Science News for the Week of 6.14.10

The largest dino graveyard, the oldest leather shoe, and the latest victims of the oil spill

Science News for the Week of 6.14.10
An illustration of two battling Centrosaurus, an herbivorous dinosaur. Scientists in Alberta, Canada, recently discovered an enormous graveyard of Centrosaurus bones. [Credit: Wikimedia; LadyofHats]
By | Posted June 20, 2010
Posted in: Scienceline Staff Picks

In Alberta, Canada, scientists have uncovered the largest dinosaur graveyard yet, containing thousands of bones from a herd of herbivorous Centrosaurus apertus, which somewhat resembled the more famous Triceratops.

What do you get when you combine a cat and a patio? A ‘catio,’ of course. Some cat owners are getting a little creative when it comes to making the outdoors safe for their pets. A New York Times story.

British artist Luke Jerram’s glass sculptures of killer viruses have infected the Heller Gallery in New York City. Scienceline Editor Alyson Kenward blogged about the sculptures last fall.

A supercomputer that can answer tricky “Jeopardy!” questions faster than human competitors. What is I.B.M.’s Watson? The New York Times reports.

Could the switch from white rice to brown rice lower the risk for diabetes? CNN reports.

Your brain sees your hands as short and fat, explains Ed Yong of Not Exactly Rocket Science on the Discover blog network. Ed Yong also explains how sperm whale poo offsets carbon by fertilizing the oceans with iron and how menopausal aphids martyr themselves in sticky sacrifice to save their colonies.

A team of archaeologists have discovered the world’s oldest leather shoe in a sheep dung–lined cave in Armenia. Let’s try not to think about the stench. Scientific American reports.

The decomposing carcass of a juvenile sperm whale has been found floating 77 miles from the Gulf Oil Spill. Is it a victim? Also in trouble: the oddly adorable pancake batfish and sea cucumbers.

National Geographic explains how brain cells in a dish can be trained to keep time like an hourglass.

Carl Zimmer’s new column for Discover is about epigenetics and the brain switches that can turn mental illness on and off.

For a while now, Microsoft has been working on a completely controller-free gaming experience called Project Natal. It’s now called Kinect and it’s just about ready for gamers. Wired has the story.

The New York Times (once again with a great science story) reports on new research surrounding the connection between cruelty to animals and other criminal behavior.

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