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February 9th, 2022, 12:44
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
Nature has always been a great source of romantic inspiration.
O you're surely joking, right?
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Well, whatever turns you on, I suggest this one :
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February 9th, 2022, 13:26
Originally Posted by Eye View Post
O you're surely joking, right?
I don't always put a winky smiley when I'm being ironic, indeed.

But your humour is a different type, apparently.
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February 9th, 2022, 18:05
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
Nature has always been a great source of romantic inspiration.
Here it would be appropriate to link the video for Pink Floyd's Empty Spaces.

pbbuR who unfortunatelyhas posted that particular link already (in some thread he can't remember)
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February 9th, 2022, 19:47
Originally Posted by Eye View Post
Well, whatever turns you on, I suggest this one :
The term "turn on" or "to be turned on" is literally to be found as "anmachen" in the German language - both meaning switches and human intercourse.
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February 25th, 2022, 19:51
That's quite the weirdo (science.org, it's in Nature too but not free)

Largest bacterium ever discovered has an unexpectedly complex cell

Giant microbe from a mangrove could be a missing link between single-celled organisms and the cells that make up humans

By definition, microbes are supposed to be so small they can only be seen with a microscope. But a newly described bacterium living in Caribbean mangroves never got that memo (see video, above). Its threadlike single cell is visible to the naked eye, growing up to 2 centimeters—as long as a peanut—and 5000 times bigger than many other microbes. What’s more, this giant has a huge genome that’s not free floating inside the cell as in other bacteria, but is instead encased in a membrane, an innovation characteristic of much more complex cells, like those in the human body.

[. . .]
EDIT: seems like the quoted text is mutating and getting more complex too
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March 9th, 2022, 19:21


pibbuR whose favourite is the immedate value theorem.
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March 17th, 2022, 14:17
Here's a funny research application, propeller-less drones using ion propulsion. I had never heard of the idea before, not sure how I missed that.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGM4JXVB5FM

https://newatlas.com/drones/ion-prop…-technologies/

Another project, with a plane this time: https://arstechnica.com/science/2018…-moving-parts/

I'm somewhat skeptical about the autonomy and the fact it will have to rely on batteries (because they require rare materials), but it's an awesome propulsion concept.

PS: I still prefer the smell of avgas and the sound of some propeller engines like the Merlin or any turboprop, but who wouldn't?
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March 31st, 2022, 23:57
Eew. . .
Robot made of magnetic slime could grab objects inside your body
Slime that can be controlled by a magnetic field can navigate tight spaces and grasp objects, making it ideal for possible uses inside the body
[. . .]
Li Zhang at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and his colleagues mixed neodymium magnet particles with borax, a common household detergent, and polyvinyl alcohol, a kind of resin, to form a slime that can be controlled
Source: New Scientist

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April 28th, 2022, 10:17
Interesting thought but I'm not convinced, it raises too many questions.

All of the bases in DNA and RNA have now been found in meteorites

The discovery adds to evidence that suggests life’s precursors came from space

More of the ingredients for life have been found in meteorites.

Space rocks that fell to Earth within the last century contain the five bases that store information in DNA and RNA, scientists report April 26 in Nature Communications.

These “nucleobases” — adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine and uracil — combine with sugars and phosphates to make up the genetic code of all life on Earth. Whether these basic ingredients for life first came from space or instead formed in a warm soup of earthly chemistry is still not known (SN: 9/24/20). But the discovery adds to evidence that suggests life’s precursors originally came from space, the researchers say.

Scientists have detected bits of adenine, guanine and other organic compounds in meteorites since the 1960s (SN: 8/10/11, SN: 12/4/20). Researchers have also seen hints of uracil, but cytosine and thymine remained elusive, until now.

“We’ve completed the set of all the bases found in DNA and RNA and life on Earth, and they’re present in meteorites,” says astrochemist Daniel Glavin of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

[. . .]
Since those nucleobases are fragile, I don't see how they'd resist the heat when the meteorite descends through atmosphere. Nor how they'd resist to radiations in space after being exposed for so many years.

Then who knows what happens with the force of impact when they hit the surface.

It would be more convincing if they gathered similar data from a meteorite on the Moon surface when they get back there. At least it would make any risk of earlier contamination much lower.

The thought of it is exciting though.

That seems to be in conflict with the RNA world hypothesis, too, at least on Earth.
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April 28th, 2022, 12:05
Maybe these nucleobases are just everywhere in the universe. Every new planet that has been formed, has them already, just as every meteorite.
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April 28th, 2022, 14:50
Maybe. I've found that NASA had reproduced C, T and U from pyrimidine in conditions that are similar to space. This would answer the question of resistance of some of the nucleobases in harsh conditions: maybe they were regenerated from that molecule instead.

ref: https://www.nasa.gov/content/nasa-am…-in-laboratory

Since it's widely available, perhaps it makes sense its derivatives were used as building blocks by organisms.

A is widely available too, but is that because there are already organisms? I don't know about G.
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May 13th, 2022, 10:06
It is Friday the 13th.
Apparently Friday has a bigger chance of being the thirteenth than any other day of the week, that is what I learned from a Dutch newspaper.
In the spoiler you can find the calculation, translated using Google Translate.
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May 13th, 2022, 10:25
That's surprising!

Probability is counter-intuitive, sometimes (the birthday paradox, for instance). But nothing complicated here then, it's just how the calendar was set vs days of the week? Still, quite unexpected.
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May 22nd, 2022, 11:23
The Closest We Have to a Theory of Everything:

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May 22nd, 2022, 18:03
Originally Posted by HiddenX View Post
The Closest We Have to a Theory of Everything:
At first when I saw the equation, I thought she was proposing to stop the entropy from growing.

That's an interesting point of view that I've never seen before. She seems good at taking a different perspective on a known theory.

The "how does it know about the future?" is a bit of a bait that illustrates that perfectly, it's very well done. I remember another similar question which asked how the time knew that it had to flow in the positive direction, in physical equations involving time.

PS: I have a trickier one: why, when we look ourselves in a mirror, is our left & right parts of our body inverted, and not the top / bottom parts?
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May 22nd, 2022, 18:21
Sabine Hossenfelder can explain complicated topics with less words - I like her videos.
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May 23rd, 2022, 12:02
I wish people were able to explain math without math terms.
The only book with which I really learned to understand math was "Mathe & PC", the predecessor to "Mathe Macciato", illustrated by Werner 'Tiki' Küstenmacher.
Apart from that, I never saw any book that could explain math to me. Which is very likely because I have a totally alien way of understanding math because of my Dyscalculia.

I wish Math professors were trying to explain Math to people with Dyscalculia.

( Hey, and I don't mean videos ! )
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May 23rd, 2022, 12:55
Alaska : Natives building up a monitor system against toxic algae (in German language) : https://www.spektrum.de/news/oekolog…alaska/2015275

Short version in English language : https://www.scientificamerican.com/a…ould-kill-you/
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May 25th, 2022, 10:37
Possibly History and Sociology : The "Caminho de Peabiru" : https://www.bbc.com/travel/article/2…n-ancient-path

More History : Photos found hidden behind cupboard : https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-…ester-61425923
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May 27th, 2022, 12:44
History : The Colonist Thomas Morton and his Merrymount at Quincy by Wollaston

Quote from there :

Morton's The New English Canaan has been described as "an important work of early American environmental writing",[12] as well as the first book banned in America.[1][6]
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