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Eclipse

Panda's Thumb - Tue, 2014-08-12 12:04
Photograph by Keith Barkley. Photography contest, Finalist. Solar eclipse, May 20, 2012. Mr. Barkley writes, “I lucked out that the eclipse was still going on during local sunset. One of the few eclipse images you will see that was taken without a sun-viewing filter on the lens.”... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Neil deGrasse Tyson is not afraid of genetically modified foods

Panda's Thumb - Tue, 2014-08-12 12:04
A blogger in the Daily Kos reports that Neil deGrasse Tyson thinks people should “chill out” regarding genetically modified food. Tyson argues, as I have for years, that all our food is genetically modified, but it took on the order of 10,000 years to get where we are now. The pseudonymous blogger, SkepticalRaptor, notes that GM foods are to many on the left as global warming is to many on the right: It is an... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Aeshna multicolor

Panda's Thumb - Wed, 2014-08-06 16:17
Photograph by David Cox. Photography contest, Finalist. Aeshna multicolor – blue-eyed darner.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Jack Friedman dies

Jack Friedman, a past president of NCSE's board of directors, died on July 31, 2014, at the age of 88, according to Newsday (August 2, 2014).

Categories: Pro-Science News

Happy 270th birthday, Jean-Baptiste!

Panda's Thumb - Fri, 2014-08-01 21:18
Jean-Baptiste Pierre Antoine de Monet was born on 1 August 1744 in Bazentin-le-Petit, Picardy, France. He was from a family of impoverished nobility, so he came to have the title Chevalier de Lamarck. He died at the age of 85 on 18 December 1829. He was probably the greatest invertebrate biologist, clarifying the classification of invertebrates greatly. For that matter he is the one who coined the terms “invertebrate” and “biology”. He also was the... Joe Felsenstein http://evolution.gs.washington.edu/felsenstein.html
Categories: Pro-Science News

The Last Word on the Ark Park

Panda's Thumb - Thu, 2014-07-31 08:37
The Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Authority, in a unanimous vote, gave preliminary approval to $18 million in tax incentives for the Ark Park. In what you might call an unusual piece of reverse evolution, Lawrence O’Donnell last night made a monkey of Ken Ham, Biblical literalists, and the Tourism Authority. The “tape” is 8 min long and worth every moment. Unfortunately, it will not be the last word on the Ark Park.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Phalacrocorax harrisi

Panda's Thumb - Thu, 2014-07-31 08:37
Photograph by Dan Moore. Photography contest, Second Place. Phalacrocorax harrisi – flightless Galápagos cormorant. Mr. Moore writes, “Having made its way to a small set of islands we now call the Galápagos and given sufficient food and no predators, the cormorant had no need to fly, so over the years lost its full-feathered wings. Its bright-orange companion is Grapsus grapsus – the Sally Lightfoot crab.”... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

NCSE webinar, Petitions and Organizing, Wednesday

Panda's Thumb - Thu, 2014-07-31 08:37
What we got from NCSE: We’re gearing up for this month’s webinar, which will cover how to use online petitions as an organizing tactic, and how to make the most of them. We’ll demo some of the software people use, talk about how to write a great petition, and talk about how to use the resulting list of supporters to grow your groups and fight science denial. We’ll talk a bit about building and maintaining... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Walter Gehring dies

The eminent biologist Walter Gehring died on May 29, 2014, at the age of 75, according to the Biozentrum at the University of Basel.

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End to the impasse in sight?

A panel approved a proposed revision to the section on evolution in South Carolina's new state science standards, according to The State (July 29, 2014). If the revision is approved by the state board of education and the Education Oversight Committee, it will end the impasse over South Carolina's state science standards that began with the EOC's refusal in December 2013 to accept a standard covering evolution.

Categories: Pro-Science News

NCSE's next webinar for activists

NCSE is pleased to announce the next of a new series of on-line workshops aimed at broadening and deepening the networks that make our work possible. The next workshop focuses on on-line petitions as a tool in science education advocacy, with advice about how to write, promote, and use such petitions.

Categories: Pro-Science News

Physicists and engineers decide how to analyze evolution

Panda's Thumb - Thu, 2014-07-24 18:20
A big story in the press today. Scientists – mechanical engineers and physicists, one working for Boeing with his office only a few miles from my home – show that the evolution of airplanes works the same way as the evolution of organisms: The evolution of airplanes A. Bejan, J. D. Charles and S. Lorente J. Appl. Phys. 116, 044901 (2014); http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4886855 (fortunately this paper can be downloaded for free). They make allometric plots of... Joe Felsenstein http://evolution.gs.washington.edu/felsenstein.html
Categories: Pro-Science News

Contrails

Panda's Thumb - Thu, 2014-07-24 18:20
Contrails, in the general direction of Denver International Airport, as seen from Boulder, Colorado, August, 2011. Jeff Mitton, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado, in an article in the Boulder Daily Camera, reminds us that contrails reduce diurnal temperature fluctuations and may have a significant effect on climate.... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Polling climate around the world

A new report from Ipsos MORI includes data on public opinion about the causes of climate change from twenty nations — and the United States led the world in the rate of climate change denial, as assessed by answers to two questions.

Categories: Pro-Science News

Church Youth Groups and Apologetics

W.R. Elsberry's The Austringer - Sat, 2014-07-19 01:41
Over on Facebook, Nancy Pearcey responded to a post about young people and deconversion from churches with a modest proposal: let them read apologetics. Age at which people leave the church — Tell me again why youth groups focus on games and goodies instead of majoring on apologetics? One study found that the age at […]
Categories: Pro-Science News

Understanding creationism, VIII: An insider's guide by a former young-Earth creationist

Panda's Thumb - Fri, 2014-07-18 16:04
By David MacMillan. 8. New perspective. I think there are several different varieties of creationism activists. Some are obsessed with the presumed negative effects of evolution and secular humanism. Some are driven by suspicion for science and the certainty that a conspiracy must be afoot. Some use creationist apologetics to make themselves feel smarter and better-informed than the general public. Some are genuinely interested in science and want to know the truth. I’d be lying... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Asteroid named for NCSE's Scott

Asteroid 249530 Eugeniescott was named in honor of NCSE's founding executive director Eugenie C. Scott, according to the Minor Planet Circulars for July 12, 2014 (PDF, p. 324).

Categories: Pro-Science News

Acharia stimulea

Panda's Thumb - Tue, 2014-07-15 03:12
Photograph by Al Denelsbeck. Photography contest, Winner. Our congratulations to Al Denelsbeck, the winner of the latest Panda’s Thumb photography contest with his remarkable photograph “Parasitized moth larva.” “Flightless cormorant,” by Dan Moore, was second. We will award Mr. Deneslbeck a book generously supplied by NCSE. Acharia stimulea – saddleback caterpillar moth larva, which has been parasitized by a species of Braconid wasp, of the superfamily Ichneumonoidea. Mr. Denelsbeck writes, “Darwin, of course, made a... Matt Young http://www.mines.edu/~mmyoung
Categories: Pro-Science News

Wyoming reacts to the Climate Bill of Rights

The Climate Science Students Bill of Rights, which articulates the principle that all students deserve the best climate science education available as part of a 21st-century science education, was widely discussed in Wyoming.

Categories: Pro-Science News
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