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Archive for September 2003

September 27, 2003

 

Males Rule in Costa Rican Wasp Species

In most species of social insects, such as wasps, bees, and ants, the females rule. The females are the workers.

September 27, 2003

 

Flying Snakes

Given the hundreds of thousands of different animals inhabiting our planet, the list of those that can fly is quite small. “Fly Snakes” on today’s Moment of Science.

September 27, 2003

 

The Male Biological Clock

There’s a common belief that men can sire children until they die, but that women need to be relatively young to conceive healthy children. But the father’s age affects the child’s health too.

September 27, 2003

 

Bombproof Luggage Container

To be able to withstand a bomb blast, a luggage container must be made of pretty strong stuff. The magic ingredient in the best-known bombproof container is called Glare, which is short for “reinforced glass.”

September 27, 2003

 

To Immunize or Not to Immunize…

Vaccines consist of mild doses of disease-causing bacteria or virus that trigger the creation of antibodies that fight infection.

September 27, 2003

 

The Anatomy of a Flame

You can think of a flame as being like a kind of tent. Heat melts the candle’s waxy fuel, and turns it into a gas. This fuel gas floats away from the wick to fill the inside of the flame’s tent.

September 27, 2003

 

Movie Magic

From light saber battles to the sinking of the Titanic, some special effects seem almost magical. Most film makers still use a relatively simple process called matte layering, which involves using a blue or green screen to create images that can be layered to create a composite image.

September 27, 2003

 

Pass the Apples, Adam

Legend has it that when Adam bit into that fateful apple, a piece of it stuck in his throat and became the familiar “Adam’s apple.” But, what does an Adam’s apple really do for you?The Adam’s apple is a prominent bump on a man’s throat. It is caused by the underlying cartilage and ligaments of the larynx or voice box.

September 27, 2003

 

The Other Side of the Universe

Have you ever wondered what’s on the other side of the universe? Well, there are two ways to think about that question. Either the universe ends, which means it’s finite, or else it’s infinite. According to Einstein, the universe is finite.

September 27, 2003

 

Talk Out Your Ears

Did you know that there are creatures that talk through their ears? Find out which animal possesses such a talent on today's Moment of Science.

September 27, 2003

 

Birds of a Feather

The answer is diet. Those species with the most elaborate plumage also have the most diverse and reliable diet: a variety of insects, and fruits rich in complex nutrients. With this reliable food supply, females can raise the hatchlings without help from the males.

September 27, 2003

 

Lava Lamp Physics

t was standard decor for any truly hip abode in the later nineteen sixties, and they’re coming back again. It’s the lava lamp, that eerie, undulating source of light and enlightenment for young adult baby boomers.

September 27, 2003

 

Infants Get Cues From Adult Eyes

Read on to learn about the possibility that infants are interested in the same things as their parents.

September 27, 2003

 

Dogs Can Be Gross

Since dogs descended from wolves, researchers who have studied wolves think that they roll in strong-smelling stuff to mask their scent.

September 27, 2003

 

Agent Orange

This discovery led many scientists to believe that the dioxin content of Agent Orange was responsible for serious diseases suffered by Vietnam Veterans and the Vietnamese people.

September 27, 2003

 

When Winter Is the Best Driving Season

Although ice roads are plowed like regular roads, they offer a different driving experience. Because ice has give, a wave is created under it as the vehicle drives on top.

September 27, 2003

 

Mosquito Repellants–How They Work, and Are They Safe?

What turns the mosquito on are goodies like carbon dioxide, heat, moisture, and lactic acid, which is secreted in sweat. These four elements make our bodies prime targets for the mosquito’s bite.

September 27, 2003

 

When a Boy’s Voice Changes

As a boy goes through adolescence, his secondary sex characteristics develop. One of these characteristics is the rapid growth of the larynx and vocal cords. A boy’s voice deepens as his larynx develops because the bigger the vocal cords, the deeper the voice.

September 27, 2003

 

Ye Olde El Nino

Everybody is familiar with El Nino these days. So how come you only hear about it in our lifetimes? Where was El Nino in the Middle Ages?

September 27, 2003

 

Green Potatoes

The nutritious skin is where a lot of the vitamins are. Important nutrients such as fiber, calcium, iron, and vitamin C are found in the skin. However, you probably didn’t know that potato skins contain poison.

September 27, 2003

 

Mothballs

Thanks to clothes moths and their fabric devouring larvae, your expensive Scottish wool sweater may one day resemble Swiss cheese.

September 27, 2003

 

Creating a Vacuum

Ever wonder how a vacuum cleaner works? Find out on this Moment of Science.

September 27, 2003

 

Fighting Obesity

You’ve probably seen them on “60 Minutes”: 800-pound giants so trapped in fat that they can barely walk. While people that big are a rarity, many Americans do suffer from obesity.

September 27, 2003

 

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All Walks of Life

Is it true that larger birds walk and smaller bird hop?

September 27, 2003

 

Snail Love Darts

No matter the species, mating rituals are pretty weird. Take the praying mantis. After an intimate tryst, the female mantis bites its partner’s head off. But when it comes to sexual hijinks, nothing beats the garden snail. During sex, garden snails often pierce each other with miniature darts. Any way you slice it, garden snail […]

September 27, 2003

 

Bloodshot Eyes

“Bloodshot” is precisely the right term to describe what happens when something irritates the eyes.

September 27, 2003

 

A Healthy Famine?

Suppose you could live a longer, healthier life if you were willing to eat about half what you normally do and spend every day feeling cold and hungry?

September 27, 2003

 

Can the Dead Move?

The chemicals that cause this reaction are stored in our nerve endings, and when we die, they’re gradually released.

September 27, 2003

 

How Two-way Mirrors Work

Like all mirrors, two-way mirrors have a reflective coating. However, while the reflecting coating on regular mirrors is dense and returns all the light that strikes its surface, the reflective coating on two-way mirrors is more sparse.

September 27, 2003

 

A Cooler for the Sahara

Produce from family farm plots lasts much longer than before, meaning that families don’t need to send girls out every day to sell produce, but can send them to school instead.

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