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Wolfgang Alexander Moens
12,821 followers -
Science!
Science!

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"Cassini may be gone, but these gorgeous Saturn photos are ours forever."

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Featured on Open Culture: Gustav Klimt’s Haunting Paintings Get Re-Created in Photographs, Featuring Live Models, Ornate Props & Real Gold

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Stephen Fry tells a punny story about a solar eclipse.

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"[This video] shows migration routes for about 150 species based on tracking data shared by over 11,000 researchers from around the world. The pink lines follow the movement of animals covering at least 310 miles in one direction for at least 45 days, combining about 8,000 tracks collected over a period of about 10 years. You can see lines extend from Africa to Turkey, all the way up to Europe, as well as from Canada to the United States, and vice versa. [...]"

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"The seven tactics unhealthy industries use to undermine public health policies ..."

This is an edited version of an article that appeared in a publication of the American Journal of Public Health.

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"In recent years, two new genetic technologies have started a scientific and medical revolution. One, relatively well known, is the ability to easily decode the information in our genes. The other, which is only dimly understood by the general public, is our newfound capacity to modify genes at will. These innovations give us the power to predict certain risks to our health, eliminate deadly diseases, and ultimately transform ourselves and the whole of nature. This development raises complex and urgent questions about the kind of society we want and who we really are. A brave new world is just around the corner, and we had better be ready for it or things could go horribly wrong. [...]"

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Which came first: flowers or dinosaurs?

Join hosts Hank Green, Kallie Moore, and Blake de Pastino as they take you on a journey through the history of life on Earth. From the dawn of life in the Archaean Eon through the Mesozoic Era — the so-called “Age of Dinosaurs” -- right up to the end of the most recent Ice Age.

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"[...] Yet what kind of reporting was going on regarding Syria just a few weeks before the April 4 gas attack? This was the Associated Press update on the Syria situation on March 5, in a general-interest story that ran in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Boston Globe, the Denver Post, PBS.com, NBC, ABC, and other popular outlets: “Five months of multi-sided clashes in Syria’s crowded northern battlefield have displaced some 66,000 people, a U.N. humanitarian agency said Sunday, a day after the U.S. bolstered Kurdish-led forces with a deployment of armored vehicles amid preparations for a push toward the Islamic State group’s de facto capital.” The subsequent paragraphs lacked even a few words of history and context to tell readers that nearly half a million people had died in a six-year war.

When newspapers use wire services, they’re using stories often written for an international audience that understands the backgrounds and can picture the geography around foreign conflicts— so individual editors should make the effort to clarify the issue for their readers. The lead paragraph of the Syria story, a whopping 48-word first sentence, at least could have been clarified by slicing the unnecessary words “crowded” and “some.” But here is a plain-language edit: “During the deadly six-year conflict in Syria, the most recent fighting has focused in Syria’s northern battlefield, where multiple groups have grappled for control. A United Nations agency announced on Sunday that in the last five months, 66,000 people have been displaced there—a statement issued the day after the U.S. gave armored vehicles to the Kurds for an impending push toward the Islamic State’s de facto capital.” Still too complex? How about: “In Syria’s northern battlefield, once controlled by the Islamic State, multiple groups have spent five months grappling for control. On Sunday, a U.N. humanitarian agency announced that as many as 66,000 residents have been displaced in that time. The statement came a day after Kurdish-led forces, with the help of armored vehicles provided by the US, prepared to push toward a makeshift capital still controlled by IS.”

To be fair, the Syrian crisis is a conflict that, unlike some, fails to fall neatly along national, racial, or ethnic lines, so it’s difficult to summarize—but therein lies the challenge for a writer and editor. [...]"
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