Category: Science

Cosmic Whale Music: Listen To What Cassini Picked Up Near Saturn

 

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Credit: NASA

NASA has released an extraordinary tape of the sound picked up by the Cassini spacecraft as it plunged into Saturn on its final mission in 2017.  The craft captured plasma waves from Saturn to its rings and into one of its moons, Enceladus. It is mesmerizing. It has been describing as Saturn singing and it is strangely beautiful.

 

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Just When You Thought You Had Enough To Worry About . . . Lunar Hay Fever

apollo moon photos-1033716704_v2.grid-6x2If you are planning to join the first Moon colony, you might want to read the latest report from NASA which found that moon dust is actually quite harmful to humans.  A recent study published in the April issue of the journal GeoHealth found that moon dust produces what some described as “lunar hay fever.” Indeed, it might give you Moon Lung if you live there long enough.

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Indian Minister Claims Ancient Hindus Invented The Internet

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Biplab Deb, who is the chief minister of the north-eastern state of Tripura, has become an international clown after claiming that the Internet was invented thousands of years ago by ancient Indians.   He now competes as the world’s least intelligent person with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan who claimed that Muslims discovered America.

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Federal Court Permits Emoluments Challenge To Move Forward

1600_executive_branchA federal judge issued a surprising decision that allowed part of an emoluments challenge to proceed toward trial.  The opinion has been widely misreported, but still represents a rare win for those arguing that President Donald Trump is accepting prohibited payments from foreign governments at the various Trump properties.  However, the decision is only on the threshold standing question and did not address the merits of the constitutional claim.  Moreover, United States District Judge Peter Messitte dramatically narrowed the action to only claims related to the Trump Hotel in Washington, D.C.  These is considerable debate over the meaning of the Constitution’s “emoluments” clause.  There are clearly good-faith arguments that such payments fall within the meaning of the language, but I remain highly skeptical.  Even with the much reduced action, I think Messitte is wrong and that the action should have been dismissed in its entirety.  Previous actions have been dismissed.

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Study Criticizes Engineering Programs For Focusing On Math and Science Rather Than Political Concerns

One_of_Diamonds_Mathematical_instruments_1702We recently discussed how University of Illinois math professor Rochelle Gutierrez triggered a national controversy over her work “Building Support for Scholarly Practices in Mathematics Methods” in which she criticized math classes as a “tool of whiteness.”  Then we discussed CUNY Professor Laurie Rubel’s publishing of a peer-reviewed article in the  Journal of Mathematics Education arguing that the concepts of meritocracy and “color-blindness” are ideological precepts that work against minorities.  Now four professors denouncing the “hegemony of meritocratic ideology” and the “masculine culture” in engineering courses as hostile to women. University of California (Irvine) Professor Carroll Serron’s March 1 study insists that merit-based advancement in engineering is harming women and fails to consider political factors in recognizing engineers.  The professors criticize the focus on “empirical science, technical thinking, merit, and individualism” as the cause for the isolation of female engineers.

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Stanford “Gender Research” Director Declares Space Exploration To Be “Another Example of Male Entitlement”

as11-40-5875hreditWe previously We discussed recent publications by academics arguing that math is a form of white privilege and male domination.  Now, Marci Bianco, the communications manager of Stanford University’s Clayman Institute for Gender Research, has found a new manifestation of patriarchy: space exploration.  In the article on NBC.com, Bianco declares that “the patriarchal race to colonize Mars is just another example of male entitlement.”  The efforts reveals a “Columbusing attitude.” The movie The Martian will now be renamed “The Patriarch.”

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