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Started by Bleu11 on May 20, 2015 8:36:59 PM
Science - News & Comment


Bleu11 - 20 May 2015 20:37:31 (#1 of 5179)

[W]hile exploring arid badlands near the western shore of Lake Turkana in Kenya, a team of archaeologists took a wrong turn and made a big discovery about early human technology: Our hominin ancestors were making stone tools 3.3 million years ago, some 700,000 years earlier than previously thought.

Eric Delson, a paleoanthropologist at Lehman College of the City University of New York and a researcher at the American Museum of Natural History, noted that once in a generation, the age of humanity’s first known use of tools increases significantly. “Harmand’s find is the longest jump back in time, nearly three quarters of a million years, to a period when the only known hominin fossils belong to Australopithecus,” the genus most famously represented by the “Lucy” skeleton and found throughout East Africa.

FredDee - 22 May 2015 12:24:49 (#2 of 5179)

a spacecraft 'sailing on sunbeams' :

Pentecost - 22 May 2015 17:46:04 (#3 of 5179)

Isn't there more to the Solar Wind than just photons, though?

tasselhoff - 22 May 2015 21:35:31 (#4 of 5179)

Dunno, but it's a very cool name.

Pentecost - 22 May 2015 21:38:45 (#5 of 5179)

All the ejecta from sunspots and bursts and stuff: loads of alpha particles for one thing. Is't it ions - as in charged massive particles - that fuck with the earth's mag field to give us both aurora and disrupted satellites? These are not just photons. (said in a ben kenobi voice)

FredDee - 23 May 2015 11:00:01 (#6 of 5179)

'Rosetts Stone' found for prostate cancer drugs :

LegalEyesAsh - 23 May 2015 13:03:22 (#7 of 5179)

The sailing on sunbeams spacecraft, if I understand this properly (happy to be corrected), the first launch isn't going to sail on just sunbeams, as it'll be in a low Earth orbit, so might also catch wisps of atmosphere.

Very much like the concept, though I question its viability should a large surface area of sail encounter micrometeorites, dust etc, in space proper.

Bleu11 - 23 May 2015 15:56:27 (#8 of 5179)

I wonder about it too. There was an AC Clarke novel that explored this idea. Can't remember which one.

Bleu11 - 23 May 2015 16:09:59 (#9 of 5179)

We are not bad. It is our genes.

LegalEyesAsh - 23 May 2015 19:13:20 (#10 of 5179)

Sunjammer, Bleu.

LegalEyesAsh - 23 May 2015 19:20:30 (#11 of 5179)

#9, interesting as it confirms the variations in behaviour we've all experienced and observed in others throughout our lives.

It may not be so pleasant for those affected to think there could one day be a medical cure for infidelity, but until then I'm sure we'll manage.

upgoerfive - 24 May 2015 15:41:05 (#12 of 5179)

John Nash has died in a car crash.

Bleu11 - 24 May 2015 15:51:40 (#13 of 5179)

He was taking a taxi from the airport after the trip to receive the Abel prize. Quite tragic.

Anchorman - 24 May 2015 18:35:19 (#14 of 5179)

veery sorry to hear of the loss of a genius

Isolde - 26 May 2015 04:04:18 (#15 of 5179)

Terrible tragedy.

But I came here to post this - here's a new genius. IQ greater than Albert Einstein.

“In Jacob’s life there were quite a few people who had given up on him,” Kristine said.“The school came up to me and told me that he would never need his alphabet cards because he would never learn to read.”

MrNatural - 27 May 2015 02:43:48 (#16 of 5179)

University of Waterloo

I'm dating myself but here goes. Does anybody else remember WATFOR & WATFIV?

FredDee - 27 May 2015 10:39:05 (#17 of 5179)

< puts hand up >

FredDee - 13 Jun 2015 11:16:45 (#18 of 5179)

Kids today, eh ? Apart from looking at pr0n on their smartphones,

what do they actually do ?

Discover exoplanets, for one thing :

( When we were a lad, we'd let the Starship Enterprise do that. )

Isolde - 15 Jun 2015 13:02:32 (#19 of 5179)

Probably too heavy for most, but fascinating reading if you know someone with bipolar, schizophrenia or depression.

LegalEyesAsh - 24 Jun 2015 00:00:19 (#20 of 5179)

Aside from the tinfoil commentary elsewhere, I find this kind of science fascinating for the hard science (what is that white spot composed of?), and the quality imagery. Maybe it's just me, but these images with ever better resolution cameras in the neighbourhood of distant planets and bodies, rather than from near Earth orbit or terrestrial telescopes (Hubble is impressive but still); it feels more 'real', IYSWIM.

Now we just need to stay alive for 20-30 more years for today's crop of mega megapixel cameras on probes to send back their images.

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