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Aug 1

Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Québec, Canada

(Source: harrycutiepie)

Aug 1
mindblowingscience:

This is the worst Ebola outbreak in history. Here’s why you should be worried.

By Ishaan Tharoor July 28 at 2:12 PM
The worst Ebola outbreak in history has put a number of countries in West Africa in lockdown, led to the deaths of nearly 700 people since February and brought new reports of doctors, including Americans, contracting the virus they are attempting to contain. The situation is undeniably scary. Here’s what you need to know.
What is Ebola?
Ebola viral disease is a highly infectious illness with fatality rates up to 90 percent, according to the U.N. World Health Organization. Symptoms initially include a sudden fever as well as joint and muscle aches and then typically progress to vomiting, diarrhea and, in some cases, internal and external bleeding — you can see a full, grim description of symptoms compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) here.
The virus spreads through contact with bodily fluids of someone who is infected. Reports of human infections usually first emerge in remote areas that are in proximity to tropical rain forests, where humans can come into contact with animals such as chimpanzees, gorillas and forest antelope. The consumption of bush meat is often a precursor to such outbreaks. The WHO says fruit bats are probably the natural host for the virus.

Continue Reading.

mindblowingscience:

This is the worst Ebola outbreak in history. Here’s why you should be worried.

 July 28 at 2:12 PM

The worst Ebola outbreak in history has put a number of countries in West Africa in lockdown, led to the deaths of nearly 700 people since February and brought new reports of doctors, including Americans, contracting the virus they are attempting to contain. The situation is undeniably scary. Here’s what you need to know.

What is Ebola?

Ebola viral disease is a highly infectious illness with fatality rates up to 90 percent, according to the U.N. World Health Organization. Symptoms initially include a sudden fever as well as joint and muscle aches and then typically progress to vomiting, diarrhea and, in some cases, internal and external bleeding — you can see a full, grim description of symptoms compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) here.

The virus spreads through contact with bodily fluids of someone who is infected. Reports of human infections usually first emerge in remote areas that are in proximity to tropical rain forests, where humans can come into contact with animals such as chimpanzees, gorillas and forest antelope. The consumption of bush meat is often a precursor to such outbreaks. The WHO says fruit bats are probably the natural host for the virus.

Continue Reading.

Aug 1
currentsinbiology:

Ebola treatments caught in limbo (Nature News)

Doctors have no cure to offer the infected. Understaffed clinics must make do with isolating infected people, finding and quarantining their families, and educating the public on how to avoid spreading the disease. Although several vaccines and treatments for Ebola do exist, they are stalled in various stages of testing owing to a lack of funding and of international demand. Even if they did move forwards, it would be years rather than months before the measures would reach the people in need.
For researchers such as Heinz Feldmann, a virologist at the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) in Hamilton, Montana, the situation seems like it could have been avoided. In 2005, he published a vaccine platform based on vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) that has since yielded an Ebola vaccine that is effective in macaques (T. W. Geisbert et al. PLoS Med. 2, e183; 2005). But money is not available to take the next step — testing the vaccine’s safety in healthy humans, says Feldmann. Compared with malaria or HIV, “Ebola is just not that much of a public-health problem worldwide”, he says, and consequently draws little interest from public or private funders.

currentsinbiology:

Ebola treatments caught in limbo (Nature News)

Doctors have no cure to offer the infected. Understaffed clinics must make do with isolating infected people, finding and quarantining their families, and educating the public on how to avoid spreading the disease. Although several vaccines and treatments for Ebola do exist, they are stalled in various stages of testing owing to a lack of funding and of international demand. Even if they did move forwards, it would be years rather than months before the measures would reach the people in need.

For researchers such as Heinz Feldmann, a virologist at the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) in Hamilton, Montana, the situation seems like it could have been avoided. In 2005, he published a vaccine platform based on vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) that has since yielded an Ebola vaccine that is effective in macaques (T. W. Geisbert et al. PLoS Med. 2, e183; 2005). But money is not available to take the next step — testing the vaccine’s safety in healthy humans, says Feldmann. Compared with malaria or HIV, “Ebola is just not that much of a public-health problem worldwide”, he says, and consequently draws little interest from public or private funders.

Aug 1
mindblowingscience:

STRETCHING TURNS CARBYNE INTO AN INSULATOR

Posted by Mike Williams-RiceonJuly 28, 2014
Applying just the right amount of tension to a chain of carbon atoms can turn it from a metallic conductor to an insulator, report researchers.
Stretching the material known as carbyne—a hard-to-make, one-dimensional chain of carbon atoms—by just 3 percent can begin to change its properties in ways that engineers might find useful for mechanically activated nanoscale electronics and optics.
Until recently, carbyne has existed mostly in theory, though experimentalists have made some headway in creating small samples of the finicky material. The carbon chain would theoretically be the strongest material ever, if only someone could make it reliably.
The first-principle calculations by Rice University theoretical physicist Boris Yakobson and his coauthors, postdoctoral researcher Vasilii Artyukhov and graduate student Mingjie Liu, show that stretching carbon chains activates the transition from conductor to insulator by widening the material’s band gap.
Band gaps, which free electrons must overcome to complete a circuit, give materials the semiconducting properties that make modern electronics possible.

Continue Reading.

mindblowingscience:

STRETCHING TURNS CARBYNE INTO AN INSULATOR

Posted by onJuly 28, 2014

Applying just the right amount of tension to a chain of carbon atoms can turn it from a metallic conductor to an insulator, report researchers.

Stretching the material known as carbyne—a hard-to-make, one-dimensional chain of carbon atoms—by just 3 percent can begin to change its properties in ways that engineers might find useful for mechanically activated nanoscale electronics and optics.

Until recently, carbyne has existed mostly in theory, though experimentalists have made some headway in creating small samples of the finicky material. The carbon chain would theoretically be the strongest material ever, if only someone could make it reliably.

The first-principle calculations by Rice University theoretical physicist Boris Yakobson and his coauthors, postdoctoral researcher Vasilii Artyukhov and graduate student Mingjie Liu, show that stretching carbon chains activates the transition from conductor to insulator by widening the material’s band gap.

Band gaps, which free electrons must overcome to complete a circuit, give materials the semiconducting properties that make modern electronics possible.

Continue Reading.

Aug 1

crookedindifference:

Happy 56th Anniversary NASA

Aug 1

thefallingtower:

tamorapierce:

doctorscienceknowsfandom:

anatsuno:

navalenigma:

shayvaalski:

friendlycloud:

agewa:

“We went to Kineshma, that’s in Ivanovo region, to visit his parents. I went as a heroine and I never expected someone to welcome me, a front-line girl, like that. We’ve gone through so much, we’ve saved lives, lifes of mothers, wives. And then… I heard accusations, I was bad-mouthed. Before that I’ve only ever been “dear sister”… We had tea and my husband’s mother took him aside and started crying: “Who did you marry? A front-line girl… You have two younger sisters. Who’s going to marry them now?” When I think back to that moment I feel tears welling up. Imagine: I had a record, I loved it a lot. There was a song, it said: you have the right to wear the best shoes. That was about a front-line girl. I had it playing, and [his?] elder sister came up and broke it apart, saying: you have no rights. They destroyed all my photos from the war… We, front-line girls, went through so much during hte war… and then we had another war. Another terrible war. The men left us, they didn’t cover our backs. Not like at the front.” from С.Алексеевич “У войны не женское лицо”

In Soviet Union women participating in WWII were erased from history, remaining as the occasional anecdote of a female sniper or simply as medical staff or, at best, radio specialists. The word “front-line girl” (frontovichka) became a terrible insult, synonimous to “whore”. Hundreds thousand of girls who went to war to protect their homeland with their very lives, who came back injured or disabled, with medals for valor, had to hide it to protect themselves from public scorn. 

This has always happened in history: Women do something important. Then they get shamed for it (so nobody will talk about it) and it gets erased from history.

And then certain men will say: “Women suck, they’ve never done anything important.”

Look into history and learn that women have played a far greater role then douches (present and past) wanted you to know.

Hey Will (and Jack) I got you something.

So this is important. Let me tell you a story.

All the time I spend debating about women in combat, I’ve picked up on a trend that disturbs me. Supporting or attacking, people are quick to draw on biology, psychology, law, but very rarely - almost never - do I hear about the history of women in combat, and the evidence their service lends to this debate.

Hundreds of thousands of women faced combat in WW2, and on both sides, and on all fronts, and it is a history that has been almost completely erased from contemporary awareness. I have been given arguments about how women can not psychologically handle combat. And about how women in mixed-gender combat units will automatically disrupt group cohesion - the brotherhood, if you will. Both of these assertions are erasure.

Women have not lived in a protective bubble untouched by combat for all of history. Women have been killed, wounded, and captured in combat, and tortured after. We are not living a world where these are hypothetical situations women have yet to prove they can handle. Unfortunately, they have, they can, in the future, they probably will, again and again. Soviet women served as partisans, snipers, tank drivers, fighter pilots, bombers. And more.

Both British and American women served in mixed-gender AA units. I could drag you through several examples of British women performing exemplarily despite being wounded, or seeing their comrades die. The Luftwaffe did not discriminate. Between the British and the Americans, it was determined that mixed gender units actually performed much better than all male units, because of teamwork. Because women are better and certain tasks, men are better at certain tasks, and at other tasks they are comparably efficient, and in a team, hopefully, in combat, you let the best do what they are best at. For the most part, they were proud to serve together. 

German propaganda never commented on the British AA units, but they thoroughly smeared the Soviet fighting woman - flitenweiber. People often argue with me that women are a threat to group cohesion because men naturally give women preferential treatment. Which certainly explains why men are more likely to survive shipwrecks. And history shows us that Germans soldiers had no chivalrous compunction when it came to shooting captured Soviet women who were armed.

We’re fed a history of war that almost exclusively features white male figures, most of whom fit into this destructive constructed myth of the soldier that is somehow both chivalrous and charmingly womanizing and who’s sense of brotherhood is unshakably dependent on the band being all man. There is no history of woman at war, none. I hear a lot about how women have no upper body strength, I hear nothing about the Front-Line Female Comrade.

THE WORD FRONTOVICHKA BECAME A TERRIBLE INSULT - are you fucking kidding me? Fuck, that made me cry. At first when I started reading I thought I was reading alernate history fiction. I’m ashamed to be ignorant about this, and full of rage and much worse bitter shame that this history is constantly repressed, suppressed, hidden. WHAT THE FUCK. D: D: D:

I didn’t know that bit about the AA (Anti-Aircraft) units.

And even in this article I don’t see a mention of the women of the Israeli Army, or women of the resistance if we’re just sticking to WWII.  I didn’t know about the Russian soldiers, only the fighter pilots, the night witches, and I’ve spent years poking into the corners of history trying to find women who will serve as ammunition when men tell me women can’t fight. 

The best explanation I’ve heard of what happened to women after WWII comes from “A League of Their Own,” the publicist’s character: “What is this—the war is over, Rosie, turn in your rivets?”  Women all over the world had to step into the same old ruts.

I don’t think it’s any mistake at all that Betty Friedan wrote her ground-breaking text for the second wave of feminism, THE FEMININE MYSTIQUE, just 10 years after WWII, after women had dined on a full plate of the same old, same old.

And shame on the men who never stood up for the women who worked and fought beside them, and saved their lives.

There were Soviet AA units that absolutely wrecked the Nazis on several occasions. I was reading about them recently because the most recent Jucifer album has some pieces about them. and women in WWII in general.

(Source: bukhanka)

Aug 1

Future Missions For Venus

christinetheastrophysicist:

Venus is considered to be Earth’s sister planet. They are of similar size and have a similar composition. But Venus is not studied as much as the other planets. In order to learn more about our neighboring planet, NASA started the Venus Exploration Analysis Group (VEXAG). Their purpose is to identify scientific and mission goals for Venus.

In the reports released by VEXAG, some scientific goals listed include understanding the formation and evolution of Venus’ atmosphere, determine the surface and interior structure, and learn whether liquid water ever existed on the planet.

In addition to scientific goals, the reports also identify potential missions. These would include an orbiter with radar imaging capabilities to study the atmosphere and a short-duration lander to study the local geology.

The reports can be found on the VEXAG website.

Aug 1

assbutt-in-the-garrison:

thatsprettyillegalevenforus:

"August 1st, 2014."

uh oh

paeoniadrop:

A beginner’s guide to hand sewing. These are the basic stitches that I use for my art dolls

paeoniadrop:

A beginner’s guide to hand sewing. These are the basic stitches that I use for my art dolls

mindblowingscience:

Blood Test Could Detect A Genetic Tendency Toward Suicide

By Loren Grush Posted 07.30.2014 at 12:01 am
When it comes to fighting suicide, knowing who is at risk can be tricky and, moreover, a very subjective process. Scientists at Johns Hopkins Medicine are trying to bring a level of objectivity into the search for those at high risk of attempting suicide – in the form of a simple blood test.
In a new study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, researchers say they have found something of a common denominator in people who have committed suicide or those with suicidal thoughts or attempts. The key? A unique genetic mutation in the gene SKA2, which is thought to play an important role in the way our brains handle stress. Not everyone at risk of suicide has the genetic signature, but when people do have this mutation, their likelihood of attempting suicide was found to be extremely high compared to the rest of the population.
“SKA2 has been implicated as important for the normal function of stress receptors,” said study leader Zachary Kaminsky, an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “It chaperones them, and it goes up when glucocorticoid binds to these receptors, which happens when you get stressed out.”

Continue Reading.

mindblowingscience:

Blood Test Could Detect A Genetic Tendency Toward Suicide

By Loren Grush Posted 07.30.2014 at 12:01 am

When it comes to fighting suicide, knowing who is at risk can be tricky and, moreover, a very subjective process. Scientists at Johns Hopkins Medicine are trying to bring a level of objectivity into the search for those at high risk of attempting suicide – in the form of a simple blood test.

In a new study published in the American Journal of Psychiatryresearchers say they have found something of a common denominator in people who have committed suicide or those with suicidal thoughts or attempts. The key? A unique genetic mutation in the gene SKA2, which is thought to play an important role in the way our brains handle stress. Not everyone at risk of suicide has the genetic signature, but when people do have this mutation, their likelihood of attempting suicide was found to be extremely high compared to the rest of the population.

“SKA2 has been implicated as important for the normal function of stress receptors,” said study leader Zachary Kaminsky, an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “It chaperones them, and it goes up when glucocorticoid binds to these receptors, which happens when you get stressed out.”

Continue Reading.