Guest Work

Why are most people right handed? The answer may be in the mouths of our ancestors

Guest Work Jan 12, 2017

By Caroline Spry, La Trobe University Roughly 90% of humans are right-handed and this is one of the traits that separates us from most other primates who don’t really show any overall preference for left or right handedness. It’s believed that handedness played an important role in human evolution, with a recent study on the earliest evidence … Read More

GM crops and herbicides: time to reassess risk assessment methods

Guest Work Jan 11, 2017

by Professor Jack Heinemann New studies published by Nature’s journal Scientific Reports are questioning the basis of how to determine the safety of products used in agriculture and at home. The first of these featured reports is on the application of ‘omics’ techniques to a long familiar GM maize line called NK603. The second featured report is on the … Read More

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Go native: why we need ‘wildlife allotments’ to bring species back to the ‘burbs

Guest Work Jan 11, 2017

By Lizzy Lowe, University of Auckland and Margaret Stanley, University of Auckland As urban populations around the globe skyrocket and the demand for housing grows, space is increasingly at a premium in cities. Unfortunately, despite some notable efforts to include green space in cities, native wildlife is not often a priority for urban planners, despite research … Read More

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Weird Science: We believe anything was ‘art’ if we are told it is art

Guest Work Jan 01, 2017

French artist-provocateur Marcel Duchamp may have been on to something when he displayed a commercially-manufactured urinal signed by ‘R. Mutt’ as ‘art’ in his famous 1917 work ‘Fountain’, if a Dutch study published in September is anything to go by. The scientists say that just believing something is ‘art’ can completely change the way we perceive and respond … Read More

Weird Science: We got ship-wrecked after sinking the world’s oldest beer

Guest Work Dec 30, 2016

Yo-ho-ho and a bottle of…beer? It might not be the first thing you’d expect to find in a 220-year-old shipwreck, but that’s what divers pulled from the wreck of the Sydney Cove, one of the first merchant ships to journey to the newly formed colony of Sydney in 1797. For nearly two centuries, bottles of the ancient ale lay buried … Read More

Weird Science: Robot bubs got teen girls pregnant

Guest Work Dec 29, 2016

School-based programs that aim to reduce teen pregnancies by giving girls a ‘robot baby’ to look after, simulating the experience of having a real infant, actually have the opposite effect, Australian scientists announced in August. They found teen girls who cared for a technological tot were more, rather than less, likely to get pregnant. Similar programs are used in … Read More

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