Science

The Chewing Sound and the Fury

What if small, everyday noises ruined your life?

What if small, everyday noises ruined your life?

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The New Puritans

When did liberals become so uptight?

When I read last month that voters in Portland, Oregon, had defeated a bill that would have fluoridated their drinking water, I was reminded of my first experience with an anti-fluoridation wacko. Jeffrey lived three houses down from me when I was a child. He was in his forties, lived at home with his mother, and did not work. I suppose that today he would be diagnosed as a highly functioning autistic. He was bright but very awkward.

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There’s been a lot of chatter these past few weeks about an Atlantic article by Jean Twenge called “How Long Can You Wait to Have a Baby?” In it she debunks some of the research underlying the claim that women’s fertility declines steeply after 35. (The killer point: the main data set is “French birth records from 1670 to 1830.”) Good for her! Would that there were more biostatisticians out there holding studies up to scrutiny, doing God’s work.

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The Volume-Driven Life

Imagine how much happier you’d be if you could just adjust the sound

Imagine how much happier you’d be if you could just adjust the sound.

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Jesus and Moses Went on Cleanses

That doesn't mean you should

Scientifically sound resolution: Avoid this idiotic modern craze

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Explaining the Global Warming Hiatus

Grappling with climate-change nuance in a toxic political environment

Its a climate-change mystery: As global warming has plateaued, scientists are more certain than ever about the long term trend. But where did the heat go?

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ADHD meds like Ritalin, Adderall, Concerta, and Vyvanse have been called "smart pills" for their ability to bestow superhuman powers of concentration. In the U.S. especially, where about 11 percent of schoolchildren have an ADHD diagnosis, parents and teachers embrace the drugs as a way to get kids to sit still and pay attention.

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The Supreme Court decided today that human gene sequences cannot be patented, invalidating some of Myriad Genetics's patent claims on the breast cancer genes BRCA1 and BRCA2. But it was only a partial victory for scientists and patients' rights advocates—the Court upheld the company's patents on the cDNA versions of those genes. What's cDNA? Clearly the Court doesn't understand, or else wouldn't have made such a ruling. 

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The Lethality of Loneliness

We now know how it can ravage our body and brain

For the first time in history, we understand how isolation can ravage the body and brain. Now, what should we do about it?

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I don’t have a whole lot in common with Angelina Jolie, but we do share a terrifying family history of breast cancer. Like Jolie, I lost my mother to cancer—mine at 49, Jolie’s at 56. Also like Jolie, I decided to have the genetic test for the BRCA1 and 2 mutations, which, if present, indicate a severely increased risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer over a lifetime.

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