Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

February 18, 2006
Computer interface design starts with respecting the real world
Computer interfaces often fall short or even fail, because designers overlook the physical nature of human beings and the real world.

Stanford ethics consulting helps researchers navigate sensitive issues
Few basic-science researchers routinely gather information on the ethical aspects of their work, but a pioneering program at the Stanford University School of Medicine is helping scientists navigate the minefield of sensitive issues surrounding biomedical research.

Intellectual property law and the protection of traditional knowledge
Detractors of current patent systems say that the traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples and local communities does not readily fit into the existing rules of the industrialized world.

Stanford Q&A: Neuroethicist on growing demand for ethical oversight
New ways of peering into the brain raise ethical questions about how research involving these technologies should be conducted.

There's something fishy about human brain evolution
Forget the textbook story about tool use and language sparking the dramatic evolutionary growth of the human brain.

Ernst Mayr's theory illustrated in genetic epidemiology studies
An evolutionary and population biologist at Washington University in St.

Making school-university partnerships a success
It is very common for cities to declare their intent to become the next telecommunications corridor, biotechnology hub, or some other kind of technological center.

Stanford scholar, aka NPR's 'Math Guy,' explains changing nature of mathematical proof
On Feb. 18, Keith Devlin will reveal how mathematicians know what they know.

U of M researcher simluate characteristics of planetary cores
University of Minnesota researchers Renata Wentzcovitch and Koichiro Umemoto and Philip B.

Science education lacks a good narrative
There is a good story behind science, but no one is telling it in American classrooms.

Search for alien life challenges current concepts, says U. of Colorado prof.
For scientists eying distant planets and solar systems for signs of alien activity, University of Colorado at Boulder Professor Carol Cleland suggests the first order of business is to keep an open mind.

Astronomer announces shortlist of stellar candidates for habitable worlds
In the search for life on other worlds, scientists can listen for radio transmissions from stellar neighborhoods where intelligent civilizations might lurk or they can try to actually spot planets like our own in habitable zones around nearby stars.

Early humans on the menu
You wouldn't know it by current world events, but humans actually evolved to be peaceful, cooperative and social animals, not the predators of modern mythology would have us believe, says an anthropologist at Washington University in St.

Marine mammals are on the frontline of failing ocean health
At the AAAS Annual Meeting press conference, researchers disscuss new links between land-based pollution and diseases in marine mammals, with implications for human health.

Toxic waves
According to new statistics, 2005 was the second deadliest on record for Florida's endangered manatees.

Computer interface design starts with respecting the real world
To this day the Palm Pilot is a successful design of human and computer interaction that remains all too rare, says Stanford computer science Assistant Professor Scott Klemmer.

Besides food, farming can provide wildlife habitat and reduce global warming
When people hear the word

The changing nature of proof
Thomas C. Hales, the University of Pittsburgh Mellon Professor of Mathematics who famously proved Johannes Kepler's conjecture on the stacking of spheres, will discuss his current project to

Pennsylvania tackles nano engineering education
From medicine to materials and manufacturing, nanotechnology is today's watchword but what we do with these new technologies depends on people, and Pennsylvania is leading the way in training nanotechnologists at all levels for all types of nanotech.

Buyer beware: Online shopping hazards detailed by UMass Amherst computer scientist
Consumers who shop online may be risking their privacy with every purchase, contends University of Massachusetts Amherst computer scientist Kevin Fu.

Carnegie Mellon researcher leads team working to create methanol fuel cell
Carnegie Mellon's Prashant Kumta and his group are developing nanostructural catalyst compositions using novel chemistry methods that exhibit excellent catalyticactivity compared to conventional standards catalysts.

Amazonian terra preta can transform poor soil into fertile
Some of the globe's richest soil -- known as terra preta, or Amazonian dark earths -- can transform poor soil into highly fertile ground.

Mathematics in fact and fiction discussed at AAAS Annual Meeting
For 2,000 years, mathematicians seemed pretty secure in their pursuit of truth.

Modern mathematical proofs changing due to collaborations, computers
A Missouri mathematician believes that the state's moniker has great bearing on the status of modern mathematical proofs: Show me. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to