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All The Blog Posts

Seth Shostak

Hollywood Aliens: Prototypes for the Real Thing?

Seth Shostak | Posted May 29, 2012

As spring eases into summer, the multiplexes are witnessing an all-out alien assault. Within the space of a month, silver screens have shown ships of the U.S. Navy belching ordnance at invading extraterrestrials in Battleship; portrayed black-garbed government agents keeping tabs on ornery aliens in Men in Black III; and...

Jamil Zaki

Failing to Understand the Social Sciences

Jamil Zaki | Posted May 29, 2012

Gary Gutting's recent piece in the New York Times "Opinionator" blog ("How Reliable are the Social Sciences?" May 17th, 2012) argues that fields such as economics, psychology, and sociology (1) fail to contribute "real" data of the kind produced by the natural sciences, (2) explain information that already...

Dr. Arturo Casadevall

The Health of Science

Dr. Arturo Casadevall | Posted May 29, 2012

How healthy is science today? Well, the report is mixed. On one hand, we are witnessing tremendous scientific progress. We often take past achievements for granted -- cell phones and GPS, the explosion of the digital revolution, the eradication of smallpox, jet planes and the green revolution, which has greatly...

Lawrence M. Krauss

Does Religious Liberty Equal Freedom to Discriminate?

Lawrence M. Krauss | Posted May 29, 2012

I happened to leave the country on the day that President Obama made his historical statement that he was in favor of same-sex marriage. I had expected his statement to ruffle feathers from those who found such partnerships difficult to reconcile with their religious beliefs, but I arrived back to...

Wray Herbert

Dreadful Deaths: Cycling Through Fear

Wray Herbert | Posted May 29, 2012

Almost 3,000 people died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That includes the victims in or near the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and all the passengers in the four commandeered jets, including the flight that went down in rural Pennsylvania. But it does not include the many hidden victims of...

Kristin Beale

Maximizing Reproduction: How Flowers Do It

Kristin Beale | Posted May 29, 2012

This past Mother's Day, Americans spent approximately $18.6 billion on gifts for mom. The gift of choice? Flowers -- $2.2 billion dollars worth. It doesn't seem likely that during this flower frenzy many shoppers thought about how many species of flowers exist or how they've become so successful...