Swinging the arms clearly saves energy for runners, and helps to minimise the amount that we rotate the body while swinging our legs, which led Arellano and Kram to wonder whether the metabolic benefits of arm swinging outweigh the cost of carrying the limbs.
Shimamura turned a former Sony Corporation semiconductor factory into the world’s largest indoor farm illuminated by LEDs. The special LED fixtures were developed by GE and emit light at wavelengths optimal for plant growth.
By controlling temperature, humidity and irrigation, the farm can also cut its water usage to just 1 percent of the amount needed by outdoor fields.
Facebook messed with its users? I’m shocked, shocked.
Facebook data scientists tweaked the algorithm that determines which posts appear on users’ news feeds—specifically, researchers skewed the number of positive or negative terms seen by randomly selected users. Facebook then analyzed the future postings of those users over the course of a week to see if people responded with increased positivity or negativity of their own, thus answering the question of whether emotional states can be transmitted across a social network. Result: They can! Which is great news for Facebook data scientists hoping to prove a point about modern psychology. It’s less great for the people having their emotions secretly manipulated.
Researchers put plastic backpacks on cows, then inserted tubes into their rumens (their biggest digestive tract). They extracted the methane–about 300 liters a day. That’s enough to run a car, or a fridge for 24 hours.
What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions will be published September 2nd by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Starting today you can pre-order it
Go to the link for the places where you can place your orders. There’s a link to the Kindle version in the comments. (search and ye shall find)
Processed foods are notorious for their jaw-droppingly long lists of chemical-laden ingredients, each one sounding worse than the last. But as these detailed infographics show, even the simplest of foods are anything but.
Here’s a link to Ed Yong’s piece this is based on.
It’s hard to really critique analysis based on a popular summary of research, but to me the explanation of using the earth’s magnetic field as a “rangefinder” seems lacking, since the foxes aren’t jumping a fixed distance to nab their prey. Still, however they are doing this it’s neat.
There’s an additional bit on kottke, showing acoustic location instruments (“war tubas”) which were used until radar took over. Cool.
When marine biologist Roger Hanlon caught this creature on camera, he said he screamed bloody murder. And no wonder. Did you see that thing appear out of nowhere?!
This is great, and an example of cooking as science (which I’m on record as saying doesn’t always/usually qualify, such as when you are simply following a recipe). This does qualify, because there are three tests proposed! All from the same starting point, so you are only changing one variable — the mixing time — and then comparing the results. Rigor!