Get a glimpse of Family Science Days

Kids and parents flocked to Family Science Days over the weekend for hands-on science learning experiences. Children of all ages shook hands with robots and peered through high-powered microscopes.

The free exhibit with loads of activities highlighted the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual meeting in Chicago.  Chicago area museums, Argonne National Laboratory and the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory hooked kids on science at a menagerie of booths.

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Competing goals of international scientific collaboration

What started out as a talk discussing scientific research as a tool for strengthening international relations ended in a heated debate about more selfish motives that sometimes lurk beneath a shiny, humanitarian facade.

“Fortunately, the room is well-cooled,” said Philemon Mjwara, of the South Africa Department of Science and Technology, Republic of Africa. Continue reading “Competing goals of international scientific collaboration”

Picasso under the microscope—conference gives kids a closer look at art on the nanoscale

Scientists at the Argonne  National Laboratory examined Pablo Picasso's "Still Life with Three Fish, Moray Eel and Lime on White Ground" with X-rays to make a chemical fingerprint of the artist's works.
Scientists at the Argonne National Laboratory examined Pablo Picasso’s “Still Life with Three Fish, Moray Eel and Lime on White Ground” with X-rays to make a chemical fingerprint of the artist’s works.

CHICAGO—Upstairs in the Hyatt Regency, researchers unveiled their latest findings to thousands of scientists from all over the world. Downstairs, the audience was, well—smaller.
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Researchers finding new ways to explore the human brain

You don’t have to count them. There were about 100,000 peer-reviewed papers about the brain published last year, according to Henry Markram.

“The amount of data that we’re generating about the brain is rising at an incredible rate,” said Markram, coordinator of The Human Brain Project at EPFL,the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland. There, researchers are developing new methods to understanding how the brain operates. Continue reading “Researchers finding new ways to explore the human brain”

‘Humanity’s gamble’ of feeding growing populations

Biologist Paul Ehrlich warned that overpopulation would lead to mass starvation in his landmark 1968 book, The Population Bomb.

More than 45 years later, Ehrlich and other experts repeated the warning with increased urgency as climate change escalates threats to food production. Ehrlich calls for increased empowerment and education for women, giving them the ability to choose smaller families and control population, as one solution. Continue reading “‘Humanity’s gamble’ of feeding growing populations”