It\’s been a great year for science books! Devoted sci-phile blogger George Aranda shares his top five science reads of 2013.
Too good to put down: There were many great science reads published in 2013 (iStockphoto: diego_cervo)
There were many great books published this year, so it was very hard to cut down the list to my top five.
A number of biographies about people in the history of science, both past and current hit our shelves such as Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age by W Bernard Carlson; and Robert Oppenheimer: A Life Inside the Center by Ray Monk.
Autobiographies included Stephen Hawking\’s Stephen Hawking: My Brief Life, Richard Dawkins\’ An Appetite for Wonder: The Making of a Scientist and Colonel Chris Hadfield\’s An Astronaut\’s Guide to Life on Earth.
via Top five science reads of 2013 › Opinion (ABC Science).
The meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is nearing its third anniversary and the disaster and radiation are still being felt around the globe, most recently in the North American west coast where the hit is being felt by Canadians, Mexicans and US citizens alike.
It is believed that an area of ocean as far as ten miles distant from the nuclear power plant was contaminated by the disaster in March of 2011. With ocean tides and sea life which is by no means confined to only miles within the ocean, that contamination was easily spread. It presents its most dangerous form in radioactive seafood and fish, which can be caught nearly anywhere and brought to the table in various countries. Surprisingly, seafood captured on the Pacific coast may be far more likely to contain radionuclides from the disaster than seafood from the Sea of Okhotsky, which is actually much closer to Japan. The world ocean currents are said to be responsible for this trend.
via Fukushima Radiation Hits US West Coast.
The world faces two potentially existential threats, according to the linguist and political philosopher Noam Chomsky.
“There are two major dark shadows that hover over everything, and they’re getting more and more serious,” Chomsky said. “The one is the continuing threat of nuclear war that has not ended. It’s very serious, and another is the crisis of ecological, environmental catastrophe, which is getting more and more serious.”
Chomsky appeared Friday on the last episode of NPR’s “Smiley and West” program to discuss his education, his views on current affairs and how he manages to spread his message without much help from the mainstream media.
via Noam Chomsky: We’re no longer a functioning democracy, we’re really a plutocracy | The Raw Story.
This colorized mosaic from NASA\’s Cassini mission shows the most complete view yet of Titan\’s northern land of lakes and seas. Saturn\’s moon Titan is the only world in our solar system other than Earth that has stable liquid on its surface. The liquid in Titan\’s lakes and seas is mostly methane and ethane.
The data were obtained by Cassini\’s radar instrument from 2004 to 2013. In this projection, the north pole is at the center. The view extends down to 50 degrees north latitude. In this color scheme, liquids appear blue and black depending on the way the radar bounced off the surface. Land areas appear yellow to white. A haze was added to simulate the Titan atmosphere.
via Space Images: Titan’s North – NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Australia has won the third Ashes Test at the WACA by 150 runs, reclaiming the famous urn for the first time since 2006/07.England showed resistance early on the fifth day led by rookie all-rounder Ben Stokes who scored Englands first ton of the series.
via The Ashes: Australia has reclaimed the Ashes after beating England by 150 runs at the WACA – ABC News Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
Just put this up for my own delight.
Another report has come out in support of Bus Rapid Transit BRT, an innovative way to provide public transit at a low cost with dedicated bus lanes, stops, and schedules.The study PDF, from pro-transit group Embarq, found that BRT drastically reduced commute times, improved air quality, and cut road fatalities in congested cities like Bogota, Istanbul, Johannesburg, and Mexico City. And we already know that BRT is one of the most cost-effective public transit investments a municipality can make.
via Public Transit Is Underfunded Because the Wealthy Dont Rely on It | Autopia | Wired.com.