How the Big Rip could end the world

980x’A cosmological model predicts that the expanding Universe could rip itself apart. Too much dark energy could overwhelm the forces holding matter together. The disaster could happen in about 22 billion years.…’

Via Big Think

Are Big Questions a Good Idea?

Unknown’Philosophers are supposed to ask Big Questions. The Big Questions is the title of a popular introduction to philosophy and of a long-running BBC programme in which people discuss their ethical and religious perspectives. But since we philosophers, following in the footsteps of Socrates, claim to practice critical thinking, it behooves us to ask whether Big Questions are a good idea.

It’s not easy to say precisely what makes a question big; but we can at least give a few examples form the history of philosophy so that we have some idea what we’re talking about:…’

Via 3 Quarks Daily

A Complete Guide to All 17 (Known) Trump and Russia Investigations

TrumpRussia 872734326’After three weeks of back-to-back-to-back-to-back bombshells by federal prosecutors and special counsel Robert Mueller, it’s increasingly clear that, as 2018 winds down, Donald Trump faces a legal assault unlike anything previously seen by any president—at least 17 distinct court cases stemming from at least seven different sets of prosecutors and investigators. (That total does not count any congressional inquiries, nor does it include any other inquiries into other administration officials unrelated to Russia.)…

Here’s a complete rundown of the various known investigations targeting Trump’s world from local, state, and federal prosecutors:..’


How Zoos Respond When Natural Disasters Strike

Science Zoo Wildfires 1059590024 wDisaster-Prepping for the Animals:

’As climate change escalates the intensity and frequency of natural disasters like wildfires and hurricanes, zoos are having to find new ways to keep their animals safe. This means stocking up on emergency provisions for a hundred or more species, each with their own special medical, dietary, and habitat needs. It also means knowing, at a moment’s notice, which species need to move if keeping them outdoors becomes unsafe. Collecting such information requires years of planning. But zoos only began doing the work fairly recently.…’


Q: What’s worse than drug addiction?

A: drug addiction treatment.

Images’Many drug treatment centers are run as for-profit institutions. Making a buck off of treating people’s addictions often runs counter to actually helping addicts. Some Chinese drug centers are experimenting with removing an addict’s nucleus accumbens, which saps them of their ability to feel pleasure.…’

Via Big Think

Alzheimer’s Protein Accidentally Transmitted to Patients Via Discontinued Medical Treatments

’Researchers report human growth hormone, prepared from human tissue prior to 1985, may have been contaminated with seeds of the amyloid beta protein. In a new study, researchers injected mice with the original c-hGH batches containing amyloid beta which seeded amyloid pathology, even decades after storage. Findings support the hypothesis that the Alzheimer’s causing proteins can be transmitted to from contaminated materials.…’

Via Neuroscience News