10 Stories to Start Your Day


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Accessed on 21 February 2020, 1745 UTC.


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People prefer monthly payments in multiples of $100, even when it may cost them more

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:48 AM PST

The trouble with round numbers Do you have a monthly car payment, or a similar loan? Is each payment a nice round number, like $300? If so, you are hardly alone. But the appeal of that easy-to-remember payment figure may be costing you money. That’s one implication of a new study co-authored by an MIT […]
Coding for uncertainty increases security

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:45 AM PST

Researchers develop algorithm to protect against poaching and other “green” security challenges Right now, drones are flying over wildlife parks in South Africa, equipped with thermal infrared cameras and smart automatic detection systems that can identify potential poachers.  If a poacher is spotted, the drone can alert nearby rangers and flash its lights to send […]
It’s a crime, but for meth cooks it’s also a job

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:44 AM PST

The motivation to start cooking meth is often driven by addiction, but a new study takes a closer look at the reasons cooks engage in this criminal behavior and come to see it as a job. Iowa State University researchers say the work offers insight into the world of meth production and an understanding of […]
Drug cocktail holds promise for spinal injuries

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:42 AM PST

Scientists have discovered a combination of two commonly available drugs that could help the body heal spinal fractures. The early-stage research in rats, by a group of scientists led by Imperial College London, revealed two existing medications can boost the body’s own repair machinery, by triggering the release of stem cells from the bone marrow. Our […]
Antidepressant harms baby neurons in lab-grown ‘mini-brains’

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:41 AM PST

Researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have demonstrated the use of stem-cell-derived “mini-brains” to detect harmful side effects of a common drug on the developing brain. Mini-brains are miniature human brain models, developed with human cells and barely visible to the human eye, whose cellular mechanisms mimic those of the developing human […]
Newly found bacteria fights climate change, soil pollutants

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:39 AM PST

Cornell researchers have found a new species of soil bacteria – which they named in memory of the Cornell professor who first discovered it – that is particularly adept at breaking down organic matter, including the cancer-causing chemicals that are released when coal, gas, oil and refuse are burned. “Microbes have been here since life […]
Wearable brain stimulation could safely improve motor function after stroke

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:38 AM PST

A non-invasive, wearable, magnetic brain stimulation device could improve motor function in stroke patients, according to preliminary late breaking science presented today at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference 2020. The conference, Feb. 19-21 in Los Angeles, is a world premier meeting for researchers and clinicians dedicated to the science of stroke and brain […]
10,000 times faster calculations of many-body quantum dynamics possible

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:33 AM PST

How an electron behaves in an atom, or how it moves in a solid, can be predicted precisely with the equations of quantum mechanics. These theoretical calculations agree fully with the results obtained from experiments. But complex quantum systems, which contain many electrons or elementary particles – such as molecules, solids or atomic nuclei – […]
Psychologists discover secret to achieving goals

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:31 AM PST

Research led by scientists at Queen Mary University of London has provided new insights into why people often make unrealistic plans that are doomed to fail. The study, published in the journal Behavioural Brain Research, analyzed the complex relationship between reward and effort in achieving goals, and identified two critical stages in the decision-making process. The […]
Huge stores of Arctic sea ice likely contributed to past climate cooling

Posted: 21 Feb 2020 04:29 AM PST

In a new paper, climate scientists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution propose that massive amounts of melting sea ice in the Arctic drained into the North Atlantic and disrupted climate-steering currents, thus playing an important role in causing past abrupt climate change after the last Ice Age, from about […]

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Until next time,

Russ Roberts (the daily update). (breaking science and technology news).

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