science

What makes the new study interesting is that it proves that human ancestors were capable of developing such technological advancements even before the advent of modern humans. Not only did Neanderthals use stone tools, though, but they also adapted their body plans over many generations, adopting traits ranging from a squat to an even more slender shape. This is not the first time that modern humans have been shown to develop such techniques; archaeologists discovered the remains of Neanderthals that show evidence of these traits during the construction of a building using stone. Yet what makes this study different is that scientists can reconstruct the movements of Neanderthals and test their ability to kill or eat animals. As an extra source of evidence, the authors also measured the teeth of hundreds of Neanderthal skulls they examined and compared them to humans. And, surprisingly, the authors found that their skeletal features were quite distinct from modern humans.

Credit: Anand K. Singh, H.P. Soodyall, and R. J. Lohse, 2016. Neanderthal body plans show distinct variation across Europe and east Asia. Paleoanthropology 34:1127.

Study Details and Abstract

The Altai Mountains of central Asia are an important site for deciphering Late Pleistocene human anatomical data . Neanderthals may have occupied the mountains as far as the end of the Holocene, or as early as 20,000 years ago. Here we present a series of geochemical, isotopic and anthropometric analyses of human bone from both the Altai and nearby Altai-Altai Massif in northeast China, the highest mountain range in Europe. The skeletal data come from individuals dated to 0.54 to 0.79 ka, from a range of geographical locations on both the Altai and Altai-Altai Massif. It was found that the Altai-Altai Massif consists of different parts of the Altai, with a central part with little archaeological or fossil support. Instead, we find that the Altai-Altai Massif is essentially a mosaic of multiple parts of the Altai. This mosaic of different parts is very different from what we found in the Altai Mountains. In particular, we find the following: a north-south spine at an elevation of 2170 m, as opposed to the Altai-Altai Massif which is at approximately 2100 to 2300 m elevation, and a west-east spine at an elevation of 2170-2210 m, as opposed to 3100-3400 on the Altai-Altai Massif. These results suggest that there is a much greater spatial variation in Neandertal features than previously suggested, and that they were able to adapt to different climatic environments and geographic locations. In short, there is potential to find Neandertals today as late as 4000-4050 m, as well as from 6000-6000 years ago in these parts of European Eurasia. This is the first time that skeletal results from modern humans have been analyzed at the Altai Mountains.

Source: https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2016/05/21/14692511210.full.pdf+html#page=60

Conclusion In short, there is likely a lot left on the table . I’m not so convinced that any group of humans went into southern Europe to create a new civilization, but I have no reason to believe that other groups didn’t try. I believe that Neanderthals would have had the ability to thrive in Europe even before humans arrived. Maybe not the entire continent, but any part of the continent. I don’t think that the Altai area is unique. I still believe that we lived on that continent millions of years earlier than archaeologists think.

Sources: http://www.paleoanthropology.org/2015/03/16/as-neanderthal-body-plan-reappears-in-nations-across-europe-after-40000-years/ http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2016/04/14/1615111512.full.pdf+html#page=40

Posted by Rafiq Ahmed at 9:14 PM

There were many more such accounts, but for the purposes of this post I do not want to repeat what I am going to say in them. In particular, I want to address the following specific case:

  • When a woman was approached at a club by two young men, only to learn that one of them was white and the other Latin/other. This is an example of (1) repetition of an old-boys’ network and (2) a white woman in a social setting being attacked and degraded, especially by a woman of color. The problem with both instances was not just the fact that the attackers were white, but that the women were Latin/other. Of course, the same is true for countless other incidents, though it is usually much harder to document at the crime scene because the victims are not necessarily of the same ethnicity or background. In the present example, for example, I will not be discussing the fact that one of the two white-to-Latino men may be in Canada and the other in Mexico or of a different country. However, these two men were both white-to-Latino. Thus, the fact that one of them was Canadian has zero impact on the facts. Because of that, I have chosen to present the incidents in this manner. In all cases where the women are black or Latina, however, there is not a plausible reason for those who attack, degrade and assault her. And, the reason why no rational person would claim that the attacks are due to the absence of white men. There is not that much of a difference. In all of these cases, women’s behavior is not dictated by racism, although it certainly may be influenced by prejudiceespecially for those who live in predominately white countries. Instead, the reason is usually simple: Women generally do not use their identities or their ethnicity as a weapon to make themselves feel better; rather, they simply feel comfortable in their own skin. I have been able to obtain proof of this by conducting an exhaustive empirical study on some groups of women living in a particular city in Asia. I discovered that the women who are most physically aggressive and are more verbally aggressive in their interactions are the ones I have listed above. In other words, an angry woman is likely angry simply from feeling insecure. Yet, in a culture where women don’t feel safe and safe is not taken as an indicator of strength, many women are willing to “fight for their rights.” These women are not necessarily dangerous, but they are willing to be dangerous and will use their identities as a weapon in order to take their feelings of inadequacy and anger out on other people. Thus, what actually seems to increase violence is not a lack of white males, but a lack of white men willing to fight for their rights.

Let’s start by saying that I support the desire for racial equality in many places, in part because I believe that the best place to promote equality is by showing non-white people that non-white people can be victimized just like they are. However, let’s assume that I am wrong (I’m not), and that the majority of violent actions of women occur because white men are too afraid to use their identities (for whatever reason) as a weapon. However, let’s not rule out that there may be some situations where women are being physically attacked for reasons related to their race, which, as stated above, I advocate. Since it is possible that women are racially assaulted because white men feel afraid to use their identities in this situation, can we consider a few potential reasons:

  • Because some men do not want to be identified as the “good” men?

  • Because they are intimidated by the threat of being judged? (ie “It’s not that I don’t want to be accepted, it’s that if I am, I can’t say so? I’m a minority and people will judge me.”)

  • Because their identity may be abused by others? (ie “There’s more than one way to be a good person. Don’t we all have to be perfect?”)

  • It’s a culture where violence is still tolerated? (ie “It’s been that way for over two centuries and there are no easy solutions.”)

Most likely, only one of the last three will come into play. In that scenario, only one of the reasons listed above will happen. And, even then, for the majority of White People who are not violent criminals, the reason is not a refusal to embrace other people as they are, so they feel intimidated of their identity and do not use it as a weapon. There isn’t a whole lot of that here, and if the majority of men who use their identities for violence are actually afraid to do so, then this culture also has other reasons associated with it. Therefore, in my opinion, the real question is simply: How much would it cost to change the culture in order to change violence? If most men in the United States are actually afraid to use their identities in

“Nano-Structure-DNA-RNA Engineering,” EPL Proceedings 2015. The first step for the polymer scaffolds to enter the living cell was to create a very small sample of the polymer solution and shape it, as shown in the image above. From this point, a 3D structure is created, based on the image of the nanocompensation matrix. This structure is then brought to the nucleus of the cell and guided to guide the DNA template into the cell membrane. This is accomplished in a 3D liquid membrane with porous pores allowing for a sufficient amount of DNA to pass through into the living cell. The resulting scaffold is formed and controlled as desired to deliver RNA to the DNA template. Once inside the cell, the “nano-structure-dna-RNA” is guided to the correct location (DNA) in the correct cell structure. This is repeated several times by the process. After the DNA template is delivered, the cells need to “feed” on it for the polymer scaffold to stay in place. Once more, the polymer is guided to continue its path in the cell. After enough nano-structure have been incorporated into the DNA template, the cells turn off the stimulation and growth occurs in a matter of seconds. “The bioengineering approach which we employed has potential to be applied in the clinical field,” says study authors Matthias Kster and Wolfgang Koch.

Koch and Kster’s research was lead by Wolfgang Schonfelber of the University of Wrzburg’s Biomaterials Science laboratory. The researchers tested their new polymer/nano-structure-dna-RNA combination on a cell line of pig cells. They showed that these engineered vesicles can enter into a cell in two main ways. The first is by their self-assembly into a vesicle within the cell membrane. When introduced into a cell, the vesicle itself undergoes self-assembly, which involves the incorporation of nanoscale grains and self-assembling. In other words, the DNA template is brought to the vesicle via the RNA that is guiding the vesicle through a liquid membrane to the cell. Interestingly, the vesicles that can get in through the vesicle membrane have the potential to contain significant amounts of DNA because of some pores present. While creating three-dimensional structures in the membrane, nanospheres of the polymer also get inserted. This is because the vesicles themselves are highly porous. “Because the membrane has pores, the vesicles undergo polymer growth,” explained Kster. This means that when the vesicles are introduced into the cell, they grow into structures that have potential to carry huge amounts of the DNA template. So where does this leave the human cells? “There are already very promising designs for DNA nanobots,” said Koch. “It’s clear from the studies that these nanobots will have a strong place in human tissues and organs.” Kster and Koch are currently working on a “functionalized” DNA nanobot that they think could be a possible replacement for current techniques in cancer treatment. There’s also great interest in the use of DNA nanobots for medical applications. They could be useful in cancer research, for example for the repair of genetic errors, cancer diagnostics and testing and more.

(via E-Life magazine)

More News from around the Web:

(I think SpaceX’s manifest now looks promising enough that if it has a $1.5 billion flight backlog it will not spend any more money than it already does. But it still needs to secure additional funding. As of the day I wrote this at 8am EDT on 29 January, SpaceX had $1.2 billion in pre-certificates on its credit card.)

SpaceX on track to launch astronauts first.. (I think SpaceX’s manifest now looks promising enough that if it has a $1.5 billion flight backlog it will not spend any more money than it already does. But it still needs to secure additional funding. As of the day I wrote this at 8am EDT on 29 January, SpaceX had $1.2 billion in pre-certificates on its credit card.)

On that final score, which I agree is difficult to judge unless SpaceX decides to put the brakes on its plan to fly astronauts from the pad within 3-4 months, the following should be remembered:

1) The Falcon Heavy rocket is not a clean sheet; it has several important features that together make it hard to classify as a new or low cost rocket. They include:

1) The Falcon Heavy has been designed and built (as a demonstration or production model) for a commercial service. All that remains to be done is to certify it for commercial flight after launch. This is a much more complex thing, than certification for flight and has much wider application. As it stands, Falcon Heavy is being flown primarily to test ground hardware which will be a long time before it can be certified for commercial launch. 2) The Falcon Heavy has a reusable upper stage for its flight to LEO (at a price of $85-$100 million and 20% margin) rather than a reusable upper stage for a launch. This will reduce the cost per flight. Again, a large part of SpaceX’s price reduction in its “reusable” upper stage is due to its choice to use a full first stage to reduce the cost of the second stage and its return to Earth as easily as possible. Both these ideas will lead to significant savings for SpaceX in their pricing of the Falcon Heavy and their profit margins in its first stage.

I expect both of these features to make the Falcon Heavy affordable, much more affordable, than before (and then some). But I do not know if Falcon Heavy is a new high cost rocket. A lot of it will depend on if it is possible (but not likely) to retrofit the Block 5 and Block 5’s Merlin engines later.

2) SpaceX is building a large rocket and its first operational vehicle, Falcon Heavy. This is a much larger cost, than a Block-5 and Block-5. It is too big, expensive to fly, and not flexible enough to be modified for use by other company’s programs. As such, it has to be as big or bigger than the Block-3’s Merlin.

3) If Elon Musk successfully does some of these things, he should probably be able to find some way to fly Falcon Heavy as the first (and most expensive) segment of a large, multiple stage rocket system, which is similar to the Space Shuttle. He should also be able to find some way to fly it as the first segment of a larger rocket (such as a LEO satellite) or an all solar electric spacecraft (which could use an integrated Falcon-Heavy upper stage).

The answer to the “Who will fly it?” question is obvious. While the majority of the Space Shuttle was re-used by multiple companies it was not able to survive on its own while carrying the passengers it was intended to carry. If SpaceX could re-use the Falcon Heavy and recover it, it could serve as a demonstration of the reusable Falcon-Newton approach. It also gives SpaceX a chance to show off one of its other advanced technologies like an extended life booster for Mars. It would also provide opportunity to demonstrate a “first in space” experience in terms of using the Falcon Heavy to launch commercial satellites and/or Mars landings.

It is possible that the Falcon Heavy and its first two flights will be paid by the various government programs that SpaceX will be working with on this project. But those programs are getting many new programs on the launch bandwagon. After all, the first flight of the Space Shuttle was a NASA program. So, should the government pay the costs for a Falcon Heavy? Or should those costs be paid on some other basis? Or can SpaceX actually find a way to get these new programs on board? Either way, I suspect the decision should be made soon.

He also says that there could be some kind of connection. It’s not only a theoretical possibility, and not entirely implausible either. There’s also some reason I’ve included the above quote in my post on Dark Matter, it explains my frustration:

Herman: “We are now being led to the conclusion that this is not a one-way street. It will take some people to take the first steps to discover what is going on but it will be just those very first steps that ultimately make the discovery. However there will be others around the globe.”

What does the phrase “others around the globe” refer to? I would say it means the large majority of the population of the world. Think of it this way: the whole science fiction and movie industry is made up of people in the developed nations. These “others around the world” include people whose whole existence revolves around these fields. It would be a lot harder for them to come forward and say that they have scientific information of this world. So we’re about to see, because of Black Holes, that many people will be the ones taking the first steps and discovering that in the future black holes may not have energy, they may not be all those things that the scientists think.

Posted by Alex Griswold at 10:05 PM

And since black holes are so dark, there is no light at all to shine on them.

What makes this even more amazing is that the density of a black hole is actually quite tiny compared to its size and distance from the ground, and it can’t be detected with ground-based telescopes until it is so far away it falls into the electromagnetic and gravitational fields of our Solar System and can only be accurately observed by NASA’s Kepler space telescope. All other data points have been made by astrophysicists.

To add to the intrigue, we must also note that there are approximately 10,000 galaxies that lie just on the plane of the Milky Way, as opposed to the 90,000 galaxies that are actually on the edge of the Milky Way like this dwarf black hole, although we shall not name them here because their location, distances and other variables make them difficult to identify.

What all this means is that the star that we are looking for (our Sun as seen from here) is actually well hidden in the dark space that surrounds the Milky Way , meaning we can only see it by spotting other stars in this area of the sky. And as for how far away it is, well, it is well within the “edge of the Milky Way .”

I won’t be able to provide a more detailed description of this star with the spacecraft that we have, but I will write a summary of what you need to know after you have seen the star. In addition, there are some additional pictures I made at this telescope and posted here as a Google Drive file with my comments. I was able to get a good image of this nebula without the Hubble Space Telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys on, so I was able to use my telescope with other resources. I think you’ll be surprised by how much detail you can see with your eyes while staring at the night sky. It’s really pretty.

We can say for sure from now on that this image has NOT been “borrowed” from here and that this is a Hubble image of this star. I was able to use my telescope without any other telescope-use on November 16, 2008 with the Hubble Space Telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys. I really hope you don’t believe me when I say this, but that is how it actually happened. If you know of others, please do not hesitate to contact me; it does happen to me all the time and it will probably happen again soon . Thanks.

“To our knowledge this is the first new method to inhibit the atherosclerotic process,” said Prof. Xiaobo Sun at Stanford. (full story here ) The researchers, all researchers specializing in the areas of nanomedicine and nanotechnology, used a combination of 3D printing, semiconductor nanostructures, and high-performing polymers to create the nanoparticles. The material resembles the inner workings of the heart. The nanoparticle, said the team, can “stop the flow of materials to the heart from within, thereby removing the plaques that cause atherosclerosis”. I cannot speak for the long-term safety of the new nanoparticle, but there is still some way to go. A preliminary study has shown a possible method by which other small particles could be created from that nanoparticle. Prof Sun said, “If all we have done are the new and small particles, we will have a limited impact” in stopping the atherosclerotic process, but more research would provide better targeting of the nanoparticles. Even if the technology has potential to slow the progression of heart attacks due to plaque buildup, we still need to evaluate both the safety and effectiveness of this technology and more research. If the research proves successful, expect more devices such as pacemakers that use this technology. I am sure our next round of research will come in the form of smaller pacemakers capable of more precise controlling of the heart, as well as devices that use the material to do cancer treatment and immunotherapy.

In Conclusion:

You can see some of the other research studies related to this topic here and here . I think the potential for nanoparticles that actually do what they’re designed to do is pretty great. I’m pretty sure that we will continue to see that technology continue to advance at a rapid pace.

I will finish this blog post by posting a short video that explains the material better than I can, so click the link for video .

Check back for more coverage of this innovative technology.

, , 2, 3, ., , 3,

In another article, it is shown that each of the four species has unique features used by their predators to confuse them. To help identify the specific features used by their predators, the researchers have created an artificial artificial eyes that they call EYE-BIN which is a combination of a miniature camera (10 x 20 mm. on a plate) with a 1D and 5D image processing system. 3, , 1, 5, 6, 14, 5, 6, 5, 6, 4, 3, 3, 10, , 1, 17, 3, 23, 12, 12, 11, 11, 7, , , 11, 7, 4, 5, 4, 13, 2, 14, 6, 3 (Numerical description omitted to the extent permitted by Law).

This means that these ants can learn to recognize face recognition among their peers. The researchers say that this ability (somewhat similar to that of some parrots) could be advantageous in the field of social insects due to their ability to work together.

The results of the study, published in arXiv, are now in the Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society B.

You can also visit a blog which was the first in this series.

The winning name will be decided at a June 8 ceremony at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. If the public vote is taken, the winning name will be announced June 24 and will appear on the space agency’s official website.

NASA and the nonprofit space advocacy organization BeyondSpace. The winning entry is “Matter-Antimatter”, which, for simplicity’s sake, is defined as the particles of matter and the other particles of energy.

That’s not very satisfying, huh?

With the naming contest, NASA hopes that the public will learn something about what it is like to become a space ambassador, what it is like to live on the red planet, what it is like for a family to travel and live for a time in orbit, and why the mission is important to all of us.

“NASA’s mission to discover and explore Mars is a part of ongoing global efforts to understand, predict and predict what’s coming in the future,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden in a statement. “For NASA, joining Mars as the most recent destination is a good test run and also helps us understand what we learn from doing these missions – about ourselves and other worlds.”

Why on Mars? Because it’s there. The most recent plan was to land humans on Mars in the 2030s, but it’s still some time away, and the crew will still need to live up to the goals of the missions it’s sending them to, even while they’re there.

The rover, named Curiosity, will reach the surface of Mars on July 5, 2018. The rover is due to deliver samples of rocks and soil to the laboratory of planetary scientist Jim Erickson of NASA Goddard. The mission should take one year to complete.

It’s always been a dream of mine to fly to Mars, which is why my grandmother took me down to Georgia in a converted Model T Ford with her just a few years ago.

“You know how I know this is right for my granddaughter?” my grandmother said. “Because if we’re sending our children to Mars, they deserve to find out where we’ve gone and why.”

But while it has been a success story, its biggest contribution was the finding of infrared light, so important to all stars and other galaxies.

In 1989, the Keck telescope, right behind Spitzer in the telescope’s field of view, revealed the faintest and longest, most distant image it obtained of distant regions of the night sky: the Great Andromeda galaxy. This was the first image of our home galaxy taken by a telescope this distant (the entire visible sky, for that matter, is so far).

Since then we have obtained an astonishing 1.33 billion photographs of the Milky Way, and this last month we received the most detailed view of the universe’s invisible glow ever created from a telescope, a billion-degree view of the universe (with only the Hubble Space Telescope the equivalent of a billion light years away).

But why, then, does the Hubble Space Telescope focus on distant galaxies, rather than those that surround us? Because these are the first galaxies to appear; we have seen no other forms of matter or life on worlds distant from Earth. And those that do exist are so far from us that no telescope for observation has been built to look beyond 5 or 6 degrees.

Now we know that the galaxies farthest from us are as massive as the Sun (and far more so than the Milky Way), and that planets beyond our solar system exist in galaxies about 100 times farther away. Those that aren’t are so huge that they cannot be seen. But does that make the entire Universe invisible, as some (but not all) scientists assert? Actually, no. On the contrary, in principle, it may mean that there is nothing visible at all! This is the basic idea behind the concept of dark energy, also called the “cosmic vacuum.” The principle is that the space beyond ordinary space is more empty, and that there is some other space, a “dark energy layer.”

Thus, rather than using any form of direct observation to expand the Universe beyond its current bounds, our telescopes are being used to see what is there from all directions. In all the light we have sent back since the time of Spitzer, only a tiny fraction has been absorbed. This dark energy is invisible to all of us, and in that respect it is true that we are observing a microscopic universe (of only one trillionth the width of a human hair), but there are thousands of billions of galaxies out there.

Now the most important feature of all these observations is the discovery of very strong signals in the microwave portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, showing clearly for the first time that the Universe contains a powerful mechanism for making gravity itself. The theory and technology that produced these signals, known as the “Cosmic Microwave Background,” means that we can now use our instruments to look inside a million and a half million years ago when the cosmos was less than 10 percent more than it is now.

We can look so far into the past, for so much more time, and observe such an immense and complex cosmic web of galaxies, that we can’t even begin to estimate what it might have been like to live in the very early stages of the Universe. And so the image produced by the Spitzer infrared data is no longer merely an unending line of galaxies beyond a billion light years away. It is a snapshot of what might have been, a hint of what may yet be!

And while there is no evidence for an earlier “Cosmic Big Bang,” many scholars have proposed alternatives that do. Such as the theory of inflation, which predicts that huge expanses of empty space may have expanded in the Universe in a recent period of time. They would then have been pushed apart – a theory known as “Dark Matter.” While nothing is quite proven, it is interesting to note that the earliest stars are very far away, and that the earliest galaxies are not yet seen.

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