Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

December 09, 1998
The Teacher Is A Softbot
Meet Steve and Adele, pedagogical agents. These advanced 'softbots' -- robots consisting solely of artificial intelligence software -- are designed to teach human students.

First Robotically-Assisted Heart Bypass Surgery Successfully Performed In United States
A Penn State College of Medicine researcher yesterday performed the first robotically-assisted heart bypass surgery on a 70-year-old female patient at the Penn State Geisinger's Milton S.

Russia Has Designs On Its Astronauts' Used Underwear
Waste-guzzling microbes could help solve one of space travel's most pressing problems: what to do with dirty underwear.

Study Confirms Safety Of Common Heart Drug
A new study headed by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill confirms the safety of digoxin, one of the oldest and most frequently prescribed medicines and the most common digitalis drug for heart failure.

Recycling Of Packaging Yields Environmental Gains
The sorting of packaging waste at source and recycling can lead to increased transport.

Searching For Life On Jupiter's Moon Europa
In an invited talk at the AGU, Christopher Chyba with the SETI Institute and a consulting professor at Stanford will summarize evidence that a liquid ocean exists under the ice crust of the Jovian moon, Europa, and will describe the strawman instrument package that has been proposed for the Europa Orbiter, a NASA mission in the early planning stages, that is scheduled for launch in 2003.

Was The Lack Of Language The Force Of Driving Stone Age Art?
For decades, archaeologists have assumed that cave artists were intelligent and communicative.

Filamentary Structure Of Atmospheric Sprites Confirmed
Stanford researchers have put red sprites under a telescope and found that they consist of thousands of fiery streamers, each only a few meters wide.

New NCAR Climate System Model Shows Earth's Surface Temperature To Rise .2 K Per Decade
The earth's mean surface temperature is expected to rise nearly .2 Kelvin (one-third degree Fahrenheit) per decade over the next four decades, according to a new modeling study using the climate system model (CSM-1) developed at the National Center for Atmospheric Research.

Seismic Math Finds Early Signs Of Heart Tremors
Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are applying the same mathematics used for measuring the earth's seismic activity to finding early signs of heart trouble.

Science Is On The Trail Of Sexual Predators That Dope Women
A new urine test can detect the

International study sheds new light on yreatment of unruptured brain aneurysms
An international study spearheaded at Mayo Clinic has identified new information that will assist physicians in better caring for patients who have unruptured brain aneurysms, a condition that will affect five percent of people in North America and Europe (10-15 million Americans) in their lifetime.

NINDS Awards Almost $24 Million To Support Parkinson's Disease Research Centers Of Excellence
Three top university hospitals will receive a total of almost $24 million from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) to advance understanding of Parkinson's disease and related movement disorders.

Bartenders Breathe Easier After Establishment Of Smoke-Free Bars And Taverns
Bartenders who worked for as little as one month in smoke- free conditions after California law banned smoking in their workplace reported a significant drop in coughing and other respiratory problems and showed improved lung function, according to a new study by researchers at the University of California San Francisco.

Some Smelter Slags Represent A Significant Environmental Hazard
Since the beginning of the industrial age, slag, the glassy material left over when metals are refined from ore, has been considered ugly but harmless.

Recent Trends In Juvenile Crime Policy Are Driven By Fear, Not Fact, Says A National Expert On Juvenile Justice
In a new report released today, December 9, 1998, one of the nation's leading authorities on juvenile justice, Franklin Zimring, says youth policy in the United States is being driven by deeply flawed analyses of juvenile justice.

Study Provides Guidance For Treating Patients With Brain Aneurysms
A new study will help physicians decide how to treat individuals with unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs).
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