In case you haven’t caught them yet, here’s a recap of this week’s most popular stories. Looking at the universe as a hologram; diesel fuel from carbon dioxide and water; first observations of a rare subatomic process; a big data history of music charts; secrets of colossal, invisible waves; perceptions of dress colors; and more are among the top hits.
What Colors are the Dress? Three Perspectives on Why the Image is seen Differently
When you look at this photograph, what colors are the dress? Some see blue and black stripes, others see white and gold stripes. This striking variation took the Internet by storm in February; now Current Biology is publishing three short papers on why the image is seen differently by different observers, and what this tells us about the complicated workings of color perception.
Researchers Unravel Secrets of Colossal, Invisible Waves in Earth’s Oceans
Detailed new field studies, laboratory experiments and simulations of the largest known “internal waves” in the Earth’s oceans — phenomena that play a key role in mixing ocean waters, greatly affecting ocean temperatures — provide a comprehensive new view of how these colossal, invisible waves are born, spread and die off. The paper is co-authored by 42 researchers from 25 institutions in five countries.
A Look Back 35 Years after Mount St. Helens’ Deadly Eruption
Thirty-five years ago, Mount St. Helens in southwest Washington State erupted, killing 57 people, blasting more than 1,300 feet off the top and raining volcanic ash for miles around. Today, the volcano has become a world-class outdoor laboratory for the study of volcanoes, ecosystems and forestry, and scientists are constantly recording activity in and around the mountain.
Big Data Analysis of Sounds Creates 50-year Evolutionary History of Music Charts
Evolutionary biologists and computer scientists have come together study the evolution of pop music. Their analysis of 17,000 songs from the US Billboard Hot 100 charts, 1960 to 2010, is the most substantial scientific study of the history of popular music to date. They studied trends in style, the diversity of the charts, and the timing of musical revolutions.
Two Large Hadron Collider Experiments First to Observe Rare Subatomic Process
Two experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland, have combined their results and observed a previously unseen subatomic process. A joint analysis by the CMS and LHCb collaborations has established a new and extremely rare decay of the Bs particle (a heavy composite particle consisting of a bottom antiquark and a strange quark) into two muons.
Audi Succeeds in Making Diesel Fuel from Carbon Dioxide and Water
Audi has taken another big step in the development of new, CO2 neutral fuels: A pilot plant in Dresden has started production of the synthetic fuel Audi e diesel. After a commissioning phase of just four months, the research facility in Dresden started producing its first batches of high‑quality diesel fuel this month. The only raw materials needed are water and carbon dioxide.
Is the Universe a Hologram? New Calculations Suggest Holographic Principle Holds in Flat Spacetime
At first glance, there is not the slightest doubt: to us, the universe looks three-dimensional. But one of the most fruitful theories of theoretical physics in the last two decades is challenging this assumption. The “holographic principle” asserts that a mathematical description of the universe actually requires one fewer dimension than it seems. What we perceive as 3-D may just be the image of 2-D processes on a huge cosmic horizon.
Cost of LIMS: True Pricing includes more than Purchase, Implementation and Annual Licensing
The real benefit of laboratory information management systems (LIMS) is difficult to calculate. Let’s take a look at some key considerations, starting with the question of whether to build the LIMS yourself or buy a commercial LIMS… Advocates for building a new LIMS themselves usually state that their lab is so unique, they cannot use a commercial LIMS. However, very few labs are truly unique …