot, and the FAA did not allow me to continue taking my new medicine. Therefore, I had to stick it out with no medicine or treatment. Finally, I have two questions: Is there a safe procedure to reduce the frequency of severe migraine headaches? And, is their a difference between hereditary migraines, and migraines caused by other factors?
What has sparked me to write this blog is my love of nut butters of course! I wanted to do some more research on them and see just how nutritious they are. According to "http://hubpages.com/hub/Nut-Butter-Nutrition", "Most are rich in vitamin E, B vitamins, zinc, and magnesium and copper, elements involved in particular the proper functioning of the nervous system and bone health." There is also much fiber and protein in these snacks that make them a perfect addition to a snack or breakfast.
The only down side to nut butters? The fat content. But don't worry too much because they contain the good kinds of fats. They contain "mono-and polyunsaturated fats, fats that have a positive influence on blood cholesterol."
The article also said that research that was done at Harvard University pointed out that "regular consumption of peanut butter was associated with reduced risk of suffering from type 2 diabetes."
There are many benefits to eating nut butters so don't stray away from them just because of their fat content.
Because he doesn't remember anything, Kyle has no home, no social security card- he has nothing. He can't drive. He can't get a job. He can't collect benefits because no one can figure out who he actually is.
The part of this article that really surprised me, was that they used genealogy DNA testing to try and figure out where his ancestry might be. I didn't realize that they could actually do that now. While it's not a for sure, 100% accurate process, they can still get a general sense. The expert that did his testing figures that he came from a line of people with the surnames Davidson and Powell.
I just thought it was interesting! Here is the link to his story, if anyone is interested in reading up about him: Meet Benjaman Kyle, The Man With No Identity
Concerning education, I'd personally rather not have teachers who don't believe in Intelligent Design teaching it. At the same time however, I do believe both Evolution and Intelligent Design should be presented. How this can be done without having disagreement among parents, school boards etc. I am unsure. What do you think?
So sitting in my economics class, I came across this article which is all about why America is getting so fat. This article, however, was really pertinent to our class because it is talking about CAUSAL RELATIONSHIPS: is it America's obesity that is asking for larger portion sizes, or are larger portion sizes causing obesity? If you look at the size of a McDonald's meal, it is evident how much portion sizes have grown since its inception (realize that the first McDonalds meals were the size of the kid's meals now). What do you think?
ok, so we've all learned that the double blind placebo experiments are the most effective experiments in the case of proving your point. I've recently had a thought on this whole process and the actually use of the placebo. a placebo is given as a pacifier or to the control group in experiments on the efficacy of a drug; an example would be a sugar pill.
In experiments we have looked at, like the Barry Marshall double blind study and the worms study, the control group that actually took the placebo wasnt far behind in productivity/healing of the subject. The effect was almost as great on the people who were ingesting sugar pills instead of the actual medication. this to me is very interesting. this could prove that the mind is a far more powerful tool than any medication! the fact that all medications do have there side effects is another point. If the patient thinks they are taking the medication then their mind is expecting the positive effects, but since it would be a placebo, there would be no negative side effects since it is not the actual thing. this could be a whole new way of attempting to heal people. the power of their mind could in fact bestow greater power in the healing process than the side effect inriched medications. im not saying that im against medicine but maybe in some cases, it is not necessarily all that necessary...
My roommate mentioned to me in passing how they never use air fresheners at her house. She said for one reason or another, her mom just doesn't trust them. As her mom put it, "You just never know about these things down the road..." Their family instead opts for an open window to air out the house. I was a little perplexed by this. Like most people, I have at least a can or so of febreze sitting around my apartment and have never thought twice about it.
However, this column from the Washington Post may make you think twice about using that air freshener...maybe you are better off with a stinky apartment after all! This is from a weekly green column, called The Green Lantern. The article mostly discusses the history of aerosol air fresheners, starting with the release of the first Glade product in 1956. Eventually, one of the "magic" ingredients in these fresheners, chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) was actually found to be breaking up ozone molecules that protect us from UV light. So, out they went. Air fresheners were quickly named "CFC free". Yet, there is new research being done about the concerns of new toxins in these air fresheners, as well as the amount of energy an ordinary plug in freshener can use (about equivalent to a barrel's worth of oil a year!).
Now, this whole idea that air fresheners are quietly hurting us could be complete bogus. However, it could be like many things down the road, in that, we think how crazy we were for using this artificial scent in our houses when we could have simply opened a window and saved ourselves a lot of trouble. What do you think? Are you going to keep your febreze handy or leave it to good ol' nature to make your apartment smell fresh and clean?
Myth #1: Marijuana use has been scientifically proven to be really harmful.
- Fact #1 In 1972, after reviewing the scientific evidence, the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse concluded that while marijuana is not entirely safe, its dangers had been grossly overstated.
- Fact #2 In 1995, based on thirty years of scientific research, editors of the British journal Lancet (the British equivalent of New England Journal of Medicine) concluded that "the smoking of cannabis, even long term, is not harmful to health."
- Fact #1 Marijuana use by kids, like alcohol and tobacco, is not OK. Its use is illegal, and the effect of marijuana on kids in their developmental stage has not been studied. Common sense tells us that marijuana use by kids is not a good idea.
- Fact #2 Marijuana use by kids, coupled with other drug use and behavioral problems, can be a sign that a child needs professional attention.
- Fact #3 90% of kids who try marijuana don't go on to use other drugs, and do not continue to use marijuana.
- Fact #1 Most people who smoke marijuana smoke it only occasionally. A small minority of Americans --less than one percent - smoke marijuana on a daily or near-daily basis. An even smaller minority develops dependence on marijuana. Marijuana is not physically addictive.
- Fact #1 Over 70 million people have tried marijuana. Most marijuana users never use any other illegal drug. Indeed, for the vast majority of people, marijuana is the last drug they try, not a "gateway" to other drugs. If it were a gateway drug and if it were so addictive, we would have more than 3 million heroin and cocaine addicts in the U.S.
- Fact #2 Marijuana is the most popular illegal drug in the United States today. Therefore, people who have used less popular drugs such as heroin, cocaine and LSD are likely to have also tried marijuana
- Fact #1 Marijuana produces immediate, temporary changes in thoughts, perceptions, and information processing. The cognitive process most clearly affected by marijuana is short-term memory. In laboratory studies, subjects under the influence of marijuana have no trouble remembering things they learned previously. However, they display diminished capacity to learn and recall new information. This diminishment only lasts for the duration of intoxication.
- Fact #1 Every serious scholar and government commission examining the relationship between marijuana use and crime has reached the same conclusion: Marijuana does not cause crime. The vast majority of marijuana users do not commit crimes. Almost all human and animal studies show that marijuana decreases aggression.
- Fact #1 There is NO evidence that marijuana causes infertility in men or women. Most studies of humans have found that marijuana has no impact on sex hormones. In those studies showing an impact, it is modest, temporary, and of no apparent consequence for reproduction.
- Fact #2 There is NO scientific evidence that marijuana delays adolescent sexual development, has a feminizing effect on males, or a masculinizing effect on females.
- Fact #1 Moderate smoking of marijuana appears to pose minimal danger to the lungs.
- Fact #1 There is no compelling evidence that marijuana contributes substantially to traffic accidents and fatalities. In driving studies, marijuana produces little or no car-handling impairment - consistently less than that produced by low to moderate doses of alcohol and many legal medications.
- Fact #2 People should not drive while under the influence of marijuana. At some doses, marijuana affects perceptions and psychomotor performance.
- Fact #1 There is no lethal dose of marijuana. You cannot die from "binge smoking" like you can from binge drinking.
- Fact #2 The number of people in hospital emergency rooms who say they have used marijuana has increased. This does not mean that people come to the emergency room because of marijuana. Many more teenagers use marijuana than hard drugs like heroin and cocaine. As a result, when teenagers visit hospital emergency rooms, they report marijuana much more frequently than they report heroin or cocaine.
- Fact #3 In 1994, fewer than 2 percent of drug-related emergency room visits involved the use of marijuana alone.
- Fact #1 Marijuana is the same drug it has always been.
- Fact #2 Potency data from the early 1980s do not show an increase in the average THC content of marijuana.
- Fact #1 There is no evidence that spending billions of dollars over the past 20 years for anti-drug messages has diminished young people's interest in trying marijuana.
- Fact #2 For most age groups, rates of marijuana use in the Netherlands are similar to those in the United States. However, for young adolescents, rates of marijuana use are LOWER in the Netherlands than in the United States.
For more information about "Marijuana Myths,
Marijuana Facts" by Lynn Zimmer and John P. Morgan,
published by the Lindesmith Center.
This article came from http://www.changetheclimate.org/facts/
(Note: This is related to Andrew Read's post on powers naps... but is excessively long for a comment. See his post here: http://www.personal.psu.edu/afr3/blogs/SIOW/2010/09/sleep.html#_login)
I've been interested in sleep patterns for years, because I, myself, have a terrible habit of sleeping excessively... or so others around me say.
In high school, I had an extremely difficult time rising at 6 am and would ABSOLUTELY need a nap (at least an hour in duration) after getting home from classes and cross country practice.
My freshman year of college, it only worsened. I napped every chance I got, really. In between classes, after dinner, midday on weekends. Granted, I went to bed late EVERY night (in both high school and college, usually after 2 am). When possible to sleep and rise naturally, I would typically awaken around 10 a.m..
When falling asleep and rising naturally, my body takes roughly 8 hours of sleep per night, and a midday nap of 1 to 2 hours.
...But why is this? And what does this say about my circadian rhythm?
According to the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, "Circadian rhythms are important in determining human sleep patterns. The body's master clock, or SCN, controls the production of melatonin, a hormone that makes you sleepy. Since it is located just above the optic nerves, which relay information from the eyes to the brain, the SCN receives information about incoming light. When there is less light--like at night--the SCN tells the brain to make more melatonin so you get drowsy." (http://www.nigms.nih.gov/publications/factsheet_circadianrhythms.htm)
While my sleep schedule is clearly not the most efficient (8 hours per night ideally, and 2 hours midday), it is how my body has operated for years. And nothing else has seemed to work for me.
This has led to me several questions:
- Do I, for some reason, release more melatonin during the day or is a different chemical/factor the culprit for my sleeping patterns?
- If it is related to melatonin, why is my body producing this when the most light is available, and not when the sun goes down? Why am I drowsy in the afternoon as opposed to when it gets dark outside?
My picture is a tad different, I figured it wouldn't hurt to post!
Both my rommate and i like to listen to music while we do our homework, and both of us prefer to study to classical music? I've heard that listen to classical music makes you smarter, but has it ever been proven to be true? I believe that music affects your mood (I like have classical music on when I study because it calms me), but how can it actually improve intelligence?
Even though it's only mid-September I look around campus and already see many students in their Ugg boots. Even though I don't necessarily own Uggs, I sport Emu's which pretty much look identical. Personally, I think it's far to early to wear Uggs (after all, I'm still wearing 2 for $5 Old Navy flip-flops! Best. Deal. Ever.) but to each her own. Very few people know, though, that Uggs are very bad for your feet. Yes, they're very warm and comfortable, but they can lead to long-term foot problems. Uggs have no arch. They're completely flat. Wearers can get shin splits and heal spurs. While the article I read claims that there are boots which have a heel, I have only see the typical flat ones.
So even know I know that they are bad for me, I won't stop wearing them. I think they're cute (I'm in the minority, I know!) and perfect for walking in the winter. What about you? Will you stop? And if you don't wear UGGs, what DO you wear in the winter?
How CUTE is this picture?! I looove it. =D
In a recent article, researchers were interested testing if fish responded to seeing their own reflections differently than they did when seeing another fish. The fish tested in this experiement were male cichlids. The researchers observed that "the part of the brain associated with fear and other negative emotions becomes active when the fish fight their mirror images." Previous research has found that animals such as great apes, elephants, dolphins and magpies were able to identify themeselves when seeing their reflections. In the new study on cichlids, the team did not observe a difference between the way cichlids acted when seeing their reflection or when seeing another fish. But, strangely enough, when scientists looked at the fish brain they discovered that when a cichlid sees its own reflection, the brain was especially active a "region similar to the amygdala," which is correlated with fear and other negative emotions. When a cichlid went after another fish, scientists discovered that they did not have the same activity in the amygdala regions of their brains.
If they can not distinguish their own reflection from other fish then I wonder why the brain activity is different? What are your thoughts?
In this article, respected scientist Dr. Stephen Hawking states that aliens are nearly certain to exist and that humans should not be looking for contact with them. He believes that aliens may be coming to raid planet earth of its resources and such and that humans may be threatened. He relates this theory to when Christopher Columbus first landed in America and how the Native Americans felt. Hawkings states that the universe has, "100 billion galaxies, each containing hundreds of millions of stars. In such a big place, Earth is unlikely to be the only planet where life has evolved."
I completely agree with Hawkings in that aliens are real. I am so curious to find out more about them... where they come from? what they want? how do they live? what is their life like? I am hoping that at some point in my lifetime some of these questions will be answered.
What do you guys think? Could this stuff be real.. or is it just silly non- sense?
Heres the website if anyone wants to take a look at the article:
I personally am extremely intruged by the alien phenomenia. This article describes the abduction of three women (Mona Stafford, Louise Smith, Elaine Thomas) on January 6, 1976 in Kentucky.The three women were in their red Chevrolet on their way back from a birthday dinner traveling down Highway 78 when they all three reported seeing a bright, red object in the night sky. The object gradually got closer to their vehicle, and soon after Smith lost control of her car. The car quickly accelerated to 85 mph and Smith was unable to steer the wheel. The Chevy proceeded down the highway but was soon led off to a small pasture. The article states that, "They then were back on the road, and everything was as it was before." The weird thing is that an hour and twenty minutes had elapsed, unknown to the women. The women reported this event to police and gained serious media coverage. They were interviewed and put under hypnosis where they were made to re- live the events. The women all painfully reported that they were "taken abroad the unknown craft, and subjected to medical experimentation."
I for one, am very very interested in aliens and what else is out there boyond our galaxy. I believe that it would be arrogent of one to think that we, human beings on planet earth, are the only life force in the entire universes. There are billions of other galaxys out there for us to explore, now all we have to do is figure out how to get to them!
Here's the website if anyone wants to read more:
So maybe I'm the only one who has thought this, but there seems to be something about macaroni and cheese that seems to addict everyone.
What is so great about mac n' cheese?
So I'm sure all of us have heard about addictive foods and drinks that everyone loves and most of us attribute it to the good taste or good feeling we get from eating the food but consider this: could there actually be an addictive drug or element in the food that causes us to crave it?
I found out myself just a few years ago that Chinese food, much loved by people around the globe, contains the addictive additive monosodium glutamate (MSG). While the drug is generally considered not harmful to the public, it is believed to cause multiple ailments, specifically in children.
Not to mention the ever-famous traces of cocaine found in Coca-Cola and the insinuation about cocaine in Red Bull.
Could we be facing the same thing with the artificial flavoring and enhancers in this food favorite?
Personally, I don't understand the hype. I like it every once and a while, but I don't opt to have mac and cheese when given the choice.
What are your thoughts?
Okay, so maybe it doesn't exactly work like that...
As much as some people would like to use the excuse to party every weekend, this is only true to a point.
It was after our discussion in class about smoking that I started thinking about something Dr. Read said: smoking actually helped fight Parkinson's disease. How is it that something so harmful to one's health actually has its benefits?
And yet, while I was intrigued by the different entries about smoking, I wanted to make mine about something else. So then I thought about positive effects alcohol could possibly have. If smoking has positive aspects, why shouldn't drinking have some?
So I did a little research and here is what I found:
Basically, the article talks about the possibilities that alcohol reduces a person risk of getting diabetes and Alzheimer's. The two different studies, one conducted by the Dutch and the other by Spanish scientists, both showed that when a person drinks in moderation (one drink a day), is at a healthy weight, exercises regularly, doesn't smoke and maintains balanced diet, alcohol can actually counter the effects of both diabetes and Alzheimer's...or so it seems.
And while it could be nothing more than coincidence, there have been other proven cases that say alcohol, at least in moderate doses, can be good for a person.
Read the article and tell me your thoughts.
Fact: There is no convincing scientific evidence that marijuana causes psychological damage or mental illness in either teenagers or adults. Some marijuana users experience psychological distress following marijuana ingestion, which may include feelings of panic, anxiety, and paranoia. Such experiences can be frightening, but the effects are temporary. With very large doses, marijuana can cause temporary toxic psychosis. This occurs rarely, and almost always when marijuana is eaten rather than smoked. Marijuana does not cause profound changes in people's behavior.
Myth: Marijuana is Highly Addictive. Long term marijuana users experience physical dependence and withdrawal, and often need professional drug treatment to break their marijuana habits.
Fact: Most people who smoke marijuana smoke it only occasionally. A small minority of Americans - less than 1 percent - smoke marijuana on a daily basis. An even smaller minority develop a dependence on marijuana. Some people who smoke marijuana heavily and frequently stop without difficulty. Others seek help from drug treatment professionals. Marijuana does not cause physical dependence. If people experience withdrawal symptoms at all, they are remarkably mild.
Myth: Marijuana is More Damaging to the Lungs Than Tobacco. Marijuana smokers are at a high risk of developing lung cancer, bronchitis, and emphysema.
Fact: Moderate smoking of marijuana appears to pose minimal danger to the lungs. Like tobacco smoke, marijuana smoke contains a number of irritants and carcinogens. But marijuana users typically smoke much less often than tobacco smokers, and over time, inhale much less smoke. As a result, the risk of serious lung damage should be lower in marijuana smokers. There have been no reports of lung cancer related solely to marijuana, and in a large study presented to the American Thoracic Society in 2006, even heavy users of smoked marijuana were found not to have any increased risk of lung cancer. Unlike heavy tobacco smokers, heavy marijuana smokers exhibit no obstruction of the lung's small airway. That indicates that people will not develop emphysema from smoking marijuana.
This article was on Yahoo!'s top news feed so as I was checking my e-mail earlier, I had to look. It was such an interesting article that I had to blog about!
We all have many plastic containers in our kitchens that we use, but should we be using them?
The article states that, "Chemicals in plastic containers and other kitchenware may leach into the foods or drinks that they're holding. Scientific evidence suggests that some of these chemicals may be harmful to people, especially infants and children."
They mainly contain bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates which have been said to disturb hormones in the body.
In order to be 100% positive that you aren't getting any of these toxic substances in your body, studies recommend cutting down the amount of plastic containers you use and buy and also do not heat or freeze the containers because leakage of the toxins can be very bad.
I'm pretty sure a good percentage of us had a good "lol" when we saw that group on Facebook. In fact I think all 1,815,665 members of the Facebook group "When I was your age Pluto was a planet" group did. What I'm not so sure about is if all of those people know why it was deemed unworthy of its planetary rank. I mean let's face it! When they took out Pluto they took down a Sailor Scout, a Roman God, and a very clever and time-honored mnemonic device. Our youth has been robbed of knowing what our very elegant mothers just served nine of! So I decided to unveil the conspiracy behind the take down of Pluto. As luck would have there were actually several reasonable causes for it.
When Pluto was first discovered in
1930 by Cylde W Tombaugh originally it was assumed to be the size of the Earth.
It wasn't until 1973 when astronomers discovered Pluto's Moon Charon that this
changed. The discovery of Charon gave them the opportunity to accurately gauge
the mass of Pluto. It ended up being much smaller then they had thought. Pluto
is actually only 2,400 km (1,500 miles) across. A similar distance is the trip
from New York City to Miami. That trip is around a 1,300 mile journey and only
takes about 16 hours to travel by car and 4 hours by plane. However even after
the recalculation of its size Pluto was still assumed to be the largest thing
in our Solar System past Neptune.
From left to right: Earth, Moon, Pluto, Charon
Unfortunately for Pluto this was not the case. Over the past few decades scientists have been making massive strides in coming to understand our universe better. Not only have the discovered several more masses beyond Pluto but one of them has 25% more mass the Pluto. These few discoveries made people start to question "Well what exactly qualifies something as a planet?" These masses all had the same qualities as Pluto but were still not recognized as planets. So to put an end to the debate the International Astronomical Union was summoned!
Composed of the Nearly 2,500 astronomers from 75 countries, the IAU gathered in the Czech Republic capital, Prague. They assembled for a 12 day conference that would determine the new standards for what qualified something as a planet. It was decided that they would all vote on possible definitions. One version would have increased the number of planets to twelve so that it included Ceres and Eris. There was also an option to vote to keep all nine and have them remain as "Classical Planets" without any scientific rationality. The winning option was to bump the number of planets down to 8.
This decision resulted in Pluto being
demoted from planet to dwarf planet. Their justification behind this was the
Pluto did not meet all of the new criteria for what made a mass a planet. According to the newly set standards a planet
1. Orbit the sun
2. Be a sphere (meaning its own gravity should been strong enough to smooth out the planet)
3. Have a clear orbit (meaning that after the planet's formation it should have cleared out any debris with the exception of moons caught in the planets gravitational pull)
While Pluto does have two of these qualities it is missing the third. Pluto does not have its own exclusive orbit. Its moon, Charon, orbits on a common center of gravity with Pluto. It is suggested that the two act as a binary system. The evidence behind this is that the barycentre of their orbits does not like within either mass. The barycentre it is the center of mass on a planet where its moons orbit. For instance the earth's moon doesn't orbit the very center of the Earth. There is a point in the Earth's crust exactly 1,710 km down where both the mass of the Earth and the mass of the moon balance. Although the IAU has not yet ruled on a definition for binary dwarf planets so Charon is still considered to be Pluto's moon.
There is still controversy in the scientific community surrounding Pluto. Although it would seem the people who are most displeased with this are the public. In fact getting "plutoed" has now become a slang term According to Urbandictionary.com to be plutoed is defined as:
"To demean another to make them feel
as though they don't amount to anything. Just as the scientists did to Pluto.
It's okay Pluto; I'm not a planet either."
However despite the disapproval of the
public, Pluto is and will remain a dwarf planet. Scientists speculate that
there could be possible hundreds if not thousands of dwarf planets that lie
beyond Pluto. With the endless possibilities the universe has to offer who knows what they will discover next!
- holding your breath
- drink a glass of water quickly
- have someone frighten you (that never actually works)
- pull hard on your tongue (really?)
- bite on a lemon
- gargle with water
- drink from the far side of a glass
- use smelling salts
I learned that in the U.S. 1910 cases diagnosed annually and 440 deaths occur from it. If men can get breast cancer too, how come I have never heard about it?
These are two sites that I looked at. They are pretty interesting, and the second one has video clips showing how we can examine ourselves for lumps. I was originally say, "girls, check it out...but now I guess I have to say, "guys you should check it out too."
In case anyone was inspired by Barry Marshall to get their own Nobel Prize, here's a list of diseases that are said to be caused by stress:
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Ischemic Heart Disease
Acid Peptic Disease
Flu (by altering the function of the immune system)
Causing cancer to be more severe
One website I came across through Google had that peptic ulcers were caused by stress. Looks like Mr. Marshall might need to do some more lecturing.
What about diseases said to be caused by under-active stress system? Is It really possible to not only not have any stress, but to be under stressed?
So anxiety doesn't cause ulcers, but that doesn't mean it won't be having a negative impact on your life. 40 million adults, one in five, suffer from anxiety that disrupts their daily lives (Levine). Anxiety is something you are born with, a trait believed to be passed on from generation to generation. High anxiety can be traced though families. Do others in your family have high anxiety? Physical symptoms include stomach problems, nausea, and diarrhea, along with trouble sleeping, and muscle tension. This makes it understandable why stress and anxiety used to be linked with stomach ulcers. Just because anxiety isn't causing ulcers, doesn't mean it's something that should just be discarded. Having anxiety can lead to health issues. No need to worry though, high anxiety is the most treatable mental disease.
The Anxiety Disorders Association of America describes the differences between normal anxiety and an anxiety disorder.
Everyday Anxiety Anxiety Disorder Worry about paying bills, landing a job, a romantic breakup, or other important life events Constant and unsubstantiated worry that causes significant distress and interferes with daily life Embarrassment or self-consciousness in an uncomfortable or awkward social situation Avoiding social situations for fear of being judged, embarrassed, or humiliated A case of nerves or sweating before a big test, business presentation, stage performance, or other significant event Seemingly out-of-the-blue panic attacks and the preoccupation with the fear of having another one Realistic fear of a dangerous object, place, or situation Irrational fear or avoidance of an object, place, or situation that poses little or no threat of danger Making sure that you are healthy and living in a safe hazard-free environment Performing uncontrollable repetitive actions such as excessive cleaning or checking, or touching and arranging Anxiety, sadness, or difficulty sleeping immediately after a traumatic event Recurring nightmares, flashbacks, or emotional numbing related to a traumatic event that occurred several months or years before
Worry about paying bills, landing a job, a romantic breakup, or other important life events
Constant and unsubstantiated worry that causes significant distress and interferes with daily life
Embarrassment or self-consciousness in an uncomfortable or awkward social situation
Avoiding social situations for fear of being judged, embarrassed, or humiliated
A case of nerves or sweating before a big test, business presentation, stage performance, or other significant event
Seemingly out-of-the-blue panic attacks and the preoccupation with the fear of having another one
Realistic fear of a dangerous object, place, or situation
Irrational fear or avoidance of an object, place, or situation that poses little or no threat of danger
Making sure that you are healthy and living in a safe hazard-free environment
Performing uncontrollable repetitive actions such as excessive cleaning or checking, or touching and arranging
Anxiety, sadness, or difficulty sleeping immediately after a traumatic event
Recurring nightmares, flashbacks, or emotional numbing related to a traumatic event that occurred several months or years before
I grew up in a family where having faith in God is very important and I have always believe that God created us all. I had the opportunity of attending school in the Dominican Republic ( this is where my parents are from) and I will never forget the day when my Natural Science teacher was teaching my class about evolution and how it is believed that human beings descended from apes. My first impression was "Ewww we descended from an ape, no wonder people have hair in their legs and arms. Wait! but they have always told me God created us." I was kind of innocent at the time, so I got very confused, but the idea of descending from apes made sense to me, since we have certain similarities.
The worst part was that the teacher teaching this class was in the process of becoming a priest and now that I am grown and understand these views way better,I wish I could go back and ask him if he was teaching about evolution because it was mandatory by the school or if he had other reasons, and how he felt about teach about it. When I know for a fact he had a completely different view.
Even though Science has made sense of everything it studies and is making more people believe in it over God. I still believe that God created us all. For some reason everything I know about God and how this world and all the living things in it were created, make total sense to me. I am not against science because it helps our society in many ways, but these are just my beliefs and opinion about this controversial topic.
While that video might persuade us to buy Old Spice products, we must think about the possible consequences of using such products. According to the Global Healing Center
"Studies are now showing that continuous exposure to toxic chemicals in personal hygiene products, such as antiperspirants, may be related to allergic reactions, Alzheimer's, and even breast cancer in women."
This is because most of these products contain aluminum chlorohydrate and many other toxic chemicals in them.
Suggested ideas to stop letting aluminum into your body is to "Stop using common antiperspirants. Switch to mineral-based antiperspirants, or even better, a natural deodorant which does not block the sweat glands. I use the crystal salt deodorant and add about an ounce of colloidal silver."
They also noted that worsening of diet during stressful period contributed significantly in flare-ups of acne in these students.
Stress causes worsening of acne in two ways. First, by stimulating adrenal glands to produce more hormones and secondly, by slowing down the healing process...
...It has also been established that psychological stress can decrease the wound healing capacity of immune systems up to 40%. This factor doubles the impact of stress on acne. - - -
So apparently stress causes your body's healing process to slow down, in turn making your body produce acne more heavily. So does stress cause acne? Not directly but it definitely can effect certain factors to get to that point.
This is mainly intented for Dr. Read:
Im not exactly sure where to start but im basically making a hypothesis about a topic that i couldnt find any information on. So im asking if you do know of the topic or if not, what are your thoughts on the situation.
Ok well i would like to know if humans have any effect on the electronics we use. I first began to question this when i had my first laptop. When i used it, it worked perfectly fine pretty much all of the time. Then though, when my mom used it, it basically crashed and performed horribly a majority of the time. Eventually, she started using it more than me and now it is totally out of commision. She took it somewhere in hopes of getting it fixed but the workers said it was "unfixable." I then noticed this was a common effect that she had on other electronics she was using, including her phone, etc. Now, could it be because she uses them in harmful ways that will eventually wreck the software? Or does she have a certain "output" that interferes with the electronics? By output i mean the specific electronic current that her body omits (i dont know if that is the correct terminology but i hope you know what i mean). I think this is a very interesting question and i've since tryed noticing in other situations. I hope no one discovered this yet... Nobel Prize?! Haha But then again it seems almost everything has been. I hope you can help. thank you!
I found this clip and honestly I am disgusted and so shocked that parents would actually let their two year old child smoke a cigarette..yet alone 40 a day! This baby started smoking at 18 months, and the dad says the baby is healthy? How in the world could a parent ever condone this.
At first, I thought this clip was a joke, I was seriously waiting for "Gotcha!" at the end but it never came. I had to watch it 3 more times trying to figure out if this was really real.
What do you guys think of this video? Any thoughts or opinions?
Over the summer, I took an English class here at Penn State and I had to write about something to do with nature or natural being. I chose to write about the idea of designer babies because it really interested me. These babies are genetically engineered and conceived through in vitro fertilization. Parents are being granted the opportunity to choose characteristics for their child of hair color, eye color, blood type, and gender. As well as, one day their child could be engineered to be the top of the class, excel in sports, and whatever else is on the parents' wish list. I would have to disagree with this issue because I do not believe in this ability to choose even if they think they are doing what is best for their child. This could lead to discrimination and inequality with the gender choice because in certain countries they want more of a certain gender such as in China with boys. Parents can try to shape their child in the way that pleases them, but in the end the child will overrule and become his or her own person. From all this research in the news, it seems that these babies have become so commercial that one day couples could be able to walk into one of these clinics and look through a brochure of what they want their child to look like.
Why is our society so focused on this idea of perfection? Parents allow themselves to undergo this procedure to continue the movement of perfection that exists in our society without allowing their child to be accepted for how they are or will become. How can parents claim to want what is best for their child when they won't let them have the choice to become who they want to be? Would it not make more sense if the parent was more concerned about if the child would be healthy rather than the change of eye color? Besides, no one in our world is perfect or ever will be because everyone is unique in their own way. If everyone is made to be the same then there would be no diversity or originality in the world. Designer babies are in no way natural, and everyone needs to realize this because our society strives on this "perfect child." A child should be one of a kind not one of the same. They should be a fruitloop in a world of cheerios; not trying to fit the standards of society.
This is a youtube video showing duodenal ulcer diesease caused by an H. pylori infection. I think it is very interesting how people used to believe that stomach ulcers were caused by stress related issues. Up until today's class with the presentation of Barry Marshall I too thought that stomach ulcers were caused strees issues. Now knowing that stress is not the cause of stomach ulcers, but that a bacteria called Helicobacter pylori is will help scientists to further pursue an antibiotic to stop it. The responses people had to this video indicate that many have had this bacteria inside of them for all different ages. All of the people seem to have the same pains / symptoms from the bacteria. Atleast if someone is having these symptoms they can now have tests to see if they have the bacteria opposed to thinking it is a stress related issue.
I'm sure that most of us have heard the common idea that teenage pregnancy can be quite dangerous. While browsing Science Daily I came across an article discussing the serious health risks babies may be associated with if concieved by a teenager. Studies show that woman between the ages of 14- 17 are at high risk of giving preterm birth to a child. Ali Khashan, a student at University College in Cork, Ireland found that the "increased risk of poor pregnancy outcome is related to biological immaturity." This makes sense because a teenage girl is not fully developed or "ready" just yet to give birth. Her body is not as fully grown as it will be later in life. Khashan also found that the majority of teenage mothers were white, underweight, and living in socially deprived areas.
In my opinion, these results indicate that our nation needs to be accentuating the risks of teenage pregnancys to help put a stop to this. People need to be focusing more on teenage pregnancy prevention methods such as birth control, condoms, and abstinence. Not only are these young teenage woman selling themselves short of what opportunities they may have as a young adult, but they are also creating serious health risks to children.
What are your thoughts and opinions on these findings? To learn more you can check out following website! Hope everybodys having a great day!
Samantha Narick Ebrey
New research suggests that every individual insect is unique in its own way and possesses a personality. Recent studies have tested several different traits of insects including boldness, agressiveness, and explorativeness. In one particular experiment firefly bugs were individually placed in different situations and tested upon how they reacted to their surroundings. For instance, an individual firefly was placed under a covered vail and set in a lit up arena with 4 pretend firefly bugs created out of gum. Once researchers removed the cover, the insect was tested on how "many objects each firebug explored, how fast the bug moved, how long it took to reach the wall of the arena, and more." The results implied that some bugs, whom explored the area quickly, were more brave and agressive than others. The scientists believe that their findings go along with all other living organisms.
I personally found this to be very interesting because normally when we think of bugs we see them as being small creatures with no feelings. I believe that these findings prove that all living organisms have thoughts and feelings and that they are not simply just placed on this earth with an empty soul. My question to you is, do you buy into these findings? What are your opinions and thoughts?
I've placed a link to the following website below that states more information on the topic if anyones interested! Enjoy!:)
Samantha Narick Ebrey
Samantha Narick Ebrey
In high school I had a teacher who constantly reminded me and my fellow classmates that when creating a power point to use during a presentation there should be no more than three bullets going down and that each bullet should contain a max of five words. He called it the "3x5 rule" or something like that. Teachers in general constantly reminded me that the power point should only be used as an aid or an outline and that it was never the actual "presentation".
Attending college classes I realized that professors talked about so much more than they could ever fit on one slide. Most professors even make their power points available online which enables students to print them out and use them as guides to help take notes. However I do have one very stubborn professor who refuses to make his power points available through angel. His reasoning behind this? He claims that studies prove you learn more by actually writing things down and not just reading them off a piece of paper. I agree with this to some extent however I do wonder if that is always the case. While I cannot speak for everyone I do think it is difficult to comprehend everything a professor says when at the same time you're rushing to write down the definitions displayed on a huge screen. How much can actually writing things down verses simply reading them help you if in the process you miss a vital piece of information spoken aloud by your professor?
After briefly researching why we retain information better when we write it I found many studies to back that statement up. Another few things I learned from looking into it more is that while trying to multitask (take notes/ copy definitions and listen to the professor) I need to work on writing faster (like wayyy faster).
"Researchers Create Real Tractor Beam"
A childhood dream has become reality... at least on the small scale.
The idea of a tractor beam actually working is almost unbelievable, but its seems to make sense. Using temperature to control small particles is brilliant! In any case, I hope scientists will keep moving forward with this as it could become incredibly useful, although it may take years and years to make a working larger model.
I then decided that once I got home I would do some follow-up research on these little creatures.
"Chipmunk" is the "common name for any small squirrel-like rodent" according to "Chipmunk Facts" (below). The website mentions that chipmunks typically are spotted around "Canada, the United States Rocky Mountains, the Great Basin and parts of the upper Midwest," which makes me wonder, why are they in Pennsylvania? The article also mentions that they go into hibernation during the winter months and rely on the items that they have stored in their burrows. I want to conduct an experiment if anyone is willing to participate? I want to see when chipmunks are out and about most on campus and keep a tally of all the times we see a chipmunk. It would be very interesting to almost live like one for a day and see them in their natural habitat. I also want to keep this up during the winter to see if the amount of spottings decreases.
Well, I've heard/read things that say that today's sweetener of choice, aspartame, can be harmful to your health. Deadly even. With all those new "natural" artificial sweeteners like Truvia, Sun Crystals, etc. is it really worth the extra $3 per box? No, according to this Time Magazine article. It is true that previous artificial sweeteners, such as saccharin did link to cancer in different types of animals. Due to that research, the FDA banned it in 1969. However, there were other ways to get that no-calorie sweet fix. Splenda actually uses sucralose, another artificial sweetener. Both of these have been tested over 200 times by the FDA, so can we conclude they are both safe? I certainly hope so. My fridge is stocked with "diet" and "sugar-free" drinks.
According to a study done by psychologists, certain dance moves men perform make them more attractive to women. The head, neck, and chest area were cited as the more attractive points, as were "big movements," which were demonstrated with an animated doll flailing its arms and legs. They took a handful of men and hooked them up with a system of devices that would record their dance moves, which were then mapped and recreated onto a featureless animated mannequin. The different mannequins were then shown to women, who were asked to evaluate how handsome the men were based solely on their dance moves. The men's physical features, personalities, etc. were never revealed to the women.
I saw this on the televised news earlier, but here is the related news article from CBS. One thing they mentioned on the news segment, and not online, was that psychologists were relating the dance moves and how we interpret them to how animals attract mates with mating rituals. The wild gestures and large movements are similar to how some animals attract mates, or do their "mating dance." I thought it was an interesting relationship, but there was nothing to really back up this theory other than it seems plausible.
For fun, here's the video from their research showing what was deemed bad moves, and then good moves: Dancing 101. What do you guys think about this? Do you think that we subconsciously see someone who we interpret as a "good dancer," and find them more attractive because of it? I never really thought about it before, but I think it does make sense.
I've posted the link to the article. Also Dave Chapelle did a very funny skit about the so-called non- intoxicating marijuana so I posted that link too
Researchers have discovered an almost complete skeleton of a dinosaur that had puzzling features. For now, they are calling it Concavenator corcovatus. Scientists have come up with possible reasons for the hump such as: to seduce possible mates, maintain body heat, or even a storage of fat. They can't quite figure it out though.
On top of that, the dinosaur seems to have little spikes coming out of its forearm bones. This is very similar to those of chickens or any other bird. The spikes usually are from large wing feathers which tells us that the origin of the wings go even further back.
I think it's amazing how things are being discovered day in and day out. There are so many things that are yet to be figured out. The world is full of mysteries.
A long time ago there were many more smokers than there are today. It's bewildering that "back in the day" smoking was a common action taken several times during an ordinary day. Even teenagers smoked cigarettes with no problems!
It wasn't rare to watch shows on television where cigarettes and cigars were being lit up during conversation after a nice family dinner. Shows like "I love Lucy," "Grease," even Disney movies like "Alice in Wonderland" ...smoking was not and still is not rare to find in the movies.
My uncles always talk about how when they were 11 or 12 years old, they would walk down to the corner store to buy cigarettes for my grandfather and were given them with no problem. Now there are so many laws prohibiting anyone under 18 from purchasing cigarettes but what is forgotten is that the second hand smoke you inhale from smokers around you is just as bad as the smoke you would inhale if you were putting the cigarette into your lungs from your own hand.
Not to mention it doesn't help that by advertising smoking in movies, magazines, etc. producers are putting the wrong ideas into young teens minds. According to Julie Steenhuysen for Reuters, "Tobacco promotions and depictions of smoking in movies cause teens to start smoking..." This means the more young children see it on on television and movies, the more they start to think that smoking causes no harm. And what are we trying to teach to you adolescent minds? They are transitioning to next stages in life and are being shown that smoking is the cool thing to do. I became curious and asked my 7 year old cousin if he thought smoking was cool. His response to me was, "Well Crissy, they do it in the movies." Young kids are influenced by what they see and hear. How can we say, "Don't smoke, it's bad for you, as we are exhaling secondhand smoke right into their lungs at the same moment? If we want to teach future generations right from wrong, healthy versus unhealthy decisions we need to start with ourselves.
I can understand why in most cases the replicable qualities of objective science outshine the individual insights of practiced intentional exploration, but still, how does one gain conscious insight through objective-only examination? Our current process - outwards-in only - seems bass-ackwards. When (if ever) will we learn to reconcile objectivity with subjectivity in the sciences?
Today's class, especially the discussion about alternatives to smoking/safer practices, reminded me of one of my friends who likes to smoke "herbal" cigarettes. Cloves, or other herbal tobacco, claim to have less negative effects and less of an addictive additive. However, it seems to me that the ingredients that create problems in people (nicotene anyone!) are still evident. Do you think that smoking cloves would be a good alternative to cigarette smokers? Or do you think that it is just as harmful? I attached a few links if you're interested... it's really odd.
Nowadays,it is amost a common sense that smoking is bad for health. However, there are still lots of people smoking. I used to wonder why they still smoke even though they know they have risk of getting lung cancer. I have a very close friend who smoke since high school. I asked him, he said he knows that scientists said smoking is bad for health, but he don't believe that he will get lung cancer. He even gave me examples of historic celebraties who smoked a lot but still lived a long time.
His response remind me of what I have learned in my psychology class: behavior or belief, which come first? Psychologists did lots of experiences and it turned out that behavior and belief affect each other. People adapts their believes to appear consistants with their actions. So it is not easy to make smokers quit their smoking by just showing them scientific evidence. It is not convinsing enough for them.
I then decided that once I got home I would do some follow-up research on these little creatures.
"Chipmunk" is the "common name for any small squirrel-like rodent" according to "Chipmunk Facts" (below). The website mentions that chipmunks typically are spotted around "Canada, the United States Rocky Mountains, the Great Basin and parts of the upper Midwest," which makes me wonder, why are they in Pennsylvania? The article also mentions that they go into hibernation during the winter months and rely on the items that they have stored in their burrows. I want to conduct an experiment if anyone is willing to participate? I want to see when chipmunks are out and about most on campus and keep a tally of all the times we see a chipmunk. It would be very interesting to almost live like one for a day and see them in their natural habitat. I also want to keep this up during the winter to see if the amount of spottings decreases.
In class today I was contemplating the possibilities of another factor in the seemingly obvious, smoking causing lung cancer relationship. I aimlessly wondered upon the idea that maybe smoking does not cause cancer alone, but a gene does, however smoking interacting with these gene exacerbates some metabolic situation and this cause cancer. Ironically, you mentioned basically the same thing about how genes determine your traits and how maybe in the future you will be able to essentially tell your medical future. This also drew a question inside my head as to the certainty of any scientific research. While at times you may be absolutely convinced and invested in one belief, you may uncover things that completely change your point of view. Relating to the smoking discussion - prominent scientists of the last century arugest that smoking was not only not harmful, but could be beneficial. This is a polar opposite of what scientist and doctors know believe. Obviously, scientific evidence back than and procedures was not what is it today, but the future holds many un-imaginable breakthroughs, so how can we be sure we are right now. I guess that is why scientific humility is so important.
Also relating to the genetic testing discussion, I watched this very interesting lecture a couple months ago by bio-ethicist Gregory Stock discuses the morality involved in the decisions of the scientific future and how people should react to these advances. Here is the lecture;http://inhumanexperiment.blogspot.com/2009/04/biotechnology-and-future-of-aging.html
I found an article containing the answer, and some other interesting facts I wasn't aware of:
Dogs are routinely used by medical schools and laboratories in heart and lung research, transplantation experiments, cancer research, microbiology, genetics, orthopedics, surgery, and veterinary medicine. Dogs are also commonly used in toxicity studies to test the safety of human drugs, food additives, industrial chemicals, and other products.
Puppies, or dogs under one year of age, are frequently used in these experiments. The most common dogs used in laboratories are beagles, but not because scientists view them as the best 'models' for humans. Rather, beagles are convenient to use because they are docile and small, allowing for more animals to be housed and cared for using less space and money.
And there you have it, being man's best friend has made them a prime candidate for extensive scientific research. I ask....why not the cockroach? Or some other insect I have no emotional attachment too? Yes, I am biased for cute cuddly animals. But of course, I cannot deny that animal studies have helped progress things for humans...I just hope the puppies are having a nice time when they aren't smoking. :(
We all know the life threatening effects of smoking, The detrimental effects on lung tissue is very well documented along with the damage to the skin, liver, stomach, intestines... the list goes on. Cigarette smokers have manifested more variations of cancer than any other social group. Those of us who have family members and friends who smoke are likely to try and convince them to quit. We all know the risks, we want to help them stop.
It is a lot more likely for someone to say, "hey, you need to quit smoking, its killing you" than to say, "you are fat and eating like a pig, you need to exercise, its killing you." Food can be just as much of an addiction as cigarettes and turns into a lifestyle that is just as hard to quit. While telling someone they are fat, overweight, or obese is hard to do, it is a reality that the number of deaths caused by obesity are catching up with those of smoking related deaths. In fact, it is estimated that if obesity continues to rise 20% of all health care spending will be on obesity related diseases.
"According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) smoking in 2000 was the biggest cause of death - 435,000 people died. 18.1% of everyone who died in that year died of a smoking related disease." Obesity caused 400,000 deaths.
In class we said about 50% of the population smoke. Compare that to about 64% of Americans who are obese, meaning their BMI (body mass index) is over 30. A lot of non- smokers would agree that smoking is very bad for you, but these same people are most likey eating foods high in salt, saturated fat, trans fat, and refined sugars, which all contribute to overweight and obesity. Our culture does not condone ridiculing obesity, so this is the method of choice for those wishing to limit their life span without suffering the social ostracizing that accompanies smoking cigarettes.
But why does this only happen sometimes and the great athletes who have mastered this cannot describe exactly how to get to "the zone?"
This topic really intrigues me so I have been doing some research on . Sports psychology according to "www.dictionary.com" is: "a branch of psychology that researches mental factors in attainment of athletic skills and performance."
A book I am reading right now called "Mind Over Golf" written by Dr. Richard Coop (Biography=http://www.golflink.com/instructor/coop/bio.aspx) with Bill Fields and a foreword by Payne Stewart mentions that once you improve the mental side of your , that your scores will get better. This will give you the best chance to "get in the zone."
What are all of your opinions on mastering "the zone?" Does it require getting a sports psychologist? Can you achieve it consistently on your own through self-hypnosis (http://www.wikihow.com/Perform-Self-Hypnosis) or journaling about your mental state of mind during your sport? What is the answer?
Let me put this in perspective. In an article by Sarah N. Lynch in Time Magazine titled "An American Pastime: Smoking Pot," 42% of people surveyed in the United States had tried marijuana at least once. This statistic is about 32% lower than the percentage of prisoners that admitted to marijuana use. So if cigarette smokers are more likely to smoke marijuana, and prisoners are more likely to smoke marijuana, then this leads me to conclude that prisoners are more likely to be cigarette smokers.
Lady Gaga's glasses tell it all....those chains looks painful....
Ever since the notion that participating in crosswords and other mind-stimulating activities slows the process of alzeheimer's disease, I feel like everyone is trying to "lower their brain age" and keep their brain healthy. There are even IPhone apps dedicated to it (http://www.tomsguide.com/us/brain-age-exercise-iphone-ipod,news-4053.html). But the shocking news is that there is new evidence saying that it doesn't help very much in the long run. According to this article, the brain stimulation will help slow it down, but it ends up catching up to its natural progression. What do you think?
During class Dr. Read mentioned how our civilization is getting smarter and smarter throughout time. This seems like something that should definately be occuring over time, but why? How is it that your IQ is more than likely higher than those of your parents, and the chances are your children's IQ will be higher than yours?
This is a very intertesting topic that James Flynn makes an attempt at answering. In the December 2007 edition of the Intelligent Life Magazine, The Flynn Effect trys to explain how "IQ's are rising sharply from generation to generation." Flynn discovered that "white Americans had been steadily gaining about 3/10 of an IQ point a year for almost half a century" through a series of studies he conducted consisting of over 7000 people. He decided to further back his evidence with as many international, military studies as possible. He discovered a study called Raven's Progressive Matrices that was administered to 18 year old Dutch conscripts and also to their sons of later years. It was a simple test, very similar to a puzzle, but the sons of the first test subjects ended up scoring 18 points higher on average than their fathers. He also recieved another 13 sets of data, from various countries, that all helped support IQ gains.
This specifics of the data allowed him to come to the conclusion that we aren't technically smarter than our ancestors, but we learned to apply our intelligence to a new set of problems. This is due to the shifting social priorities. An example of this is how, in the 1900's, people were totally fine with starting work at a very young age and therefore did not recieve much education. This was the standard back then, where the mass population was not interested in intelligence as much as labor. Today though, the standard has rised quite a considerate amount to where a lot more people are highly interested in education and recieving a high paying job. The simple fact is, what we value gets stronger.
Suprisingly, this was actually my hypothesis on the subject. I was skeptical to the fact that people were just getting smarter. I believe that what you expect of yourself and what you truely believe is possible for you, what you value, is where your going to end up. People back then didnt have expectations like the people of today, their mental capacity was just the same, they just didnt know many possibilities past working in the industrial field. This is especially true since the majority began work at a very young age, therefore they had no time to really dream and "upgrade" their expectations and values. So, as many times as you've heard this before, dream big because anything is possible!
I believe it's holding back scientific advancements that would make us live better lives. Stem cell research is a popular topic that arises due to its ethical issues. If the government lived up to its separation of church and state, it would endorse researches to experiment with them. I'm not promoting abortion here but at least they could use the already-aborted for the cells. I'm not an expert but it could probably lead to cures for cancer. Maybe my uncle, who is suffering from Lou Gehrig's disease, would be able to see his one-month-old granddaughter go to college.
Or maybe it's best that the ethically strong continue to win over and not let science spin out of control, leading to George Orwell's 1984.
Who would have thought? It's like fighting fire with fire. Researchers have found that we can potentially use BACTERIA to fight off diseases. When harmful bacteria invade a body, they must work together as a team and communicate well with each, using Quorum Sensing, to efficiently infect a body. Well, they found that in Staphylococcus aureus infections, there were certain bacteria that were lacking in Quorum Sensing. There were several bacteria that only looked after themselves and did whatever was best to let them reproduce more. With time, the bacteria would quickly outnumber the other bacteria that are producing toxins. Therefore, the infection is significantly less harmful. Although this only a concept, it may indeed lead to cures.
I think we all know that football is a dangerous sport. The speed and size of today's players create much bigger and harder hits. While this might be pleasing to the fans, do we really know what these collisions are doing to the players?
Even recently, it has been brought up in the sporting news that what might appear to be a simple headache can be a threatening concussion. There is a vast amount of research about what multiple concussions can do to a person and how it will affect them for the rest of their life. This New York Times article does a great job laying out just a minimal amount of the findings there are in the science world about the dangers of head injuries sustained through playing football. Watching my brother go through this scares me, especially after reading this fact presented by the NFL and the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research: "Alzheimer's disease or similar memory-related diseases appear to have been diagnosed in the league's former players vastly more often than in the national population -- including a rate of 19 times the normal rate for men ages 30 through 49."
Even just a last year, Chris Henry of the Cincinnati Bengals died after a traumatic fall from a moving vehicle had chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) -- a form of degenerative brain damage caused by multiple hits to the head -- at the time of his death, according to scientists at the Brain Injury Research Institute, a research center affiliated with West Virginia University. (ESPN) CTE is an extremely serious issue and the only known cause if multiple violent hits to the head. It is unknown for sure if CTE was a reason why Henry died from the accident, but many scientists say there is direct causality. As shown in the image, CTE is an issue more people need to be worrying about.
There are many more issues that come up with this topic: Are the helmets currently being used effective enough? Are all of the new rules/penalties the NFL/NCAA implies really protecting the players? Should children be able to play football starting from the age as young as five and continue on through high school/college/pros? How many players get concussions but then never report them? Do players even know they have a concussion and not just a headache?
I will always love the sport of football and I want my brother to get the the highest level he can. But no one knows how long the affects of a concussion will live with you and I hope that someday there will be even better technology to protect everyone who plays the sport of football.
First of all, I decided to take this science course for a few
reasons. For one thing, I hadn't taken any science courses until this point in
college, so I wanted to get a few of the required science credits out of the
way (specifically because I'm not a huge fan of science in general). I decided
to pick this particular science class because the description made it sound
both easier and less dull, or more creative than other science classes that I
have taken in the past. They have always been very cut and dry, and mostly
consisted of being taught to memorize and regurgitate broad scientific facts
rather than exploring them from a more human and creative perspective, which is
what this class sounded like it was supposed to do.
There are also many reasons that I didn't choose to become a science major, some of which are mentioned above. As I said before, I never enjoyed the science classes I took in elementary, middle, and high school. It was always my least favorite subject for a few reasons, mostly because I never really liked the teachers on a personal level for some reason and because I didn't like the way the classes were taught. Also, I never really got into the subject matter of science much either. Sure, there were always some interesting facts to be found, but I was always more interested in fiction, language, creative writing and writing in general. To me, the things I have learned in most science classes have been like some of the things I've studied in metaphysical philosophy--kind of interesting but not applicable to me because it doesn't play any real role in my day-to-day life.
Today's class got the media-enthusiast side of me curious on the "age-old" testament of sex selling. It's a proven fact that sexuality and sex within the media naturally appeals to audiences (whether that is a positive or negative thing is a whole other topic!). So, when Andrew showed us the advertisments, especially the video, of the cigarettes, it made me wonder what sex could really sell. Everywhere, especially in science-related fields, there are "sexy" ads trying to sell products. The first thing I thought of was birth control ads and Viagra ads. Both of these products are made by scientists, products of the scientific fields, and they both sell phenomenally. But what is it that really sells these products? My theory is that the media and the premise of these products have made them sell successfully, not the actual science and statistics behind the product. Sure, the fact that they work is great, but would people buy birth control if they thought it wasn't sexy? Would "gray foxes" buy Viagra if they thought it wouldn't improve their sex appeal? Look at the ads and let me know!
It absolutely drives me crazy when I pass someone smoking and they toss their cigarette on the group when their done with it. Take a puff, exhale...take a puff, exhale...take a puff, throw it on the ground. Why is it that people who smoke feel the earth is their own personal ash tray? Even on campus - there are designated places to smoke and in those places there are trash cans to put the outted cigarette! So can someone explain to me...why throw it on the ground?! I don't want to drag your cancer causers in on my shoes!
It really is amazing how long it had taken from the start of the smoking craze until people finally figured out that it was harmful. Its crazy how we humans work. People wanted to smoke, so it becomes rationalized through what they would call "science".The human mind is a powerful thing. Sometimes we just believe what we want to hear. There are many examples in history of things people thought would be constructive, but ended up causing devastating harm. Like Agent Orange as a weapon, meant to just kill plants...but ends up harming so many people for years to come. Smoking is just meant to help you relax, but then does so much else to your body years later. The question is, what is going on now that we think is so useful but might bring devasation in years to come? I guess thats just the point. Nothing can ever be fool proof when it is first mainstreamed, but who knows what consequences will come from it. Guess we'll just have to wait and see!
But another thing, this article really is a great reminder of the help science has brought to us. Only 50-60 some years ago, people were still naive about smoking. And now we live in a society where we are aware of the facts! (Despite the fact that people continue to smoke, at least they are aware of what they're doing)
"Do worms affect a child's ability to learn or perform in school?"
This is the question we raised in class last week. Through a series of explanations and demonstrations of experiments to test this question, we came to the conclusion that worms do indeed have some sort of effect on the cognitive development and abilities of a child.
However, as I sat there in class and thought about it, more and more theories seemed to present themselves to me.
For instance, soon after we finished our discussion concerning the crawling invaders we took a pop quiz covering the medical impact of malnutrition or lack of nutrition in terms of moose developing arthritis. Now while the article we read for the quiz didn't exactly experiment with the possible effects of nutrition or lack thereof in early stages of life, it did briefly relate this possibility to human beings.
So as I sat there and thought some more one particular idea occurred to me: the worms that attack the immune system of a child could very well be the cause of malnutrition in a child's development. Now I raise a new question: Is the missing link between the worms and the child's ability to perform well in their studies the absence of necessary nutrition in a child's system?
To study this, I did a little research and I found this website:
Basically, this short article holds research examining the effect of a child's learning abilities in the absolute prime of their life, even going so far as to say that the effects could begin to occur prior to birth. Now, while it does speak specifically about the first two years of a child's life being the most vital in receiving this nutrition, it is quite clear that a child's nutrition will continue to be important in aspects of development.
Another question I couldn't help but ask is whether or not worms could be indirectly linked with arthritis, assuming that arthritis is actually caused by too few nutritional elements in a person's early stage of life.
However, as this question seemed to be a mere digression, I didn't particularly research it. So, until someone asks the same questions and does the appropriate research, I suppose it will just remain a theory. Although I can't help but wonder what scientists or even other people like me think about either or both of these theories.
The reason I'm not a science major is because science is too precise an art for me. As you can tell by my dysfunction with deadlines. Most things, actually, are too precise an art for me, but I've never been able to tolerate physics or chemistry. Anything past fig newtons and moles in hills is lost on me. I've always been a fan of biology, but even that tells me way more than I ever wanted to know about my body.
Honestly, it's tough for me to find any school subjects I'm interested in. It just so happens Science is wrapped up in the least attractive package for me, with bows of ticker tape and way too much math to ever be fun.
I am not planning to be a science major because I have never had an interest in science growing up, it really isn't my cup of tea. I find it a little boring at times, though I did really enjoy my environmental science class in high school. I am a psychology major and want to be an Educational Psychologist. I want to work with children and helping them in finding the correct ways to learn in their specific situations.
I chose not to be a science major because I never really enjoyed a science class throughout my high school education. I enjoyed learning about hereditary genes/traits in 8th grade and anatomy in 11th grade but I really disliked bio, chem, and physical science The math equations in chem were disastrous and annoying I also hated the memorization of the periodic tables I enjoyed anatomy, I liked learning about the different functions of the human body but I hated the memorization part of the course. Because I never had a motivating science teacher/course that is probably what lead me away from studying the subject. Although I find many things interesting I am happy that I am an English and PR major and I'm excited with exploring careers I can do within this field of study.
So I dropped out of the congregation and gravitated towards areas with a livelier debate -- literature, politics, philosophy -- and soon found myself in the liberal arts. Since arriving at Penn State, I have tip-toed lightly around the question of my general education science requirements, searching for those courses without the brand of "chemistry" of "biology." This semester, I finally stumbled upon an "-y" that caught my attention: controversy. A single word that calls into to question the certainty and authority that permeates each claim to "scientific" study in our enlightened civilization. A noun that threatens the very existence of the "expert." An opportunity to take care of three more credits (and maybe even learn something).
I am taking this course because one of my advisers in my major (Professional Golf Management) recommended the course because it is new and interesting.