Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Search for Extraterrestrial Visitation and world’s first time machine

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Abodes - Climate researchers have expanded a prevalent theory regarding the development of ice ages. In the current issue of the journal Nature three physicists from AWI's working group "Dynamics of the Palaeoclimate" present new calculations on the connection between natural insulation and long-term changes in global climate activity. Up to now the presumption was that temperature fluctuations in Antarctica, which have been reconstructed for the last million years on the basis of ice cores, were triggered by the global effect of climate changes in the northern hemisphere. See article.
g Life - The properties of optical stimuli need to be conveyed from the eye to the brain. To do this efficiently, the relevant information is extracted by pre-processing in the eye. For example, some of the so-called retinal ganglion cells, which transmit visual information to the brain via the optic nerve, only react to light stimuli moving in a particular direction. This direction selectivity is generated by inhibitory interneurons that influence the activity of the ganglion cells through their synapses. See article.
g Intelligence - Cheer up. Stop worrying. Don’t work so hard. Good advice for a long life? As it turns out, no. In a groundbreaking study of personality as a predictor of longevity, researchers found just the opposite. See article.
g Message - The search for extraterrestrial visitation is motivated not only by the writings of other authors on the subject of interstellar probes, but also by the awareness of the progression of our own probe technology. Included in this awareness are Earth's advancements in communication technology, growing understanding of exobiology and ongoing research of new possibilities to enable travel across vast distances. See article.
g Cosmicus - If the latest theory of Tom Weiler and Chui Man Ho is right, the Large Hadron Collider - the world's largest atom smasher that started regular operation last year - could be the first machine capable of causing matter to travel backwards in time. See article.

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