Category Archives: Society

How the 1964 Alaska Earthquake Shook Up Science

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Author: Becky Oskin - Video

The earthquake struck at 5:36 p.m. Alaska Standard Time on Good Friday. When the first shaking hit, many parents were in the kitchen, fixing dinner. For more than 4 minutes, the earth buckled and lurched all across southern Alaska. Few people returned home to their meals that night. In Anchorage,...

Walk on by Britain: Two Little Girls Pretend to be Lost in a Busy Shopping Centre

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Author: Sam Greenhill

One little girl was clutching her favourite toy while her younger sister was sucking her thumb – and both looked utterly lost and forlorn. In a bygone era, a concerned adult might have stopped to ask them where their mother was. But in a damning indictment of modern Britain, hundreds...

Giraffe Kisses Dying Zoo Worker Final Goodbye

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Author: Heather Saul

Heart-breaking pictures have emerged of the moment a giraffe said goodbye to a terminally ill zoo worker, who had spent most of his adult life cleaning the animal's enclosures. Maintenance worker Mario has terminal cancer and had asked to be taken into the giraffe enclosure at Rotterdam’s Diergaarde Blijdorp zoo....

Power Lines Look Terrifying to Animals

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Author: Anna Newby - Video

It’s surprising that more animals don’t crash into power lines. The wires don’t look like much of a barrier, yet scientists have found that animals will avoid them even after they’ve been in place for 30 years. This suggests it is not the human presence, noise, or other construction-related disturbances...

‘Gay Rights Cause Tornadoes, Autism is a Punishment From God. God is Angry’

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Author: Heather Saul

A congressional candidate in Chicago, who blames natural disasters such as tornados on gay rights and claims autism is a punishment from God, has won the GOP nomination and will challenge Democrat Jan Schakowsky for the 9th Congressional district of the city. Among her many controversial views, Susanne Atanus is...

Drowning in Light

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Author: Dirk Hanson

In 1996, Yale economist William D. Nordhaus calculated that the average citizen of Babylon would have had to work a total of 41 hours to buy enough lamp oil to equal a 75-watt light bulb burning for one hour. At the time of the American Revolution, a colonial would have...

How Poor Discipline Techniques Create Lifelong Problems

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Author: Chris Weller

As child psychologists learn more about the way kids’ brains develop, they’re unearthing clues about how that development is shaped by outside forces. Discipline remains chief among those forces, as the way kids come to understand punishment is, in turn, reflected in their adult actions. “Tough love” used to mean...

Secrets of Chinese Terra-Cotta Warrior Weapons Revealed

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Author: Tia Ghose

One of the most astounding archaeological discoveries of the 20th century is arguably the life-size terra-cotta army buried alongside China's first emperor. Now, scientists have figured out how the bronze triggers for the crossbows of the 8,000 terra-cotta warriors were manufactured. Teams of craftspeople worked in small groups to produce...

Threat of Monster California Quake Even Greater Than Feared

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Author: Rong-Gong Lin

If a 9.0 earthquake were to strike along California's sparsely populated North Coast, it would have a catastrophic ripple effect. A giant tsunami created by the quake would wash away coastal towns, destroy U.S. 101 and cause $70 billion in damage over a large swath of the Pacific coast. More...

How the NSA Plans to Infect ‘Millions’ of Computers with Malware

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Author: Ryan Gallagher and Glenn Greenwald

Top-secret documents reveal that the National Security Agency is dramatically expanding its ability to covertly hack into computers on a mass scale by using automated systems that reduce the level of human oversight in the process. The classified files – provided previously by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden – contain new...

Cyberwar Could Change History with a Click

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Author: Daniel Prince, Mark Lacy

Not all violence in war and conflict is simply strategic. And not all the destruction that takes place is a consequence of territorial or geopolitical objectives. Taking over the next village, blocking a trade route or destroying the critical infrastructure that supports everyday life are the fundamentals of strategic advance...

Happy Bday Barbie! You’re Over

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Author: Brandy Zadrozny

Barbie turns 55 today, and she doesn’t look so good. Despite a flurry of PR in the constant quest to keep America’s original teenage fashion model doll relevant—including a controversial Sports Illustrated spread and a partnership with the Girl Scouts—Barbies aren’t flying off the shelves like they used to. Girls...

Tutankhamun’s Blood

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Author: Jo Marchan

Thirty feet beneath thedesert of southern Egypt, Yehia Gad stands in a cramped, stone tomb. On the wall, brightly-colored paintings tell the story of an ancient king’s journey into the afterlife. The precise strokes show a mummy embalmed with great care, a perilous battle for his soul, and an eternity...

The Woman Who Can Will Herself Out Of Her Body

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Author: Douglas Main

After a class on out-of-body experiences, a psychology graduate student at the University of Ottawa came forward to researchers to say that she could have these voluntarily, usually before sleep. "She appeared surprised that not everyone could experience this," wrote the scientists in a study describing the case, published in...