Science & Technology

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After Months Of Study, NC Zoo Elephants Form A Herd

Jul 29, 2016
NC Zoo

Five of the African elephants at the North Carolina Zoo have formed a herd, according to zoo officials.

This comes after staffers spent months studying the behavior of each elephant and observing how they interact with each other.

An image of former DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz
AP images

Last week, WikiLeaks made thousands of emails public that showcased communication between top members of the Democratic National Committee. The leaked emails suggest  top D.N.C officials supported Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton above Senator Bernie Sanders during the primaries.

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© 2016 Deborah Samuel

Photographer Deborah Samuel began her latest project after experiencing a series of profound losses, of family and other loved ones.

“It seems that as soon as one left, the next one came up, and it was even worse,” she says. One afternoon, sitting in her backyard and watching the birds fly, she was overcome by their elegance and freedom. That’s when she knew: “I had to find that beauty again.”

Should we be protecting historic sites in space?

Jul 25, 2016
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NASA

Nearly 47 years ago, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin emerged from Apollo 11 and became the first humans to set foot on the moon. In addition to leaving their iconic footprints, the crew left equipment and memorabilia scattered on the lunar surface. 

Archaeologist Beth O’Leary says that the landing area constitutes an archaeology site that should be preserved. 

This is how radically unrecognizable life might be on other planets

Jul 24, 2016

Researchers have found that Saturn’s moon Titan could have the right chemical conditions to create precursors to life, although the chemistry — based on hydrogen cyanide and a molecule called polyimine — wouldn’t lead to life as we know it here on Earth.

Does human specimen research always need consent?

Jul 24, 2016

Should scientists be allowed to study your biological specimens — such as blood, urine or tissue samples — if you haven’t expressly given them permission?

What if the samples were left over from a doctor’s visit or a different study that you did consent to, and stripped of information that would identify you? 

Will heat waves cause more deaths as the climate warms?

Jul 23, 2016

In June, a heat wave in the American southwest sent the mercury soaring over 115 degrees in parts of Arizona. At least four deaths were linked to that heat wave.

Considering that 2016 is predicted to be the hottest year on record worldwide, and that last month was declared the hottest June on record in the United States, how could climate change influence the number of heat-related deaths we see?

Predicting the Future of Robotics

Jul 23, 2016

The Shocking Behavior of Leaping Eels

Jul 23, 2016

The Women Who Brought Us Apollo 11

Jul 23, 2016

The Women Who Brought Us Apollo 11

Jul 22, 2016

The Shocking Behavior of Leaping Eels

Jul 22, 2016

Life in the Wrong Political Bubble

Jul 22, 2016

Building Better Violins…With Science

Jul 13, 2016

Checking In on Our Planetary Neighbors

Jul 13, 2016
two 23-year-old women play Pokemon GO
Elizabeth Baier / WUNC

Hundreds of Pokémon Go fans swarmed the Durham Bulls Ballpark and nearby American Tobacco on Tuesday, intent on using their phones to catch as many of the exotic monsters as possible.

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Wikimedia Commons

First, don’t call them “octopi.” That is incorrect. The correct plural is octopuses or, more infrequently, octopodes.

Second, an octopus’ eight appendages are called arms, not tentacles.

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Wikimedia Commons

If you’ve ever been bitten by a Bullet Ant, then you’ve experienced a “pure, intense, brilliant pain. Like walking over flaming charcoal with a three-inch nail embedded in your heel.”

Fortunately, you probably have never encountered a Bullet Ant. But Justin O. Schmidt, a biologist at the Southwest Biological Institute has. In fact, he has been bitten and stung close to a thousand times by a wide variety of painful creatures.

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