Tardigrade (a.k.a. “water bear” a.k.a. “moss piglet”) extravaganza!

Introduction: Tardigrades are microscopic animals and they are awesome.  They can withstand more abuse than any other known animal.  They can tolerate heat, cold, dehydration, and even the vacuum of space!  But they are not extremophiles (critters that love environments … Continued

Humanity’s oldest ancestor was a tiny Packman-like sack with bad breath

Introduction: Scientists (Han et al., 2017) have just discovered well-preserved fossilised remains of humanity’s oldest ancestor (Figure 1).  The little dude—your greatest grand pappy—was called Saccorhytus coronarius. Details: Where, when and how old? S. coronarius lived in the seafloor during … Continued

A gigantic iceberg is about to crack off of Antarctica, here are three things you should know

Introduction: Several groups of researchers are reporting that a large rift (Figure 1) is stretching across the West Antarctic Ice Sheet’s Larsen C Ice Shelf (e.g. MIDAS and IceBridge).  This crack will eventually separate an iceberg the size of a … Continued

Anti-intellectualism and its hideous, mouth-breathing mutant offspring: scientific illiteracy

posted in: General science, Philosophy | 2

Introduction: If you’re reading this, you almost certainly think that the outcomes of scientific studies are pretty sweet.  After all, who doesn’t like living longer, living healthier, living with cooler toys and potentially prolonging the existence of humanity?  So why … Continued

kinesio tape sticks to skin, but seems ineffective for most other things

Introduction: For highly competitive athletes, the pressure to win is enormous.  Unfortunately, this pressure can make athletes grasp for the winning edge with a desperation that breeds credulity.  One form of this credulous behavior drives athletes to plaster colorful, stretchy … Continued

Foraminifera are crazy micro-messengers for the environment

Introduction: Foraminifera (singular = foraminifer) are a typically-microscopic zooplankton that live in all marine environments.  They are protists, which means they are comprised of a single cell and have no organs.  However, despite these limitations in size and complexity, they … Continued

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