News Stories

February 2012

Death Valley Volcano More Active than Thought

A team of scientists has discovered that the Ubehebe volcano in Death Valley, California, "may explode at any time." Magma has built up under the surface much faster and higher than previously thought. There is a water table just 500 feet below the surface of the crater, and when the magma reaches the water, it will explode.
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Creating Monster Ants

Scientists have created monster ants from ordinary ones by using a special hormone on the larvae of ordinary worker ants to create monster "supersoldiers."

Supersoldier ants can be born naturally but are rare, and occur in Mexican and US deserts, where they've evolved to protect their colonies from invading ants.
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It's Not the Sun, It's Us

NASA reports that a recent lull in the sun's activity did not prevent the Earth from absorbing more solar energy than could escape back into space. This means that climate change is mainly caused by...
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Lost Gold May Have Been Located

Archeologists assumed that the legend of the Queen of Sheba, who ruled what is now Ethiopia and Yemen 3,000 years ago, was simply a Biblical legend--until now. She purportedly brought the then-ruler of Jerusalem--King Solomon--a vast quantity of gold from her private mine, but nobody has was able to locate the treasure or the mine. But now the...
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Stress on the Night Shift

A lot of unemployed people are settling for any job they can get, and in many cases, this means cooking fast food or being a waitress or waiter in a restaurant. If this is your first job that involves shift work, it can be tiring--but is it DANGEROUS? Is it bad for your health?

A recent...
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Stonehenge: Inspired by Music?

It's long been known that Stonehenge is laid out as a prehistoric calendar, and it may also be a type of ancient hospital. Now there's a third explanation for the stone formation: It may have been laid out...
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Your Cat May be Making You Crazy--or Sexy

About 15 years ago, evolutionary biologist Jaroslav Flegr began to notice dramatic changes in himself and upon investigation, theorized that a tiny parasite that he caught from his cat was subtly manipulating his personality, causing him to behave in strange, often self-destructive ways. And if it was doing this to him, it was...
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New Violins Sound as Good as Old Ones

It's always been assumed that if a violinist wants to turn professional, he or she needs to get hold of a Stradivari or Guarneri instrument. These violins are so rare that they cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, meaning that potential concert violinists have a harsh reality to face...
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Monsters in Primeval Water?

We worry about fighting off an alien invasion in the future, but the biggest invasion of new creatures...
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Electric Cars POLLUTE

China, which is heavily polluted, has a program to replace conventional automobiles with electric cars. But it turns out that these are EVEN MORE polluting than automobiles with gas engines!

When...
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Spider Goats

Scientists are creating strange hybrids in order to do medical research (NOTE: You can still get Whitley's novel "Hybirds" from the Whitley Strieber Collection). If these creatures...
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There may be Superbugs in Our Pork

We already know we should avoid pork products from China, but home-grown pork from the grocery store may be dangerous in ANOTHER way--it may be contaminated with superbugs.

Retail pork products in...
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Atomic Particles Taste Good

Quantum entanglement, which Albert Einstein called "spooky action at a distance," occurs when two atomic particles are split apart, but still INSTANTLY copy each other--no matter HOW far away from each other they are (NOTE:...
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Now Scientists are Being Gagged in Canada Too

NASA Scientists have been gagged in the US in the past--now Canadian scientists are complaining that their vital research on health and environment issues is being suppressed.

On BBC News, Pallab Ghosh quotes university scientist Thomas Pedersen as...
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Aflockalypse Again

Hundreds of dead starlings dropped from the sky in Laurel, Maryland recently. This isn't the first time something like this has happened. This time, the mass deaths are being blamed on everything from...
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Why It Suddenly Got So Cold

For the first half of the winter, there were warm temperatures and a lack of snow. But then all that changed: Temperatures in Europe have plunged. It has even snowed as far south as North Africa. Now it's...
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The Science Behind Soulful Songs

Why do we love songs that make us cry? The strong emotions they invoke set off a physical reaction that increases our "feel good" hormone dopamine. So even though it seems like we're unhappy, we've never felt HAPPIER!

When psychologist John Sloboda...
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Whales are Slaves in Aquatic Shows

People aren't the only ones who live in slavery. Five killer whales have been named as plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed by PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) against Sea World, which says they deserve the...
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Don't Like Your History? Change It!

At the same time our soldiers keep on fighting in Afghanistan, that country is rewriting its history books to LEAVE OUT its many wars.
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To Reverse Alzheimer's, Start with Smell

Alzheimer's stinks, but its victims don't know this because one of the earliest indications that a patient is coming down with this dread disease is loss of the sense of smell. If we learn how to reverse this, we may learn how to REVERSE the disease in the...
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BOOM!

The are a lot of strange sounds around lately (NOTE: subscribers can still listen to these special...
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Landscape Invaders

Here's yet another result of climate change: Our landscapes will change too. It's not just that we'll have to plant more hot weather,...
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We're All Hybrids

The traditional idea that modern humans left Africa and spread throughout the world about 50,000 years ago, replacing all other species of human, is changing. Instead, genetic analysis shows that modern humans encountered and bred with at least two different types of ancient humans: the Neanderthals, who lived in Europe and Asia, and a mysterious...
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Modern Slavery: Homeless White Men Shipped to Scandinavia and Europe

Not all slaves are black. In the UK, gypsies have been kidnapping homeless (mostly white) men and sending them abroad to work as virtual slaves. An investigation has discovered 32 victims of this practice. They are being transported to countries like Sweden...
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What are We DRINKING?

Water is becoming something that is in short supply, meaning we may soon be drinking reclaimed wastewater, especially in the desert states of the West (which, ironically, are the fastest-growing areas of the US). We know our drinking water is laced with prescription...
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Spying on Us from Space

The military's covert agency DARPA is working on a space-based spy telescope that can hover in orbit to "take real-time images or live video of any spot on Earth." They want to launch satellites that can zoom in on...
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The End May be Cold, Not Hot

The future may not roast us--it may freeze us instead. We may even be heading for a mini ice age like the one that occurred in the 17th Century. In other words, we may soon have a REAL reason...
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Why We All Have Different Faces

Why are the faces of primates (and people!) so dramatically different from one another?

Biologists working as "evolutionary detectives" studied the faces of 129 adult male primates from Central and South America in search of some answers, and discovered that faces they studied evolved over at least 24 million years....
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How to Get a Better Memory

Ever gone to the movies and forgotten where you parked the car? New research may one day help you improve your memory.

Neuroscientists have demonstrated that they can strengthen memory in patients by stimulating a critical junction in the brain. The finding could lead to a new method for boosting memory in patients with early...
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Mammals for Dinner

As the world population increases, people in coastal poverty-stricken areas are turning to the ocean for their meals, consuming marine mammals such as dolphins and seals. And this is not only happening in poor parts of the world!

The fate of the world's great whale...
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