Genomic Databases and the Tree of Life, Science
Excerpts: Although we have not yet counted the total number of species on our planet, biologists in the field of systematics are eagerly assembling the Tree of Life. (...)
If the supertree approach establishes the trunk and thick branches of the Tree of Life, then perhaps the barcoding approach is more appropriate for discerning the twigs and leaves of the tree (...)..However, the leaves are dropping quickly. We are losing 27,000 species each year while only describing 18,000 new species.
Biodiversity Conservation and the Eradication of Poverty, Science
Excerpts: It is widely accepted that biodiversity loss and poverty are linked problems and that conservation and poverty reduction should be tackled together. However, success with integrated strategies is elusive. There is sharp debate about the social impacts of conservation programs and the success of community-based approaches to conservation. Clear conceptual frameworks are needed if policies in these two areas are to be combined. We review the links between poverty alleviation and biodiversity conservation and present a conceptual typology of these relationships.
- Source: Biodiversity Conservation and the Eradication of Poverty, William. M. Adams, Ros Aveling, Dan Brockington, Barney Dickson, Jo Elliott, Jon Hutton, Dilys Roe, Bhaskar Vira, William Wolmer, Science : 1146-114, 04/11/12
A Political Economy Model Of Immigration Quotas, Econ. Governance
Excerpt: The paper examines a model in which the number of immigrants allowed into a country is the outcome of a costly political lobbying contest between a firm and a union. The union and the firm bargain over the wage of natives after the number of immigrants that will be permitted is known. I assume that the lobbying contest is an all-pay auction (i.e., the lobbyist with the higher effort wins with certainty). Comparative statics results are derived to show how the reservation wage of immigrants, (...) and the cost of lobbying affect immigration quotas and the post-immigration wage of natives.
Why Punish? Social Reciprocity And The Enforcement Of Prosocial Norms, J. Evol. Econ.
Abstract: Recently economists have become interested in why people who face social dilemmas in the experimental lab use the seemingly incredible threat of punishment to deter free riding. Three theories with evolutionary microfoundations have been developed to explain punishment. We survey these theories and use behavioral data from surveys and experiments to show that the theory called social reciprocity in which people punish norm violators indiscriminately explains punishment best.
The Social Implications Of Winner And Loser Effects, Alphagalileo & Biol. Lett.
Excerpt: More and more evidence from the animal world suggests that "winning begets winning" and "losing begets losing." Prior work on such winner and loser effects has focused on pairwise interactions, and not the extent to which winner and loser effects impact hierarchy formation. We examined the impact of winner and loser effects on hierarchy formation in the green swordtail, Xiphophorus helleri. Our results demonstrate that randomly chosen winners in pairwise contests were more likely to emerge as top-ranked individuals in a hierarchy, while randomly chosen losers were more likely to emerge as the lowest ranking individuals. (...)
What's on the Label?, Science
Excerpts: In the United States, labeling regulations are largely about the material content. In Europe, the method and place of production may also be specified in law, even if they make no material difference to the contents. This difference in approach is evident in the labeling of genetically modified (GM) foods. Whether the plant from which a food is made is GM is irrelevant in the United States, (...). But in Europe, labeling of foods containing DNA or protein from GM plants is mandatory, (...).
Search Wars - Which Is the Best?, BBC News
Excerpt: As Microsoft enters the internet search engine market, users find themselves overwhelmed with options. We compare the big players on five key areas. [Google, Yahoo, MSN, Ask Jeeves, and A9]
Realistic Species Losses Disproportionately Reduce Grassland Resistance, Science
Excerpts: Consequences of progressive biodiversity declines depend on the functional roles of individual species and the order in which species are lost. Most studies of the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relation tackle only the first of these factors. We used observed variation in grassland diversity to design an experimental test of how realistic species losses affect invasion resistance. Because entire plant functional groups disappeared faster than expected by chance, resistance declined dramatically with progressive species losses. Realistic biodiversity losses, even of rare species, can thus affect ecosystem processes far more than indicated by randomized-loss experiments.
Seeking the Key to Music, Science
Excerpts: Music, like language, can be a form of communication and coordination among people. Moreover, music is an exquisitely powerful way of conveying emotion,(...).
Foley points out that the apparent fitness benefit of social cohesion is also the current leading hypothesis for why language itself evolved. "So it makes sense to extend it to music and indeed most other activities," (...).
For social-cohesion theorists, the challenge is to explain why singing or dancing enhanced social bonding--and why that in turn fosters greater fitness and survival.
Music Mirrors Tone Patterns In Our Speech, Nature News
The team's analysis shows that fluctuations in pitch in music written by classic French composers vary much less than in British music. The difference mirrors the patterns of pitch found in the corresponding languages.
Composers' mother tongue helps to shape their work. c Punchstock
Musicologists and linguists have tried to connect cultures' speech with their music in the past but have only had luck with tonal languages, such as Chinese, which assign meaning to words based on their pitch.
The new work is the first to connect melody with non-tonal speech.
Excerpts: How quickly babies home in on the sounds of their native language during their first year may predict how quickly they learn new words, string together complex sentences, and acquire other language skills as toddlers. The new research, presented in San Diego, helps pin down a milestone in language development and may shed light on why the ability to pick up a new language wanes with age.
When it comes to language, babies are "citizens of the world,"(...).
By the end of their first year, however, babies begin to specialize.
Dynamics of Human Walking at Steady Speeds, Phys. Rev. Lett
Excerpts: Biped locomotion is discussed through a Lagrangian formulation for velocity-dependent, body driving forces. An analysis of level walking in humans is given through the known experimental data on the ground-reaction force and the external work without recourse to inverted-pendulum modeling. At a certain speed, rectilinear motion of the center of mass with its backward rotation along a shortened hypocycloid is ensured by double-frequency nonlinear oscillations, whose energy cost is 1% of the external work. With increasing speed, a peculiarity and an instability of the trajectory indicate, respectively, a slow-to-normal gait crossover and the maximal fast walking speed.
Brain Cells May Pay the Price for a Bad Night's Sleep, Science
Excerpts: Sleep apnea, a condition in which breathing irregularities occur during sleep, may kill neurons in brain regions crucial for learning and memory, (...). The findings may provide a disturbing explanation for the cognitive deficits often seen in people with sleep apnea. (...), new evidence suggests that adding an unhealthy diet to the mix greatly compounds the neural harm (...).
In the United States, sleep apnea affects at least 2% of children, 4% of middle-age adults, and 10% of older adults, (...), and it is even more common in obese people.
Ideas Stolen Right From Nature, Wired
Excerpts: "I wanted a nonliving system which would respond to changes in moisture by changing shape," (...). "There are several such systems in plants, but most are very small -- the pinecone is the largest and therefore the easiest to work on."
Pinecones respond to warmer temperatures by opening their scales (to disperse their seeds). The smart fabric does the same thing, opening up when it is warm, and shutting tight when cold.
Vincent's smart clothing is one of the projects representing British science at the
World Expo 2005 in Aichi, Japan.
Imitation in Animals and Artifacts [Book review], JASSS
Excerpt: The editors state that: "Building robots and software agents that can imitate other artificial or human agents in an appropriate way is an endeavour that involves the deepest problems of connecting perception, experience, context and actions." Carrying that thought further, I began to ponder its implications. If imitation, as an essential component of human learning capacities, can be properly formalised, robots will become capable of learning by imitating humans or one another. The science fiction future would have arrived!
Self-organized Criticality and Scale-free Properties in Emergent Functional Neural Networks, arXiv
Abstract: Recent studies on the complex systems have shown that the synchronization of oscillators including neuronal ones is faster, stronger, and more efficient in the small-world networks than in the regular or the random networks, and many studies are based on the assumption that the brain may utilize the small-world and scale-free network structure. We show that the functional structures in the brain are self-organized to both the small-world and the scale-free networks by synaptic re-organization by the spike timing dependent synaptic plasticity (STDP), which is hardly achieved with conventional Hebbian learning rules. We show that the balance between the excitatory and the inhibitory synaptic inputs is critical in the formation of the functional structure, which is found to lie in a self-organized critical state.
A Socially Enforced Signal Of Quality In A Paper Wasp, Nature
Excerpts: Badges of status are a subset of signals of quality that reveal information about an individual's size and dominance. (...) (that is, prevent low-quality cheaters from exploiting any fitness benefits associated with communicating high quality). (...) Here we report social costs in a previously undescribed badge of status: the highly variable black facial patterns of female paper wasps, (...).
(...) ('cheaters') received considerably more aggression from the dominant than did sham controls, indicating that facial patterns are signals and that dishonest signalling imposes social costs.
Animal Behaviour: Rank Crime And Punishment, Nature
Excerpts: In paper wasps, facial markings are cheap 'status badges' that would seem to be susceptible to cheating. But wasps punish those whose markings lie. (...)
'Badges of status' are markings that animals are thought to use to signal their size and dominance - they are indicators of rank. To be useful, however, they must be 'honest' indicators; a symbol of high rank cannot be adopted by a low-quality individual.
(...) brokenness - a measure that includes the number and irregularity of the spots - are slightly greater in wasps with wider heads.
Shots Make Monkeys Shoot Blanks, Science Now
Excerpts: Sperm-targeting vaccine shows promise as contraceptive in monkeys (...)
To test whether it worked, immunized males spent several days each with three different females during the fertile peak of the females' menstrual cycle. The upshot: None of the seven vaccinated monkeys managed to impregnate a female. Four of the six control monkeys did. Although the contraceptive effect of the vaccine was intended to be reversible, only five of the seven vaccinated monkeys, some of whom received the vaccine for nearly 2 years, recovered their fertility during the study, (...).
Vaccine Cripples Sperm In Monkeys, Nature News
A male contraceptive jab has edged closer to reality, after a study showed that monkeys are rendered infertile by a vaccine aimed at their sperm.
In contrast to the wide range of contraceptives on hand for women, men wanting to curb their fertility can choose between only condoms or a vasectomy. As part of an effort to extend these options, researchers have been struggling for more than 20 years to work out how to vaccinate men temporarily so that the immune system hobbles their sperm.
Monkeys given the vaccine produced sperm that could not fertilize eggs. c SPL
Reversible Immunocontraception in Male Monkeys Immunized with Eppin, Science
Excerpts: Various forms of birth control have been developed for women; however, there are currently few options for men. The development of male contraceptives that are effective, safe, and reversible is desired for family planning throughout the world. We now report contraception of male nonhuman primates (Macaca radiata) immunized with Eppin, a testis/epididymis-specific protein. Seven out of nine males (78%) developed high titers to Eppin, and all of these high-titer monkeys were infertile. Five out of seven (71%) high-anti-Eppin titer males recovered fertility when immunization was stopped. This study demonstrates that effective and reversible male immunocontraception is an attainable goal. This method of immunocontraception may be extended to humans.
- Source: Reversible Immunocontraception in Male Monkeys Immunized with Eppin, M. G. O'Rand, E. E. Widgren, P. Sivashanmugam, R. T. Richardson, S. H. Hall, F. S. French, C. A. VandeVoort, S. G. Ramachandra, V. Ramesh, A. Jagannadha Rao, Science : 1189-1190., 04/11/12
Vaccine Stretch: Smaller Dose Packs Punch Against Flu, Science News
Excerpts: A fraction of the standard dose of flu vaccine grants people immunity to influenza if injected into the skin rather than into the muscle of the upper arm, the usual target. That's the conclusion of two studies to appear in the Nov. 25 New England Journal of Medicine but released early because of their public health implications.
The technique will not be approved in time to solve this year's vaccine shortage, but it could mitigate future shortages and might also provide a new way to pump up immunity against flu in the elderly.
Editor's Note: From a complexity perspective the real question is why it took the expert until now to figure that out? Apparently it was common wisdom that all the immune related cells are under the skin and not in the muscles. Was this another QWERTY-type frozen historical accident?
Assault On Autism - Scientists Target Drugs And Other Environmental Agents, Science News
They knew of experiments showing that rats exposed to terbutaline before birth had brain abnormalities. More recently, they completed a yet-unpublished clinical study that found a higher-than-expected incidence of autism in both children in sets of fraternal twins whose mothers also took terbutaline during pregnancy. (...)
Steady Progress. Ben Bakter, who has autism, works with therapist Denise Jennings. C. Bakter, NAAR
This research reflects a shift in scientific thinking about what causes autism, and a push to look harder at potential environmental influences.
Moving Brain Implant Seeks Out Signals, New Scientist
Implants could one day help people who are paralysed or unable to communicate because of spinal injury or conditions such as (...) [ALS, Ed.] (Lou Gehrig's disease). Electrodes implanted in the brain could, in principle, pick up neural signals and convey them to a prosthetic arm or a computer cursor.
Electrodes on the go.
But there is a problem. Implanted electrodes are usually unable to sense consistent neuronal signals for more than a few months, (...).
(...) tissue building up on the electrodes may mask the signal; or the neurons emitting the signals can die.
Monkeys Discriminate Between Knowing And Not Knowing And Collect Information, Animal Cognition
Excerpt: Humans use memory awareness to determine whether relevant knowledge is available before acting, as when we determine whether we know a phone number before dialing. Such metacognition, or thinking about thinking, can improve selection of appropriate behavior. We investigated whether rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) are capable of a simple form of metacognitive access to the contents of short-term memory. (...) suggests that rhesus monkeys discriminate between knowing and not knowing. This result extends similar observations made of children and apes to a species of Old World monkey, suggesting that the underlying cognitive capacities may be widely distributed among primates.
New Brain Cells Develop During Alcohol Abstinence, ScienceDaily
Excerpts: (...) scientists have reported - for the first time - a burst in new brain cell development during abstinence from chronic alcohol consumption.The UNC findings (...) were based on an animal model of chronic alcohol dependence, in which adult rats were given alcohol over four days in amounts that produced alcohol dependency. (...) were the first to report that alcohol, during intoxication, has a detrimental effect on the formation of new neurons in the adult rat hippocampus. This brain region is important for learning and memory - in animals and humans - and is linked to psychiatric disorders, particularly depression. (...)
Sea Urchins Reveal Spiky Secret, Nature News
(...) sea urchins' ability to fashion spines from single, large crystals. Now they have cracked the prickly creatures' secret and made a discovery that could spur the development of dental implants and bone grafts.
Each sea-urchin spine is made from a single crystal of calcite, a mineral mostly consisting of calcium carbonate, and can reach several centimetres in length. The crystals have a complex structure bounded by smooth, curved surfaces, unlike calcite crystals grown in the lab, which take on an angular shape with six flat faces, (...).
A Bunch Of Leaves, Nature
Excerpts: The intricate and elegant architecture of a flower requires the activity of a plethora of proteins. Many belong to a group of gene regulators known as MADS-box proteins. These form multiprotein complexes that direct the formation of concentric whorls of sepals, petals, stamens and carpels. (...) without the concerted encouragement of four such proteins, all that is produced are clusters of leaves (...).
(...) mutating SEP4 alone had no obvious effect, but quadruple mutants lacking all four SEP proteins formed 'flowers' with no recognizable floral organs (...).
- Source: A Bunch Of Leaves, Christopher Surridge, DOI: 10.1038/432161a, Nature 432, 161, 04/11/11
Big Engine Finds Small Breaks, Nature
Excerpts: When a break occurs in the DNA double helix, it must be dealt with rapidly. The structure of one of the cellular machines responsible is now revealed, offering insights into its impressive speed and flexibility.
Start With Black Hole, Then Add Stars, Science Now
In today's universe, giant black holes are never naked--they're always cloaked by the bright starry centers of galaxies. But astronomers have long wondered which came first, the black holes or the stars. A new image of gas around the most distant black hole known suggests that it arose without many stars around it. The result is a tantalizing clue in the puzzle of how today's grand galaxies assembled.
The hole story. Gas surrounds a giant black hole in the early universe in this radio image, but astronomers see little evidence for a massive galaxy of stars.
CREDIT: WALTER ET AL./NRAO/AUI/NSF
(...) , the central swarms of stars in galaxies are always about 500 times more massive than the giant black holes they contain (...).
Second Black Hole for the Milky Way, Science Now
There are two main types of black holes. Stellar black holes are the remains of exploded stars. They are just a few times heftier than the sun. On the other end of the scale are supermassive black holes, which lurk in the cores of galaxies and can weigh several billion times the mass of the sun. (...), astronomers using x-ray satellites have found evidence of medium-sized black holes, a few thousand times the sun's mass. They are thought to form in dense stellar clusters from chance collisions of massive stars.
Closely knit. Blue and white dots in this infrared image are stars held together by the gravity of a medium-sized black hole. Credit: Gemini Observatory
Quantum Astronomy: The Double Slit Experiment, Space.com
This is a series of four articles each with a separate explanation of different quantum phenomena. Each of the four articles is a piece of a mosaic and so every one is needed to understand the final explanation of the quantum astronomy experiment we propose, possibly using the Allen Array Telescope and the narrow-band radio-wave detectors being build by the SETI Institute and the University of California, Berkeley.
Quantum Lab Fits On A Chip, Nature News
A tiny cavity inside a crystal makes an ideal laboratory for quantum experiments, according to two teams of scientists who have entangled light and matter inside a solid for the first time.
This tiny pillar of gallium arsenide, just 800 nanometres across, is home to a quantum laboratoryL
Their miniature laboratories should make it easier to study quantum entanglement, (...) help to build a quantum computer.
Trapping the entangled objects inside semiconductors means that physicists can easily hook them up to conventional circuits. "The photonic crystal slab offers the attractive possibility of interconnecting various sources and detectors all on the same chip,"(...).
Spin Current Sighting Ends 35-Year Hunt, Science Now
(...) discovered a scheme for electrically injecting spins into a semiconductor, another long-sought goal of spintronics (...).
Sidetracked. Impurity atoms deflect electrons with different spins (red and blue) to opposite sides of a semiconductor chip. Credit: Y. K. Kato Et Al.
Using standard techniques for tailoring the amount of impurity atoms and other "defects" in semiconductors, "it should be possible to engineer materials to increase the size of this effect," Awschalom says. That in turn could point the way for spintronics researchers to develop an array of spin-manipulating devices to switch currents of particular spins on and off, as well as steer, filter, and amplify them.
Making Waves, Nature
Excerpts: Of course, molecules and atoms were small enough and easily produced very short waves. But to get a respectable amount of light out, high temperatures would be needed to excite sufficient numbers of molecules. Too high in fact - (...).
But wait a minute! This assumes that the molecules are in thermal equilibrium. What if they weren't? A collection of excited molecules in complete non-equilibrium would have no such limit to their potential radiation intensity. This was, at least, a possibility - but in practice would it produce an appreciable amount of power?
Editor's Note: This is the story of the discovery of the MASER, a precursor of the LASER.
- Source: Making Waves, Charles H. Townes, DOI: 10.1038/432153a, Nature 432, 153, 04/11/11
Laser Beams: Knotted Threads Of Darkness, Nature
Excerpts: Destructive interference may lead to complete cancellation when light waves travelling in different directions cross, and in three-dimensional space this occurs along lines that are vortices of electromagnetic energy flow. Here we confirm theoretical predictions by experimentally creating combinations of optical laser beams in which these dark threads form stable loops that are linked and knotted.
Abstract: We present event-driven simulation results for single and multiple intruders in a vertically vibrated granular bed. Under our vibratory conditions, the mean vertical position of a single intruder is governed primarily by a buoyancylike effect. Multiple intruders also exhibit buoyancy governed behavior; however, multiple neutrally buoyant intruders cluster spontaneously and undergo horizontal segregation. These effects can be understood by considering the dynamics of two neutrally buoyant intruders. We have measured an attractive force between such intruders which has a range of five intruder diameters, and we provide a mechanistic explanation for the origins of this force.
- Source: Are Brazil Nuts Attractive?, Duncan A. Sanders, Michael R. Swift, R. M. Bowley, P. J. King, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 208002, 04/11/10
A Fast Low-Power Optical Memory Based On Coupled Micro-Ring Lasers, Nature
Excerpts: The increasing speed of fibre-optic-based telecommunications has focused attention on high-speed optical processing of digital information1. Complex optical processing requires a high-density, high-speed, low-power optical memory that can be integrated with planar semiconductor technology for buffering of decisions and telecommunication data. Recently, ring lasers with extremely small size and low operating power have been made, and we demonstrate here a memory element constructed by interconnecting these microscopic lasers.
- Source: A Fast Low-Power Optical Memory Based On Coupled Micro-Ring Lasers, Martin T. Hill, Harmen J. S. Dorren, Tjibbe de Vries, Xaveer J. M. Leijtens, Jan Hendrik den Besten, Barry Smalbrugge, Yok-Siang Oei, Hans Binsma, Giok-Djan Khoe, Meint K. Smit, Nature Vol 432, 04/11/11
Earth Tides Can Trigger Shallow Thrust Fault Earthquakes, Science
Excerpts: We show a correlation between the occurrence of shallow thrust earthquakes and the occurrence of the strongest tides. The rate of earthquakes varies from the background rate by a factor of 3 with the tidal stress. The highest correlation is found when we assume a coefficient of friction of £g = 0.4 for the crust, although we see good correlation for £g between 0.2 and 0.6. Our results quantify the effect of applied stress on earthquake triggering, a key factor in understanding earthquake nucleation and cascades whereby one earthquake triggers others.
Deep Ocean Overturning--Then and Now, Science
Excerpts: Knowledge of how fast the deep ocean overturned during the last glacial period is important for understanding how Earth's climate could enter such an extremely cold state.
(...) show that at the time of the Last Glacial Maximum, mid-depth waters were about as "old" (that is, they had spent as much time below the surface) as they are today. Coupled with other records from the deeper ocean, the data might help to determine what drives the strength of the overturning circulation in the first place.
Honeybees Defy Dino-killing 'Nuclear Winter', ScienceDaily
Excerpts: The humble tropical honeybee may challenge the idea that a post-asteroid impact "nuclear winter" was a big player in the decimation of dinosaurs 65 million years ago. Somehow the tropical honeybee, Cretotrigona prisca, survived the end-Cretaceous extinction event, despite what many researchers believe was a years-long period of darkness and frigid temperatures caused by sunlight-blocking dust and smoke from the asteroid impact (...) Late Cretaceous tropical honeybees preserved in amber are almost identical to their modern relatives, she says. If no modern tropical honeybee could have survived (...) they lived off of, Kozisek reasoned, something must be amiss with the nuclear winter theory. (...)
A Seashore Fight to Harness the Wind, NY Times
Excerpts: The 4,000-page draft gives new support to environmental groups that praise the project as a safe, nonpolluting and desperately needed alternative to fossil fuel power plants. But opponents challenge the report, the process that produced it and the idea of building the turbine array in the first place.
Regardless of its environmental impact, they say, it is just too ugly - an industrial development that would wreck pristine vistas in a major tourism area. (...)
The project would be the nation's first offshore wind power plant, (...).
Pentagon Envisioning a Costly Internet for War, New York Times
Excerpts: The Pentagon is building its own secure Internet, the Global Information Grid, or GIG, at a cost of $200 billion or more. The goal is to give all American commanders and troops a moving picture of all foreign enemies and threats -- "a God's-eye view" of battle.
Urban Warfare Deals Harsh Challenge to Troops, NY Times
Excerpts: A night with the marines in Falluja offers a textbook illustration of the complexities of urban warfare.
Trouble Spots Dot Iraqi Landscape, Attacks Erupting Away From Fallujah, Washington Post
Excerpts: U.S. and Iraqi officials said they knew that Ramadan would bring attacks, and that the widely publicized offensive in Fallujah would spark violent provocations in other predominantly Sunni Muslim centers. But the scale of the Mosul attack surprised the U.S. forces in the city. And the disintegration of the city's police force recalled the debacles of April, when a suddenly rampant insurgency shattered faith in the security forces that are expected to assume the ever more difficult task of making Iraq at least reasonably safe.
Complex Challenges: Global Terroist Networks
U.S. Judge Halts War-Crime Trial at Guantanamo, NY Times
Excerpts: A federal judge ruled Monday that President Bush had both overstepped his constitutional bounds and improperly brushed aside the Geneva Conventions in establishing military commissions to try detainees at the U.S. naval base here as war criminals.
The ruling by Judge James Robertson (...) brought an abrupt halt to the trial of one detainee, one of hundreds being held here as enemy combatants, and threw into doubt the future of the first set of U.S. military commission trials since the end of World War II.
Groups, U.S. Battle Over 'Global Terrorist' Label, Washington Post
Excerpts: As of today, neither Global Relief nor any of its officials have been charged with a crime. Charity officials have also not had a chance to confront all of the government's evidence linking the group to terrorism. The classified evidence remains out of reach, and much of the unclassified evidence turned out to be allegations in newspaper clippings.
Global Relief is one of three Islamic charities that were forced to shut down before they were formally declared "specially designated global terrorists" as part of the U.S. government's three-year-old campaign (...).
U.S. Plans Assault On Afghan Heroin, Washington Post
Excerpts: Worried about a vast and still growing heroin industry in Afghanistan, the Bush administration has devised a more aggressive counternarcotics strategy aimed at greater eradication of poppy fields, promotion of alternative crops and prosecution of traffickers.
The plan, a mix of stronger carrots and sticks, attempts to bring more coordination, more money and more muscle to Afghan and international programs launched over the past three years that have not made much of a dent in the lucrative drug business.
Links & Snippets
- Help America Vote, Washington Post, AFTER THE 2000 election debacle, Congress took steps to improve the voting system, but it acted slowly, stingily and sloppily. Of the $4 billion for...
- Is God in Our Genes?, Jeffrey Kluger, 04/10/25, Times, A provocative study asks whether religion is a product of evolution. Inside a quest for the roots of faith
- Non-Immune Cells Autophage Too, 04/11/05, The Scientist, Study in Science finds that cells can use process to entrap bacteria
- Pioneer Ultraviolet Laser Promises 500GB Disks, 04/11/08, The Inquirer
- Firefox Browser Takes On Microsoft, BBC News, 04/11/09, Microsoft's Internet Explorer has a serious rival in the long-awaited Firefox 1.0 web browser, which has just been released. BBC News.
- Riding on Air, Adrian Cho, 04/11/09,
X-treme idea. Just as air trapped in snow holds up a snowboarder, air trapped in goose down--or its synthetic equivalent--could support a speeding train car. Credit: Photos.Com
- A Fast Low-Power Optical Memory Based On Coupled Micro-Ring Lasers, Martin T. Hill, Harmen J. S. Dorren, Tjibbe de Vries, Xaveer J. M. Leijtens, Jan Hendrik den Besten, Barry Smalbrugge, Yok-Siang Oei, Hans Binsma, Giok-Djan Khoe, Meint K. Smit, 04/11/11, Nature Vol 432
- A Magnetic Pendulum, Claude Chappert, Thibaut Devolder, 04/11/11, Nature Vol 432, Where two oppositely magnetized regions meet, there is a so-called domain wall. Under the right conditions, this wall can be made to oscillate like a pendulum, suggesting a new approach to electronics.
- Skeptics Question Whether Flores Hominid Is a New Species, Michael Balter, 04/11/12, Science : 1116
- Cavity Light Bullets: Three-Dimensional Localized Structures in a Nonlinear Optical Resonator, Massimo Brambilla, Tommaso Maggipinto, Giuseppe Patera, Lorenzo Columbo, 04/11/12, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 203901
- Robustness of the Noise-Induced Phase Synchronization in a General Class of Limit Cycle Oscillators, Jun-nosuke Teramae, Dan Tanaka, 04/11/12, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 204103
- Give And Take: Plant Parasites Dole Out Genes While Stealing Nutrients, 04/11/13, Science News, New evidence suggests that parasitic plants can transfer their own genes into host plants.
- Piddly Puddle Peril: Little Water Pools Foil Road Friction, 04/11/13, Science News, Physicists have proposed an explanation for how even slight wetness can cut road-to-rubber friction.
- Dino Dwarf: Island Living May Have Led To Ancient Downsizing, 04/11/13, Science News, Fossils unearthed at a German quarry hint that members of one species of dinosaur that lived in the region about 152 million years ago evolved to be abnormally small because of the constraints of its island ecosystem.
- Synchronized Thinking: Brain Activity Linked To Schizophrenia, Skillful Meditation, 04/11/13, Science News, In separate studies, scientists linked distinctive, collective electrical discharges of brain cells to certain schizophrenia symptoms as well to integrated mental states attained by Buddhist meditators.
- Frozen Assets, 04/11/13, Science News, A U.S. gene bank has begun deep-freezing semen and other livestock 'seed' for possible future use in research or breeding.
- Light Step Toward Quantum Networks, 04/11/13, Science News, During the transfer of a quantum data bit from matter to light, a cloud of extremely cold atoms emitted a photon carrying a version of the cloud's quantum state.
- Heavy Traffic May Trigger Heart Attacks, 04/11/13, Science News, Exposure to traffic can dramatically increase a person's risk of having a heart attack soon afterward.
- Can Phthalates Subtly Alter Boys?, 04/11/13, Science News, Researchers have linked a mom's exposure to phthalates with a genital marker in boys suggesting a subtle feminization of their reproductive organs.
- Uranium, The Newest 'Hormone', 04/11/13, Science News, Animal experiments indicate that waterborne uranium can mimic the activity of estrogen, a female sex hormone.
- DDT Linked To Miscarriages, 04/11/13, Science News, A study of Chinese women finds that the pesticide DDT can not only affect menstrual cycles but also foster miscarriages very early in pregnancy.
- Introduction to Chaos and Diffusion, G. Boffetta, G. Lacorata, A. Vulpiani, 2004/11/03, arXiv ["Chaos in geophysical flows", ISSAOS 2001], DOI: nlin.CD/0411023
- Epidemic Spreading in Dynamic Small World Networks, Sheng Li, Meng Meng, Hongru Ma, 2004/11/08, arXiv, DOI: nlin.AO/0411017
- Fitness And Evolutionary Stability In Game Theoretic Models Of Finite Populations, G. Wild, P. D. Taylor, 2004/11/08, Alphagalileo & Proc. B (Biological Sciences)
- Distress Calls May Honestly Signal Bird Quality To Predators, P. Laiolo, J. L. Tella, M. Carrete, D. Serrano, G. Lopez, 2004/11/08, Alphagalileo & Biology Letters
- Queen And Worker Policing In Monogynous And Monandrous Colonies Of A Primitively Eusocial Wasp, T. Saigo, K. Tsuchida, 2004/11/08, Alphagalileo & Biology Letters
- What Makes A Fast Racehorse?, M. Goode - matt.goodebbsrc.ac.uk, 2004/11/09, Alphagalileo & Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
- Student's Winning Invention Enables 'Animal On A Chip', 2004/11/09, ScienceDaily & University Of Michigan
- Images Of Desire: Brain Regions Activated By Food Craving Overlap With Areas Implicated In Drug Craving, 2004/11/11, ScienceDaily & Monell Chemical Senses Center
- Nonequilibrium Dynamics Of Social Groups: Insights From Foraging Argentine Ants, J. D. Halley, M. Burd - martin.burdsci.monash.edu.au, Aug. 2004, Insectes Sociaux, DOI: 10.1007/s00040-003-0725-x
- Queen Influence On Worker Reproduction In Bumblebees (Bombus Terrestris) Colonies, C. Alaux - cedric.alauxleec.univ-paris13.fr, P. Jaisson, A. Hefetz, Aug. 2004, Insectes Sociaux, DOI: 10.1007/s00040-004-0741-5
- Virgin Queens Selectively Destroy Fully Matured Queen Cells In The Honeybee Apis, K. Harano - haranocc.tuat.ac.jp, Y. Obara, Aug. 2004, Insectes Sociaux, DOI: 10.1007/s00040-004-0735-3
- Reproductive Effort In Relation To Maternal Social Rank In Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus), Ø. Holand - oystein.holandiha.nlh.no, R. B. Weladji, H. Gjøstein, J. Kumpula, M. E. Smith, M. Nieminen, K. H. Røed, Nov. 2004, Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, DOI: 10.1007/s00265-004-0827-0
- A Genetic Component To Size In Queens Of The Ant, Formica Truncorum, K. Bargum - katja.bargumhelsinki.fi, J. J. Boomsma, L. Sundström, Nov. 2004, online 2004/08/27, Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, DOI: 10.1007/s00265-004-0836-z
- A Comparison Of The Electroencephalogram Between Institutionalized And Community Children In Romania, P. J. Marshall, N. A. Fox, BEIP Core Group, Oct. 2004, Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
- Sensitive Periods In The Development Of The Brain And Behavior, E. I. Knudsen, Oct. 2004, Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
- Economic (Dis)Integration In The Presence Of Evolutionary Learning, C. Karayalcin - karayalcfiu.edu, D. M.-Carbajo - dmendeziwu.edu, D. Mitra - dmitramaxwell.syr.edu, Oct. 2004, Journal of Evolutionary Economics, DOI: 10.1007/s00191-004-0219-7
- Life Satisfaction Of Older People In Six European Countries: Findings From The European Study On Adult Well-Being, D. Ferring - dieter.ferringuni.lu, C. Balducci, V. Burholt, C. Wenger, F. Thissen, G. Weber, I. Hallberg, Online 2004/11/11, European Journal of Ageing, DOI: 10.1016/j.eiar.2004.06.006
- Transgenic Birds For The Production Of Recombinant Proteins, M. Kamihira, K. Nishijima, S. Iijima, Online Jul. 2004, Advances in Biochemical Engineering/Biotechnology, DOI: 10.1007/b94209
- ALife 9: Ninth International Conference on Artificial Life, Boston, MA, 04/09/12-15
The 4th Intl Workshop on Meta-synthesis and Complex System, Beijing, China, 04/07/22-23
Intl Conf on Complex Networks: Structure, Function and Processes, Kolkata, India, 04/06/27-30
From Autopoiesis to Neurophenomenology: A Tribute to Francisco Varela (1946-2001), Paris, France, 2004/06/18-20
ECC8 Experimental Chaos Conference, Florence, Italy,
Evolutionary Epistemology, Language, and Culture, Brussels, Belgium, 04/05/26-28
International Conference on Complex Systems 2004, Boston, 04/05/16-21
Life, a Nobel Story, Brussels, Belgium, 04/04/28
Nonlinear Dynamics and Statistical Mechanics Days, Brussels, Belgium, 04/04/26-27
Science Education Forum for Chinese Language Culture, Panel Discussion, Taipei, Taiwan, 04/05/01
Biologically Inspired Approaches to Advanced Information Technology, , Lausanne,Switzerland, 04/01/29-30
Nonlinear Dynamics And Chaos: Lab Demonstrations, Strogatz, Steven H., Internet-First University Press, 1994
- World Economic Forum 2004, Davos, Switzerland
- Riding the Next Democratic Wave, Al-Thani, Khan, Vike-Freiberga, Wade, Soros, Zakaria, World Economic Forum, 04/01/25
- The Future of Global Interdependence, Kharrazi, Held, Owens, Shourie, Annan, Martin, Schwab, World Economic Forum, 04/01/25
- Why Victory Against Terrorism Demands Shared Values
- CODIS 2004, International Conference On Communications, Devices And Intelligent Systems, 2004 Calcutta, India, 04/01/09-10
- EVOLVABILITY & INTERACTION: Evolutionary Substrates of Communication, Signaling, and Perception in the Dynamics of Social Complexity, London, UK, 03/10/08-10
- The Semantic Web and Language Technology - Its Po tential and Practicalities, Bucharest, Romania, 03/07/28-08/08
- ECAL 2003, 7th European Conference on Artificial Life, Dortmund, Germany, 03/09/14-17
- New Santa Fe Institute President About His Vision for SFI's Future Role, (Video, Santa Fe, NM, 03/06/04)
- SPIE's 1st Intl Symp on Fluctuations and Noise, Santa Fe, NM, 2003/06/01-04
- NAS Sackler Colloquium on Mapping Knowledge Domains, Video/Audio Report, 03/05/11
- 13th Ann Intl Conf, Soc f Chaos Theory in Psych & Life Sciences, Boston, MA, USA, 2003/08/08-10
- CERN Webcast Service, Streamed videos of Archived Lectures and Live Events
- Dean LeBaron's Archive of Daily Video Commentary, Ongoing Since February 1998
- Edge Videos
Conference & Call for Papers Announcements [
- Complexity and Philosophy Workshop - 2-Day Conference , Rio de Janeiro, 04/11
5th International EMBL PhD Students Symposium, , Heidelberg, Germany, 04/12/02-04
An Introduction to Complexity Science, Rockville, MD USA, 04/12/06
Improving Health of the Chronically Ill: Insights from Complexity Science, Rockville, MD USA, 04/12/07-08
- The 7th Asia-Pacific Complex Systems Conference, Queensland, Australia, 04/12/06-10
- 17th Australian Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Queensland, Australia, 04/12/06-10
- Cellular Computing Symposium, U Warwick
- International Conference On Computational Intelligence (Icci 2004) , Istanbul, Turkey, 04/12/15-17
- Kondratieff Waves, Warfare And World Security, NATO Advanced Research Workshop
, Covilh? Portugal, 05/02/14-17
- 2005 Meeting Arbeitskreis
Physik sozio-ökonomischer Systeme, AKSOE (Socio-Economic-Physics), Physik seit Einstein,
Berlin, Germany, 05/03/04-09
- 2005 World Exposition "
Nature's Wisdom, Aichi, Japan, 05/03/25-09/25
- FINCO 2005: Foundations Of Interactive Computation, Edinburgh, Scotland, 05/04/09
5th Creativity And Cognition Conference, London.UK, 05/04/12-15
Social Intelligence and Interaction in Animals, Robots and Agents, Hatfield, UK, 05/04/12-15
2005 NSTI Nanotechnology Conference and Trade Show
Nanotech 2005, Anaheim, California, U.S.A., 05/05/08-12
- 2ndShanghai Intl Symposium on Nonlinear Science and Applications, Shanghai, 05/06/03-07
IEEE Swarm Intelligence Symposium
Pasadena, California, USA, 05/06/08-10
- Powders & Grains 2005, Stuttgart, Germany, 05/06/18-22
- 6th Intl Conf Symmetry in Nonlinear Mathematical Physics, Kiev, Ukraine, 05/06/20-26
- Workshop on Complexity and Policy Analysis, Cork, Ireland, 05/06/22-24
2005 Genetic And Evolutionary Computation Conference (GECCO-2005), Washington, DC, USA, 05/06/25-29
5th Gathering on Biosemiotics, Urbino, Italy, 05/07/22-24
- ECAL 2005 - VIIIth European Conference on Artificial Life, Canterbury, Kent, UK, 05/09/05-09
Complexity, Science and Society Conf 2005, Liverpool, UK, 05/09/11-14
18th International Conference on Noise and Fluctuations (ICNF 2005), Salamanca, Spain, 05/09/19-23