Newslinks 2015-5-15

A biological line is crossed as scientists discover a warm-blooded fish. A paper on the genomics of fruit flies is raising eyebrows with a massive list of over 1000 authors. The list is massive because it includes over 900 undergrads who helped analyze a portion in the main professor’s class. More traditional scientists are outraged …

Newslinks 2015-5-14

Bloomberg has a report that the US has had a new report of Assad using sarin gas in Syria. The administration hesitated to respond and then never got around to addressing it, what with all the buzz around ISIS and the administration’s great reluctance to get more involved. Alarmingly, rebel groups seem to be trying …

Newslinks 2015-5-8

The UK elections are being counted and it looks like a total disaster for Labour. Labour leader Ed Milliband goes from contemplating a broad coalition under his leadership to wondering if he’ll have a job tomorrow. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas) has an op-ed in the Hill excoriating Congressional Republicans for trying to defund earth …

Book Review: War and National Reinvention: Japan in the Great War, 1914-1919 by Frederick Dickinson

When most people think of modern Japanese history, they think of the Meiji Restoration as the modernization of Japan, World War II, and then Japan’s subsequent rise to its current position as an economic powerhouse. This book fills in the large gap between Meiji and World War II, arguing Japan made a second transition after …

Newslinks 2015-5-7

The espionage tables turn on Germany amid revelations that the Germans have been spying on European companies and institutions. In the meantime, France’s National Assembly passes an intelligence bill that is so permissive that it gives NSA-like powers without judicial review. Congress wants to take a look at Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s contacts amid allegations …

Newslinks 2015-5-6

Manny Pacquiao chalked up his loss to Floyd Mayweather to a shoulder injury, with an orthopedic surgeon indeed reporting to ESPN that Pacquiao will have surgery this week for a rotator cuff tear. But he could face disciplinary action because the Nevada Athletic Commission says Pacquiao did not report the injury and in fact reported …

Newslinks 2015-5-5

Venezuela nationalizes food distribution. Considering how badly the government has mismanaged everything else, this is pretty terrifying for Venezuela’s citizens. You know LA’s back to doing okay when the NYT is back to writing articles about how LA is such a great place for creative people. Jalopnik plays to stereotypes with an article about ten …

Newslinks 2015-5-2

Psychology research indicates uniforms do make the man. Suits help people think more abstractly. A woman’s perspective on Tinder. Pretty meandering thoughts. Tesla decides to admit it’s a battery company and has new plans for home models. The Guardian has a feature on the internet’s love of watching people lance cysts and pop pimples. Most …

Newslinks 2015-5-1

Scientists publish an exciting result linking chromosome stability to aging. Time oversells it drastically by claiming scientists are on the verge of curing aging. Psychology completes a huge project aimed at legitimacy by replicating 100 key experiments from 2008. Only 39 results could be reproduced, with another 24 producing “moderately similar” or better results but …

Newslinks 2015-4-30

Nature has a great recap of the STAP saga and how it shook up Japanese science, mostly in a bad way. I think quite simply that Riken badly bungled its response, both sensationalizing the results too early and then mishandling the PR crisis. They still haven’t done the obvious of explaining how it all went …