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Updated: 19 min 31 sec ago

Can Math Answer Absurd Questions?

Fri, 03/06/2015 - 8:10am

When Randall Munroe volunteered to teach physics to high schoolers, his textbook approach to teaching the subject fell flat. Then he realized a way to get the kids excited about math -- Star Wars.

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How Can Math Help You Imagine The Impossible?

Fri, 03/06/2015 - 8:10am

Writer Randall Munroe doesn't love math, but has made a career out of solving equations. By answering outlandish hypotheticals, he uses numbers as a playground for the imagination.

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NASA Probe To Arrive At Dwarf Planet

Fri, 03/06/2015 - 2:47am

On Friday morning, NASA's Dawn mission will arrive at the dwarf planet Ceres. NPR's Geoff Brumfiel reports on the end of an odyssey to explore an odd, in-between world.

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Could A Quokka Beat A Numbat? Oddsmakers Say Yes

Fri, 03/06/2015 - 2:36am

In "Mammal March Madness," you win or die. No basketball in this tournament — it's a simulated survival-of-the-fittest game set up by evolutionary biologists. The battle cry? Mammals suck ... milk!

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Arsenic Antidote Hidden In Our Genes

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 3:56pm

Even at low doses, the potent poison damages organs and causes cancers. Now scientists have found a population high in the Andes Mountains that has adapted to the toxic metal over thousands of years.

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Eat Your Veggies! Even The Ones From Fukushima

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 3:55pm

Foods from Fukushima, Japan, are back to pre-accident levels of radiation but people still aren't eating them. One way to ease concerns: a chemical that blocks radioactive cesium from entering plants.

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Study: At 'Rate My Professors,' A Foreign Accent Can Hurt A Teacher's Score

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 1:24pm

A recent study found that teachers with Asian-sounding names were given poorer marks, and their accents were the main reason.

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We're Not Taking Enough Lunch Breaks. Why That's Bad For Business

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 9:47am

Research shows that only 1 in 5 five people take a break and leave their desks to eat. Most workers are simply eating at their desks. But creativity can take a big hit without a change of scenery.

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Jaw Fossil In Ethiopia Likely Oldest Ever Found In Human Line

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 2:45am

The 2.8 million-year-old bone may mark the first human branch in the primate family tree. It wasn't just a bigger brain that marked the shift, scientists say. It was also big changes in the mouth.

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Toronto Infertility Clinic Offers Controversial Treatment

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 2:43am

The technique claims to "recharge the batteries" in a woman's eggs using mitochondria from other cells extracted from her ovaries. The clinic's first births are due soon, though other doctors worry.

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Justices Roberts And Kennedy The Key Votes In Health Law Case

Wed, 03/04/2015 - 6:40pm

No telling yet which side will win. But did Justice Kennedy's mixed signals Wednesday hint that he was leaning toward the administration's view of federal subsidies for health insurance?

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Archaeologists Use Moles To Solve Mysteries Of Middle Ages' Fort

Wed, 03/04/2015 - 3:26pm

Danish archaeologists have recruited moles to help them dig. By sifting through molehills, they're able to map the location of the fort's buildings buried underground.

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Jawbone Fossil Fills Big Gap In Human Evolution, Scientists Say

Wed, 03/04/2015 - 1:37pm

Writing in Science, scientists say the 2.8-million-year-old fossil appears to belong to an individual from the beginning of the ancestral line that led to humans.

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People With Eczema Are Itching For Better Health Care

Wed, 03/04/2015 - 12:01pm

Just a rash? Not if you have eczema. People with eczema often have a hard time finding appropriate health care and are apt to miss work dealing with the chronic skin problem, a study finds.

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Why Shark Finning Bans Aren't Keeping Sharks Off The Plate (Yet)

Tue, 03/03/2015 - 6:12pm

Fewer shark fins are being imported into Hong Kong, the epicenter of shark-fin soup, a culinary delicacy. But while the trade in shark fins may be down, the trade in shark meat is still going strong.

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Even Some Doctors Fear These 10 Questions

Tue, 03/03/2015 - 3:04pm

Just 10 questions about bad childhood experiences can turn up undiagnosed illness in adults, research suggests. So why don't more doctors ask? Some say they aren't equipped to deal with the answers.

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GAO Report Urges Fewer Antipyschotic Drugs For Dementia Patients

Mon, 03/02/2015 - 3:15pm

Strong drugs are rarely warranted to control the behavior of dementia patients, specialists say. But antipsychotic medicine is being overprescribed, and not just among residents of nursing homes.

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Science-Based Artist Gives Celebrity Tortoise A Second Life

Mon, 03/02/2015 - 3:01pm

Lonesome George was the last surviving member of his species and a conservation icon. When the tortoise died, taxidermist George Dante set out to preserve his body, and his legacy.

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Can Family Secrets Make You Sick?

Mon, 03/02/2015 - 2:02pm

Few doctors — and few patients — realize just how profoundly early abuse, neglect and other childhood traumas can damage an adult's physical health.

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Take The ACE Quiz — And Learn What It Does And Doesn't Mean

Mon, 03/02/2015 - 1:57pm

First developed in the 1990s, the 10 questions of the Adverse Childhood Experiences test are designed to take a rough measure of a difficult childhood. Finding out your score is easy. Now what?

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