sabato 19 agosto 2017

# phyto: feel sounds to spot water

AA << used the model plant Pisum sativum to investigate the mechanism by which roots sense and locate water >>

AA << found that roots were able to locate a water source by sensing the vibrations generated by water moving inside pipes, even in the absence of substrate moisture. When both moisture and acoustic cues were available, roots preferentially used moisture in the soil over acoustic vibrations, suggesting that acoustic gradients enable roots to broadly detect a water source at a distance, while moisture gradients help them to reach their target more accurately >>

AA << results also showed that the presence of noise affected the abilities of roots to perceive and respond correctly to the surrounding soundscape >>

Monica Gagliano, Mavra Grimonprez, et al. Tuned in: plant roots use sound to locate water. Oecologia. Volume 184, Issue 1, pp 151–160. May 2017

venerdì 18 agosto 2017

# websec: everyone is a target (N3v$r M1^d!), by Kevin

<< At the end of the day, Cardwell [Kevin Cardwell] notes that "no product will make you secure." What's important is setting up a process of defenses because he says, "everyone is a target." >>

Leah Becerra. How to protect your data from cyberattacks. The Kansas City Star. May 25, 2017


<< “Much of what I did I now regret,” Burr [Bill Burr], who is now retired, told the Wall Street Journal. “In the end, it was probably too complicated for a lot of folks to understand very well, and the truth is, it was barking up the wrong tree.” >>

James Titcomb. Password guru who told the world to make them complicated admits: I got it completely wrong. 8 Aug 8, 2017

Robert McMillan. The Man Who Wrote Those Password Rules Has a New Tip: N3v$r M1^d! Aug. 7, 2017

giovedì 17 agosto 2017

# s-acad: the nomad razor by Richard

<< Over drinks one evening, a Christian journalist described witnessing an episode of faith healing. Instead of dismissing the story outright, Dawkins pressed for details >>

<< Some people define atheism as a positive conviction that there are no gods and agnosticism as allowing for the possibility, however slight. In this sense I am agnostic, as any scientist would be. But only in the same way I am agnostic about leprechauns and fairies. Other people define agnosticism as the belief that the existence of gods is as probable as their nonexistence.  In this sense I am certainly not agnostic >> Richard Dawkins

John  Horgan.  Richard Dawkins Offers Advice for Donald Trump, and Other Wisdom. Aug 10, 2017.

mercoledì 16 agosto 2017

# s-behav: they behave strangely in the darkness caused by a solar eclipse

<< Many accounts of solar eclipses include tales of animals behaving strangely >>

<< There’s a lot of anecdotal evidence for how animals and even plants respond to totality [of solar eclipses] >>

<< Crickets chirped and frogs croaked [..]  Gnats and mosquitoes swarmed [..] Bees returned to hives and chickens to roost >>

<< small, light-sensitive crustaceans and zooplankton swam upward toward the dark during eclipses, similar to how the tiny animals behave at night >>

<< The sun’s disappearance prompted orb weaver spiders to take down their webs >>

<< captive chimpanzees scaled a climbing structure and faced the blocked sun >>

Lisa Grossman. What do plants and animals do during an eclipse?
A citizen science project aims to gather data to put science behind anecdotal evidence. Aug 12, 2017

<< The behavior of colonial orb-weaving spiders (Metepeira incrassata) in tropical Veracruz, Mexico was studied during the total solar eclipse on July 11, 1991. Spiders behaved in a manner typical of daily activity until totality, when many began taking down webs. After solar reappearance, most spiders that had begun taking down webs rebuilt them >>

Uetz, G.W., Hieber, C.S., et al.     Behavior of Colonial Orb-weaving Spiders during a Solar Eclipse. Ethology, 96: 24–32. Jan 12, 1994. doi:10.1111/j.1439-0310.1994.tb00878.x

<< This year, the California Academy of Sciences is soliciting citizen scientists to record their observations of any animals they see using the academy’s iNaturalist app >>

Solar Eclipse 2017: Life Responds.

domenica 13 agosto 2017

# n-soc: charlottesville, what to do now, by Jeffrey

<< The question is: what to do now? The answer lies in the source of the problem. The huge mess began with bad ideas. The only means available – and it is the most powerful – is to fight bad ideas with good ideas. >>

<< What are those good ideas?  The progress of the last 500 years shows us precisely what the good ideas are: social harmony, human rights, the aspiration of universal dignity, the conviction that we can work together in mutual advantage, the market economy as a means of peace and prosperity, and, above all else, the beauty and magnificence of the idea of liberty itself. >>

Jeffrey A. Tucker. The Violence in Charlottesville. Aug 12, 2017


# n-laws: nashville looks back. Apr 8, 2016.

sabato 12 agosto 2017

# s-evol: nomadic pulses: when dinosaurs ruled the earth, they took to the skies ...

<< New fossil discoveries show that prehistoric “squirrels” glided through forests at least 160 million years ago, long before scientists had thought >>

<< In a study published on Wednesday, a team of paleontologists added some particularly fascinating new creatures to the Mesozoic Menagerie. These mammals did not lurk in the shadows of dinosaurs >>

Carl Zimmer. When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth, Mammals Took to the Skies. August 9, 2017

<< Two new eleutherodonts from the Late Jurassic period have skin membranes and skeletal features that are adapted for gliding >>

Qing-Jin Meng,David M. Grossnickle, et al. New gliding mammaliaforms from the Jurassic. Nature  (2017) doi:10.1038/nature23476 Publ. Aug 09, 2017

giovedì 10 agosto 2017

# s-gst: they take decisions in a way that is not necessarily uniform (jazzy? funky? fuzzy?)

AA << found that fate decision is not a unique programmed event, but the result of a very dynamic process composed of spontaneous fluctuation and selective stabilisation of alternative cellular states >>

<< The whole process is reminiscent of trial-and-error learning in which each cell explores—at its own rhythm and independently of cell division—different molecular possibilities (i.e. different genes turned on or off) before reaching a stable combination of active genes and the corresponding morphology >>

AA << observed that some cells seem to "hesitate" and change morphology many times before reaching a stable state >>

Which type of cell to become: Decision through indecision.
July 27, 2017

<< Individual cells take lineage commitment decisions in a way that is not necessarily uniform >>

AA << identifies a new category of cells with fluctuating phenotypic characteristics, demonstrating the complexity of the fate decision process >>

Alice Moussy, Jérémie Cosette, et al. Integrated time-lapse and single-cell transcription studies highlight the variable and dynamic nature of human hematopoietic cell fate commitment. PLoS Biol 15(7): e2001867 doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2001867


in pratica un lancio di dadi, ... quasi.

<< Amico, qualunque  cosa suonerai . . . >>