Ascension Earth 2012 -- December 30th, 2014
- Your New Years's Resolution! Make this New Year's the Most Significant One in Your Life! ~ Go Vegetarian! Narrarted by Alec Baldwin
- UFOs are the Topic on Coast to Coast Radio
- Dinosaur Researchers Say They're in a 'Golden Age' of Discovery Due to the 'Jurassic Park' effect
- NASA selects four key commercial partners for improved spaceflight
- Lost memories may not be gone forever, new brain research says
- Changing Reality ~ Is our reality really being created in the 5th Dimension?
- The Year in Ideas: TED Talks of 2014
- Amazingly Smart & Clever Animals
- What wiped out the first inhabitants of North America?
- Exploring the Outer Planets
Your New Years's Resolution! Make this New Year's the Most Significant One in Your Life! ~ Go Vegetarian! Narrarted by Alec Baldwin
Posted: 29 Dec 2014 09:37 PM PST
Posted: 29 Dec 2014 09:23 PM PST
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Posted: 29 Dec 2014 09:20 PM PST
Excerpt from nbcnews.com
This was a great year for dinosaurs. Dreadnoughtus, "Jar Jar Binks," and a swimming Spinosaurus all made headlines — and 2015 could hold even more surprises.
It wasn't always like this. From 1984 to 1994, there were about 15 new dinosaur species named per year. This year, nearly one species was discovered every week.
"We're absolutely in a golden age of dinosaur discovery," David Evans, who oversees dinosaur research at the Royal Ontario Museum, told NBC News. "It is probably a better time to be a dinosaur paleontologist now than any other time in the last century."
The 'Jurassic Park' effect
When it comes to finding dinosaurs in the dirt, paleontologists are using the same tools that they were 30 years ago. Satellite images might give them a better view of dig sites, but for the most part the process has not changed much.
So why are there so many dinosaur discoveries these days? More people are looking for them. Evans estimates that the number of dinosaur paleontologists has more than quadrupled in the last 30 years.
Every paleontologist interviewed for this story pointed to one catalyst for the paleontology boom: Steven Spielberg's 1993 blockbuster "Jurassic Park."
"It put the most lifelike, scientifically accurate dinosaurs ever on the big screen," Evans said. "That helped the public moved beyond the classical view of dinosaurs as slow, dim-twitted creatures."
Famed Montana State University paleontologist Jack Horner admits he has a special affection for the film. He served as scientific adviser for the original "Jurassic Park" and was the inspiration for Dr. Alan Grant, the movie's protagonist. He also consulted on the upcoming "Jurassic World" starring Chris Pratt.
"'Jurassic Park' attracted an incredible number of people to the field," Horner told NBC News. "I'm hoping that we put together something cool with 'Jurassic World' that people will really like and get more children interested in paleontology."
Increased interest led to increased paleontology budgets for museums and universities, Evans said. That has made a big difference in places like China and Argentina, relatively unexplored areas where a new generation of paleontologists has unearthed most of the recent headline-grabbing discoveries.
"The number of dinosaur researchers is much higher now than in the '90s," Thomas Holtz, a vertebrate paleontologist at the University of Maryland, told NBC News. "Anytime you are exploring a region and a slice of time that hasn't been sampled before, chances are that everything you are finding is new."
2014 and beyond
Some of the biggest discoveries of the year were not new species. Instead, they were more complete fossils of dinosaurs the scientific community knew very little about.
Take Spinosaurus, a massive carnivore that was even bigger than Tyrannosaurus rex. While its teeth indicated it ate fish, scientists were divided on whether it roamed the land and water looking for prey.
This year, the matter was settled. A new paper showed that the dinosaur's unique body structure — tiny hind limbs, dense bones, crocodile-like receptors in its snout — was best suited for the water and caused it to waddle on land.
"That was probably the most significant find of the year," Horner said.
There were other big discoveries in 2014. Dreadnoughtus fossils discovered in Argentina belonged to a creature that measured 85 feet (26 meters) long and weighed about 65 tons (59 metric tons), or about as much as a dozen elephants.
Posted: 29 Dec 2014 09:05 PM PST
According to a NASA statement, on December 23, the agency released the names of the four American companies selected for future developmental collaborations. The companies were chosen under the auspices of the Collaborators for Commercial Space Capabilities program, which facilities industry access to NASA’s spaceflight resources. The products of the partnerships will be made available to governmental and non-governmental entities within the next five years.
The four companies that have been chosen are the following: ATK Space Systems of Beltsville, Maryland, which is space transportation capacity; Final Frontier Design of Brooklyn, New York, which is developing space suits for intra-vehicular operations; Space Exploration Technologies of Hawthorne, California, which is developing space transportation means that could be used to facilitate future deep space missions; and United Launch Alliance of Centennial, Colorado, which is developing new, less expensive launch vehicles with greater performance.
“These awards demonstrate the diversity and maturity of the commercial space industry. We look forward to working with these partners to advance space capabilities and make them available to NASA and other customers in the coming years,” said Phil McAlister, director of commercial spaceflight at NASA. Although NASA will contribute expertise, technology, evaluations and the resultant data and insights, it is up to the four companies to cover the costs of their collaboration with NASA.
Posted: 29 Dec 2014 09:01 PM PST
New research from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), studying how memories are stored, finds that lost memories can be recovered—offering possible hope for patients suffering from the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.
The finding contradicts the long-held belief that memories are stored at the connections between neurons, or synapses—areas that are destroyed by Alzheimer’s disease.
“Long-term memory is not stored at the synapse,” said lead author David Glanzman, a UCLA professor of integrative biology and physiology and of neurobiology, in a statement. “That’s a radical idea, but that’s where the evidence leads.”
According to Glanzman, the nervous system can regenerate lost or broken synaptic connections. If synaptic connections can be restored, memory will return. “It won’t be easy, but I believe it’s possible,” he said.
The findings recently were published in the open-access journal eLife.
Glanzman said the finding that the destruction of synapses does not result in the destruction of memories could have important implications for people with Alzheimer’s disease.
“As long as the neurons are alive, the memory will still be there, which means you may be able to recover some of the lost memories in the early stages of Alzheimer’s,” Glanzman said.
Posted: 29 Dec 2014 08:55 PM PST
Posted: 29 Dec 2014 08:29 PM PST
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Posted: 29 Dec 2014 08:26 PM PST
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Posted: 29 Dec 2014 08:24 PM PST
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Posted: 29 Dec 2014 08:20 PM PST
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