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 . . . >>

mercoledì 9 agosto 2017

# s-phyto: mRNA instability may facilitate rapid recovery of plants after stressful events

<< Stress recovery may prove to be a promising approach to increase plant performance, and theoretically, mRNA instability may facilitate faster recovery.   Transcriptome (RNA-seq, qPCR, sRNA-seq, PARE) and methylome profiling during repeated excess-light stress and recovery was performed at intervals as short as three minutes >>

AA << demonstrate that 87% of the stress-upregulated mRNAs analysed exhibit very rapid recovery >>

Peter Alexander Crisp, Diep Ganguly, et al.  Rapid recovery gene downregulation during excess-light stress and recovery in Arabidopsis. The Plant Cell Publ. July 2017 doi: 10.1105/tpc.16.00828

martedì 8 agosto 2017

# s-esobio: self-assembled azotosomes by convective activity, a kind of proto-life on Titan.

<< vinyl cyanide (C2H3CN; also known as acrylonitrile or propenenitrile) would be the best candidate species for the formation of (..) cell-like membranes, known as “azotosomes” >>

AA << report the first spectroscopic detection of vinyl cyanide in Titan’s atmosphere, obtained using archival data from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), collected from February to May 2014 >>

AA << detect the three strongest rotational lines of C2H3CN in the frequency range of 230 to 232 GHz, each with >4σ confidence >>

the << production rate of vinyl cyanide and its saturation mole fraction imply the availability of sufficient dissolved material to form ~107 cell membranes/cm3 in Titan’s sea Ligeia Mare (Titan's second largest liquid body) >>

<< Reactions of hydrocarbons with hydrogen, both readily available on Titan, release energy, which could provide support for methanogenic life. The sedimentation time of atmospheric organics depends on the particle size and convective activity in the troposphere. This coupling of Titan’s atmosphere and surface completes the picture regarding the astrobiological importance of (..) detection of vinyl cyanide in Titan’s middle/upper atmosphere >>

Maureen Y. Palmer, Martin A. Cordiner, et al. ALMA detection and astrobiological potential of vinyl cyanide on Titan. Science Advances  28 Jul 2017: Vol. 3, no. 7, e1700022
doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1700022

lunedì 7 agosto 2017

# s-evol: a noise effect inside: new species pulsating by chance instead of ...

<< W. Andrew Barr, a visiting assistant professor of anthropology, published a report that says it's possible the pulse of new species could have occurred by chance and might not be directly related to climate change >>

Researcher's paper challenges the claim that the genus Homo originated in response to environmental changes. Aug 4, 2017

W. Andrew Barr. Signal or noise? A null model method for evaluating the significance of turnover pulses. Paleobiology 2017 doi: 10.1017/pab.2017.21 Publ. online: 31 July 2017


<< "Nell' Arte tutto e', o dovrebbe essere, un esperimento". Gill Evans. >>

2127 - enigmistiche tonalita'. March 23, 2007

sabato 5 agosto 2017

# s-phys: nanoquakes: driving them by phononic crystals

<< the extreme frequency sound waves - also known as surface acoustic waves [SAW] or 'nanoquakes' , as they run across the surface of a solid material in a similar manner to earthquake tremors on land >>

<< Although surface acoustic waves form a key component of a host of technologies, they have proved extremely difficult to control with any degree of accuracy >>

[AA] << have developed a new type of structure, known as a ' phononic crystal,' which when patterned into a device, can be used to steer and guide the nanoquakes >>

Riding the wave: Pioneering research tames nanoquakes. Aug 2, 2017

<< Phononic crystals can control the propagation of SAW, analogous to photonic crystals, enabling components such as waveguides and cavities >>

B. J. Ash, S. R. Worsfold, et al. A highly attenuating and frequency tailorable annular hole phononic crystal for surface acoustic waves.  Nature Communications 8, Article number: 174 (2017)  doi:10.1038/s41467-017-00278-0

giovedì 3 agosto 2017

# s-esobio: seeking a new "planetary protection officer"

<< Nasa is seeking a new "planetary protection officer" tasked with defending the earth from alien life >>

<< It is not a new idea - the original United Nations treaty on space exploration, signed in 1967, called for space-faring nations to take care about contaminants >>

Planetary protection officer wanted, generous salary. BBC. 02 Aug 2017

<< The mission of the Office of Planetary Protection is to promote the responsible exploration of the solar system by implementing and developing efforts that protect the science, explored environments, and Earth >>

About Planetary Protection. Aug 3, 2017

<< Degree: physical science, engineering, or mathematics that included 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science such as mechanics, dynamics, properties of materials, and electronics >>

FonT: nella lista dei requisiti desiderabili non sono contemplate le lauree in biologia, biochimica ...

"physical science"

mercoledì 2 agosto 2017

# s-gst: the importance of noise (transcriptional noise) in stem cell. dev., by Wolf et al.

<< Random differences between cells early in development could be the key to making different cells in the body, according to new research from a team co-led by Professor Wolf Reik >>

<< when cells start specialising into different cell types their gene activity becomes more 'noisy' - each cell starts to turn different groups of genes on or off >>

Noise helps cells make decisions: Team reveals the importance of genetic noise in development. Aug 1, 2017

AA << study systematically charts transcriptional noise and uncovers molecular processes associated with early lineage decisions >>

Hisham Mohammed, Irene Hernando-Herraez, et al. Single-Cell Landscape of Transcriptional Heterogeneity and Cell Fate Decisions during Mouse Early Gastrulation. Cell Reports , Volume 20 , Issue 5 , 1215 - 1228 doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2017.07.009 Publ. Aug 1, 2017

martedì 1 agosto 2017

# s-astro: cosmic nomads, transfers, impacts

a) cosmic nomads

Lee Billings. Wandering in the Void, Billions of Rogue Planets without a Home. New results suggest free-floating giant planets are less common than previously believed, but hint at vast numbers of smaller castaway worlds. July 24, 2017

b) cosmic transfers

Ashley Yeager. Half of the Milky Way comes from other galaxies
Simulations suggest that galactic winds blew the material in from elsewhere. July 26, 2017

Daniel Angles-Alcazar
Claude-Andre Faucher-Giguere
et al. The cosmic baryon cycle and galaxy mass assembly in the FIRE simulations. Mon Not R Astron Soc (2017) 470 (4): 4698-4719. doi: 10.1093/mnras/stx1517
Publ. June 20, 2017

c) cosmic impacts

Jenny Wells. Evidence of impacts that structured the Milky Way galaxy. July 18, 2017

Deborah Ferguson, Susan Gardner, Brian Yanny. Milky Way Tomography with K and M Dwarf Stars: The Vertical Structure of the Galactic Disk. The American Astronomical Society. The Astrophysical Journal, Volume 843, Number 2 . Publ. July 14, 2017.