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În acestă categorie publicăm regulat cele mai importante ştiri din ştiinţă şi tehnologie în limba engleză.
Ştirile sunt preluate de pe site-uri de prestigiu în limba engleză, pentru care avem drept de republicare.

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The inventor at rest, with a Tesla coil (thanks to a double exposure). Dickenson V. Alley, Wellcome Collection, CC BY

Richard Gunderman, Indiana University

Match the following figures – Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Guglielmo Marconi, Alfred Nobel and Nikola Tesla – with these biographical facts:

  • Spoke eight languages
  • Produced the first motor that ran on AC current
  • Developed the underlying technology for wireless communication over long distances
  • Held approximately 300 patents
  • Claimed to have developed a “superweapon” that would end all war

The match for each, of course, is Tesla. Surprised? Most people have heard his name, but few know much about his place in modern science and technology.

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Rural China sheds light on the role of witchcraft in society. Ruth Mace, Author provided

Ruth Mace, UCL

From medieval witch hunts in Europe to contemporary “witch doctors” in Tanzania, belief in witchcraft has existed across human societies throughout history. Anthropologists have long been fascinated by the phenomenon, but have struggled to study it with quantitative methods – our understanding of how and why it arises is therefore poor.

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Augmented warrior. U.S. Army/Flickr, CC BY

Gérard Dubey, Télécom École de Management – Institut Mines-Télécom

What exactly do we mean by an “enhanced” human? When this possibility is brought up, what is generally being referred to is the addition of human and machine-based performances (expanding on the figure of the cyborg popularised by science fiction). But enhanced in relation to what? According to which reference values and criteria? How, for example, can happiness be measured? A good life? Sensations, like smells or touch which connect us to the world? How happy we feel when we are working? All these dimensions that make life worth living. We must be careful here not to give in to the magic of figures. A plus can hide a minus; something gained may conceal something lost. What is gained or lost, however, is difficult to identify as it is neither quantifiable nor measurable.

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The story of where we come from evolves almost every year. Shutterstock/Eugenio Marongiu

Bernard Wood, George Washington University and Michael Westaway, Griffith University

The question of where we humans come from is one many people ask, and the answer is getting more complicated as new evidence is emerging all the time.

For most of recorded history humankind has been placed on a metaphorical, and sometimes literal, pedestal. Sure, modern humans were flesh and blood like other animals.

But they were regarded as being so special that in the Linnaean taxonomy that prevailed well into the second half of the 20th century they were given their own family, the Hominidae.

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Is it just surfing or is it signal processing? dozemode/Pixabay

Patrick Flandrin, ENS Lyon

The notion of “signal processing” might seem like something impenetrably complex, even to scientists. However, the fact is that most of them have already being doing it for a long time, albeit in an unconscious way. Acquiring, shaping and transforming data, cleaning it for the sake of improved analysis and extraction of useful information – all of this is what experimental science is about. And by adding ideas of modelling and algorithms, you can arrive at an ensemble of methods that constitutes a scientific discipline in its own right.

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Daryl O'Connor, University of Leeds

When people experience stress, the adrenal glands that sit on top of the kidneys release a steroid hormone called cortisol. However, our latest study shows that people who have experienced high levels of trauma in childhood, and who have attempted suicide, tend to release less cortisol when put under stress. These findings build on our earlier work that showed that the stress response system may be “faulty” or “damaged” in people who have recently tried to take their own life.

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