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The future lies in uncertainty

 

Statisticians have celebrated a lot recently. 2013 marked the 300th anniversary of Jacob Bernoulli's Ars Conjectandi, which used probability theory to explore the properties of statistics as more observations were taken. It was also the 250th anniversary of Thomas Bayes' essay on how humans can sequentially learn from experience, steadily updating their beliefs as more data become available (1). And it was the International Year of Statistics (2). Now that the bunting has been taken down, it is a good time to take stock of recent developments in statistical science and examine its role in the age of Big Data.
Much enthusiasm for statistics hangs on the ever-increasing availability of large data sets, particularly when something has to be ranked or classified. These situations arise, for example, when deciding which book to recommend, working out where your arm is when practicing golf swings in front of a games console, or (if you're a security agency) deciding whose private e-mail to read first. Purely data-based approaches, under the title of machine-learning, have been highly successful in speech recognition, real-time interpretation of moving images, and online translation.

 

The future lies in uncertainty
. D. J. Spiegelhalter

Science 18 July 2014:
Vol. 345 no. 6194 pp. 264-265
http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1251122


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Complexity Digest's curator insight, July 18, 2014 6:25 PM

“Predicting the past is very easy. Predicting the future is not so easy” -Ignacio Méndez

Tom Cockburn's curator insight, July 31, 2014 3:20 AM

 ay seem banal comment but uncertainty,ambiguity and surprise are increasingly core features in the world today in the second machine age and the internet of things has arrived

Claude Emond's curator insight, August 3, 2014 8:01 PM

Not much to say here about that! You cannot predict the future. You can influence it though ! :)

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Lectures Aren't Just Boring, They're Ineffective, Too, Study Finds

Lectures Aren't Just Boring, They're Ineffective, Too, Study Finds | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Are your lectures droning on? Change it up every 10 minutes with more active teaching techniques and more students will succeed, researchers say. A new study finds that undergraduate students in classes with traditional stand-and-deliver lectures are 1.5 times more likely to fail than students in classes that use more stimulating, so-called active learning methods.


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Tony Parkin's curator insight, May 16, 2014 3:13 AM

It would be interesting to know if this has changed over time?

Monica Mirza's curator insight, May 16, 2014 12:04 PM

Quite logical...

 

Lisa Carey's curator insight, May 30, 2014 9:50 AM

Who has the most "air-time" in a classroom?  The teacher or the students?  We learn by doing. 

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Salmonella enterica induces and subverts the plant immune system

Salmonella enterica induces and subverts the plant immune system | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Scooped from: Frontiers in Microbiology, 2014

Authors: Ana V. García and Heribert Hirt

 

Summary:

Infections with Salmonella enterica belong to the most prominent causes of food poisoning and infected fruits and vegetables represent important vectors for salmonellosis. Whereas it was shown that plants raise defense responses against Salmonella, these bacteria persist and proliferate in various plant tissues. Recent reports shed light into the molecular interaction between plants and Salmonella, highlighting the defense pathways induced and the means used by the bacteria to escape the plant immune system and accomplish colonization. It was recently shown that plants detect Salmonella pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs), such as the flagellin peptide flg22, and activate hallmarks of the defense program known as PAMP-triggered immunity (PTI). Interestingly, certain Salmonella strains carry mutations in the flg22 domain triggering PTI, suggesting that a strategy of Salmonella is to escape plant detection by mutating PAMP motifs. Another strategy may rely on the type III secretion system (T3SS) as T3SS mutants were found to induce stronger plant defense responses than wild type bacteria. Although Salmonella effector delivery into plant cells has not been shown, expression of Salmonella effectors in plant tissues shows that these bacteria also possess powerful means to manipulate the plant immune system. Altogether, the data gathered suggest that Salmonella triggers PTI in plants and evolved strategies to avoid or subvert plant immunity.


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Cool PowerPoint Tricks: Write on Your Slides During your Presentation

Cool PowerPoint Tricks: Write on Your Slides During your Presentation | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
Sometimes you want to capture the audience’s responses in writing for all to see, but using flipchart just isn’t practical. Like in a room of 200 people. Or on a webinar. Or when you're presenting ...

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Elizabeth Lewis's curator insight, May 3, 2014 10:49 AM

Student responses

Character Minutes's curator insight, May 3, 2014 8:28 PM

Great way to make a  PowerPoint interactive

Mrs T Grade 3's curator insight, May 4, 2014 12:42 PM

Must try this today!

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Can We Trust Scientists? - YouTube

A look at the disconnect between science and public opinion. ---Links--- NASA climate change consensus resource: http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus...

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Mary Williams's curator insight, March 27, 2014 9:02 AM

This is very good!

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Control What Students Can Do with iPad Using Guided Access Functionality ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

Control What Students Can Do with iPad Using Guided Access Functionality ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

"If not properly used, iPad can also be a source of a major distraction for students. In fact, one of the common thing that happens in classrooms using iPad is that some students take the opportunity when  iPad is on to wander off topic and get lost in iPad meanderings. So next time you want to use iPad with students make sure you activate the Guided Access functionality which will limit what students will be able to do on iPad."


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Shark, Human Proteins are Surprisingly Similar - Scientific Computing

Shark, Human Proteins are Surprisingly Similar - Scientific Computing | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
Scientific Computing Shark, Human Proteins are Surprisingly Similar Scientific Computing Researchers have discovered that many of the endangered great white shark's proteins involved in an array of different functions — including metabolism — match...

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Universe may not be expanding after all but may be gaining mass instead -- initial singularity no longer needed

Universe may not be expanding after all but may be gaining mass instead -- initial singularity no longer needed | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
Particles' changing masses could explain why distant galaxies appear to be rushing away.

 

The Universe started in a big bang and has been expanding ever since. For nearly a century, this has been the standard view of the Universe. Now one cosmologist is proposing a radically different interpretation of events — in which the Universe is not expanding at all.

 

In a paper posted on the arXiv preprint server, Christof Wetterich, a theoretical physicist at the University of Heidelberg in Germany, has devised a different cosmology scenario in which the Universe is not expanding but the mass of everything has been increasing. Such an interpretation could help physicists to understand problematic issues such as the so-called singularity present at the Big Bang, he says.

 

Astronomers measure whether objects are moving away from or towards Earth by analysing the light that their atoms emit or absorb, which comes in characteristic colours, or frequencies. When matter is moving away from us, these frequencies appear shifted towards the red, or lower-frequency, part of the spectrum, in the same way that we hear the pitch of an ambulance siren drop as it speeds past. In the 1920s, astronomers including Georges Lemaître and Edwin Hubble found that most galaxies exhibit such a redshift — and that the redshift was greater for more distant galaxies. From these observations, they deduced that the Universe must be expanding.

 

But, as Wetterich points out, the characteristic light emitted by atoms is also governed by the masses of the atoms' elementary particles, and in particular of their electrons. If an atom were to grow in mass, the photons it emits would become more energetic. Because higher energies correspond to higher frequencies, the emission and absorption frequencies would move towards the blue part of the spectrum. Conversely, if the particles were to become lighter, the frequencies would become redshifted.

 

Because the speed of light is finite, when we look at distant galaxies we are looking backwards in time — seeing them as they would have been when they emitted the light that we observe. If all masses were once lower, and had been constantly increasing, the colours of old galaxies would look redshifted in comparison to current frequencies, and the amount of redshift would be proportionate to their distances from Earth. Thus, the redshift would make galaxies seem to be receding even if they were not.

 

Work through the maths in this alternative interpretation of redshift, and all of cosmology looks very different. The Universe still expands rapidly during a short-lived period known as inflation. But prior to inflation, according to Wetterich, the Big Bang no longer contains a 'singularity' where the density of the Universe would be infinite. Instead, the Big Bang stretches out in the past over an essentially infinite period of time. And the current cosmos could be static, or even beginning to contract.

 

The idea may be plausible, but it comes with a big problem: it can't be tested. Mass is what’s known as a dimensional quantity, and can be measured only relative to something else. For instance, every mass on Earth is ultimately determined relative to a kilogram standard that sits in a vault on the outskirts of Paris, at the International Bureau of Weights and Measures. If the mass of everything — including the official kilogramme — has been growing proportionally over time, there could be no way to find out.

 

For Wetterich, the lack of an experimental test misses the point. He says that his interpretation could be useful for thinking about different cosmological models, in the same way that physicists use different interpretations of quantum mechanics that are all mathematically consistent. In particular, Wetterich says, the lack of a Big Bang singularity is a major advantage.

 

He will have a hard time winning everyone over to his interpretation. “I remain to be convinced about the advantage, or novelty, of this picture,” says Niayesh Afshordi, an astrophysicist at the Perimeter Institute in Waterloo, Canada. According to Afshordi, cosmologists envisage the Universe as expanding only because it is the most convenient interpretation of galaxies' redshift.

 

Others say that Wetterich’s interpretation could help to keep cosmologists from becoming entrenched in one way of thinking. “The field of cosmology these days is converging on a standard model, centred around inflation and the Big Bang,” says physicist Arjun Berera at the University of Edinburgh, UK. “This is why it’s as important as ever, before we get too comfortable, to see if there are alternative explanations consistent with all known observation.”

 


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Peter Phillips's curator insight, July 25, 2013 3:06 PM

Wetterich points out, the characteristic light emitted by atoms is also governed by the masses of the atoms' elementary particles, and in particular of their electrons. If an atom were to grow in mass, the photons it emits would become more energetic. Because higher energies correspond to higher frequencies, the emission and absorption frequencies would move towards the blue part of the spectrum. Conversely, if the particles were to become lighter, the frequencies would become redshifted.

 

Because the speed of light is finite, when we look at distant galaxies we are looking backwards in time — seeing them as they would have been when they emitted the light that we observe. If all masses were once lower, and had been constantly increasing, the colours of old galaxies would look redshifted in comparison to current frequencies, and the amount of redshift would be proportionate to their distances from Earth. Thus, the redshift would make galaxies seem to be receding even if they were not.

Marie Rippen's curator insight, July 26, 2013 4:53 PM

Thought-provoking stuff, but the last point is my favorite--the idea that this theory is important mostly because it upends current assumptions. So much of what we think we know about the world is based upon unproven theories that we must keep an open mind even when our cherished dogma is threatened.

Science is so much more about what we don't know than what we do.

 
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3D visual forensic facial reconstruction of a Neanderthal face in front of your eyes

One of the coolest visualization techniques to come along in recent years is the careful forensic reconstruction of likely facial features of deceased people from their bony remains, based on subtleties in bone structure and the knowledge of what each variation means, on average. Originally developed so police could put a face to unknown human remains (an application where it has been quite successful), the technique has spilled over into anthropology.


Recreating a face from the underlying bone involves painstaking work with myriad precision measurements so the muscle and skin will have the correct thickness and placement. It also involves having access to a database of enough samples so that the assigned features have a statistical likelihood of being correct. These are not wild guesses or dreamy-eyed artists impressions, but a reasonable recreation of a face that actually existed.

 

Done with: Timelapse 3D scanning of skull; Python Photogrammetry Tools; 3D Sculpting; Blender Screen capture; FFMPG Video edigint; Kdenlive.

 


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Lake Vostok mysteries: Biologists find over 3,500 life forms in isolated Antarctic basin

Lake Vostok mysteries: Biologists find over 3,500 life forms in isolated Antarctic basin | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
Scientists have discovered more than 3,500 unique gene sequences in Lake Vostok – the underground Antarctic water reservoir isolated from the outside world for 15 million years – revealing a complex ecosystem far beyond anything they could have...

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Marian Locksley's curator insight, July 8, 2013 3:09 AM

"The bounds on what is habitable and what is not are changing," said Scott Rogers, Bowling Green State University professor of biological sciences, who led a genetic study of the contents of half a liter of water brought back from the lake after it was drilled by Russian scientists last year. 

"We found much more complexity than anyone thought," Rogers said. "It really shows the tenacity of life, and how organisms can survive in places where a couple dozen years ago we thought nothing could survive." 

 

There are few places on Earth more hostile to life forms than Lake Vostok, the largest subglacial lake in the Antarctic, and initially Rogers believed that the water from it may have been completely sterile. 

 

Water is located 4,000 meters below the ice, which completely blocks sunlight, and creates huge pressure on the liquid. It is also literally located in the coldest place on Earth: the world’s lowest temperature of -89.2C was recorded at Vostok Station above the reservoir.

 

8.7.13 ~  

Antarctic Lake Vostok 'might have fish':  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23230864

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Infographic: The Socratic questioning process ...

Infographic: The Socratic questioning process ... | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

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Overarcher's curator insight, July 10, 2013 2:55 AM

socratic questioning in pictures, love it!

Maria Persson's comment, July 11, 2013 6:15 PM
My daily life at work and play so often involves Socratic questioning - I never get bored and constantly on a learning curve! Thanks for sharing this great resource!
Margarita Parra's comment, July 22, 2013 10:01 PM
There is an approach to solving a problem, by Guy Brousseau. It looks much like this process.And it works!
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Evolution of human generosity

Evolution of human generosity | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
Imagine you're dining at a restaurant in a city you're visiting for the first -- and, most likely the last -- time.

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Evolution of human generosity

Evolution of human generosity | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
Imagine you're dining at a restaurant in a city you're visiting for the first -- and, most likely the last -- time.

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Mycorrhizae on the History Channel


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Agriculture Nouvelle's curator insight, May 19, 2014 9:00 AM

vidéo de 19 minutes en anglais

Darin Hoagland's curator insight, May 23, 2014 12:17 PM

Nice explainer video about the importance of Mycorrhizae and plant health.  Increasing agricultural food supply means maintaining good soil health and mycorrhizae are a big part of making soil nutrients to available plants.  Replenishing depleted soil especially after anti-fungal applications and reducing the myorrhizae application cost to farmers are key.  

Didier Vazel's curator insight, May 24, 2014 3:03 AM

Un début d'explication de leur fonctionnement.

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The plant microbiome and its importance for plant and human health - Frontiers in Microbiology

The plant microbiome and its importance for plant and human health - Frontiers in Microbiology | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Scooped from: Frontiers in Microbiology, 2014

Topic Editors:
Martin Grube, Michael Schloter, Kornelia Smalla and Gabriele Berg.

 

About: 

The study of plant-microbe associations by new techniques has significantly improved our understanding of the structure and specificity of the plant microbiome. Yet, microbiome function and the importance of the plant’s microbiome in the context of human and plant health are largely unexplored. Comparable with our human microbiome, millions of microbes inhabit plants, forming complex ecological communities that influence plant growth and health through its collective metabolic activities and host interactions. Viewing the microbiota from an ecological perspective can provide insight into how to promote plant health and stress tolerance of their hosts or how to adapt to a changing climate by targeting this microbial community. Moreover, the plant microbiome has a substantial impact on human health by influencing our gut microbiome by eating raw plants such as lettuce and herbs and but also by influencing the microbiome of our environment through airflow. This research topic will highlight the current knowledge regarding plant microbiomes, their specificity, diversity and function. Especially welcome are articles focused on the microbiomes of fresh edible plants and their impact on human health. Furthermore all applied aspects studying the management of plant microbiomes to enhance plant growth, health quality and stress tolerance are encouraged.


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Jean-Michel Ané's curator insight, May 4, 2014 11:28 AM

Interesting topic. 

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Scientists Learn How to Put an Octopus to Sleep | Octopus Chronicles, Scientific American Blog Network

Scientists Learn How to Put an Octopus to Sleep | Octopus Chronicles, Scientific American Blog Network | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
We can't really ask an octopus to count backward from 10. Which is just one of the tricky things about putting an octopus under.

If knocking an ...

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Feeding 9 Billion

Feeding 9 Billion | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
When we think about threats to the environment, we tend to picture cars and smokestacks, not dinner. But the truth is, our need for food poses one of the biggest dangers to the planet.

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Sally Egan's curator insight, April 30, 2014 11:09 PM

Agricultural production is one of the ways in which people modify the environment more than any other.  Global population is expected to top out at around 9 billion around 2050, so will we be able to sustainably feed all of the entire human population?  This one question brings up many more spatial, environmental, political and social questions--this interactive feature nicely addresses many of the pertinent issues in a very accessible manner.   

 

This article relates well to the Population topic in Global Challenges and issues that arise from the present growth patterns.  

Sid McIntyre-DeLaMelena's curator insight, May 29, 2014 1:59 PM

As population continues to grow and agricultural lands dissappear, the issue of feeding the world is becoming a growing concern.

The environmental places of the world are becoming arid and the agrarian places are dwindling affecting the human/environment interaction by introducing agricultural issues.

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, March 16, 3:52 PM

Agricultural production is one of the ways in which people modify the environment more than any other.  Global population is expected to top out at around 9 billion around 2050, so will we be able to sustainably feed all of the entire human population?  This one question brings up many more spatial, environmental, political and social questions--this interactive feature nicely addresses many of the pertinent issues in a very accessible manner.    

 

Tags: sustainability, agriculture, food production, environment modify, unit 5 agriculture. 

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Central Cell–Derived Peptides Regulate Early Embryo Patterning in Flowering Plants

Central Cell–Derived Peptides Regulate Early Embryo Patterning in Flowering Plants | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Plant embryogenesis initiates with the establishment of an apical-basal axis; however, the molecular mechanisms accompanying this early event remain unclear. Here, we show that a small cysteine-rich peptide family is required for formation of the zygotic basal cell lineage and proembryo patterning in Arabidopsis. EMBRYO SURROUNDING FACTOR 1 (ESF1) peptides accumulate before fertilization in central cell gametes and thereafter in embryo-surrounding endosperm cells. Biochemical and structural analyses revealed cleavage of ESF1 propeptides to form biologically active mature peptides. Further, these peptides act in a non–cell-autonomous manner and synergistically with the receptor-like kinase SHORT SUSPENSOR to promote suspensor elongation through the YODA mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway. Our findings demonstrate that the second female gamete and its sexually derived endosperm regulate early embryonic patterning in flowering plants.


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11 Virtual Tools for the Math Classroom

11 Virtual Tools for the Math Classroom | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

"More and more classrooms are gaining access to technology that can be used with students. Whether you're modeling a lesson, creating stations or working in a one-to-one classroom, virtual tools can promote student engagement while increasing academic success."


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Pippa Davies @PippaDavies 's curator insight, February 25, 2014 12:45 PM

Some awesome math apps to help your students learn math skills at a young age. 

Yossi Elran's curator insight, February 26, 2014 3:07 AM

אפליקאציות אייפד במתמטיקה

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Current Opinion in Biotechnology: Metabolic potential of endophytic bacteria (2013)

Current Opinion in Biotechnology: Metabolic potential of endophytic bacteria (2013) | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

The bacterial endophytic microbiome promotes plant growth and health and beneficial effects are in many cases mediated and characterized by metabolic interactions. Recent advances have been made in regard to metabolite production by plant microsymbionts showing that they may produce a range of different types of metabolites. These substances play a role in defense and competition, but may also be needed for specific interaction and communication with the plant host. Furthermore, few examples of bilateral metabolite production are known and endophytes may modulate plant metabolite synthesis as well. We have just started to understand such metabolic interactions between plants and endophytes, however, further research is needed to more efficiently make use of beneficial plant-microbe interactions and to reduce pathogen infestation as well as to reveal novel bioactive substances of commercial interest.


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NOAA's new interactive map shows all the vegetation on planet Earth

NOAA's new interactive map shows all the vegetation on planet Earth | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Thanks to the NASA/NOAA Suomi NPP satellite, NOAA has put together an incredible interactive map of the world's greenery, we can now see to an amazing degree of detail which parts of the planet is covered in green and which are bare. The map is thanks to the ability of the satellite to collect 2 TB of data every week -- and that's only the portion of data collected for the vegetation index.


Via Lauren Moss, Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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alistairm 's curator insight, June 24, 2013 3:54 AM

I'm hoping we'll see seasonal changes too! Great potential for looking at conservation issues, biodiversity, urban encroachment etc

Steve Mattison's curator insight, July 19, 2013 9:36 AM

It is a lot greener than you would think considering all the slash and burn hype the media puts out.

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Earth is surrounded by a 'bubble' of live bacteria - at 33 000 feet

Earth is surrounded by a 'bubble' of live bacteria - at 33 000 feet | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Earth’s upper atmosphere—below freezing, nearly without oxygen, flooded by UV radiation—is no place to live. But last winter, scientists from the Georgia Institute of Technology discovered that billions of bacteria actually thrive up there. Expecting only a smattering of microorganisms, the researchers flew six miles above Earth’s surface in a NASA jet plane. There, they pumped outside air through a filter to collect particles. Back on the ground, they tallied the organisms, and the count was staggering: 20 percent of what they had assumed to be just dust or other particles was alive. Earth, it seems, is surrounded by a bubble of bacteria.

 

Scientists don’t yet know what the bacteria are doing up there, but they may be essential to how the atmosphere functions, says Kostas Konstantinidis, an environmental microbiologist on the Georgia Tech team. For example, they could be responsible for recycling nutrients in the atmosphere, like they do on Earth. And similar to other particles, they could influence weather patterns by helping clouds form. However, they also may be transmitting diseases from one side of the globe to the other. The researchers found E. coli in their samples (which they think hurricanes lifted from cities), and they plan to investigate whether plagues are raining down on us. If we can find out more about the role of bacteria in the atmosphere, says Ann Womack, a microbial ecologist at the University of Oregon, scientists could even fight climate change by engineering the bacteria to break down greenhouse gases into other, less harmful compounds.


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Ed Rybicki's comment, June 25, 2013 3:39 AM
Hey, it's a microbial world - literally! From way above our heads, to way below our feet.
Dmitry Alexeev's curator insight, June 27, 2013 1:21 AM

we are everywhere)

Dmitry Alexeev's curator insight, July 28, 2013 7:31 AM

we'll have that one in our book as well

 

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The ten best herbs and spices for strengthening your immune system - Underground Health

The ten best herbs and spices for strengthening your immune system - Underground Health | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it
To stay strong, the immune system heavily depends on the stomach for support. Malnourished individuals are more susceptible to disease as opposed to those who practice a nutritious diet.

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Alex Zmushka's curator insight, July 4, 2013 5:02 PM

Great list! I've just posted a short article about ginger on bubblews.com Will share in a bit..

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A great How-to Tutorial on Creating Student Portfolios on iPad Using Google Drive App ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

A great How-to Tutorial on Creating Student Portfolios on iPad Using Google Drive App ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

"This is a post several of you have been looking for, I know this from the emails I have been receiving from you. Now you have a great video tutorial on how to use Google Drive app to create documentation, spreadsheets, tutorials, and PDF annotation all from the palm of your hand using your own iPad."


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Ludmila Smirnova's curator insight, May 30, 2013 11:33 PM

Life stories with iPad and g-DRIVE

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Welcome to 'Geography Education'

Welcome to 'Geography Education' | Resistance to antibiotics | Scoop.it

Finding Materials: This site is designed for geography students and teachers to find interesting, current supplemental materials.  To search for place-specific posts, browse this interactive map.  To search for thematic posts, see http://geographyeducation.org/thematic/ (organized by the APHG curriculum).  Also you can search for a keyword by clicking on the filter tab above.

 

Staying Connected: You can receive post updates in the way that best fits how you use social media.

Update Notifications: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+.

              Email: Click 'follow' button at top right of this page.

Sites with Content: Wordpress, Scoop.it.


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SRINIVAS KASULLA's comment, August 31, 2013 2:19 PM
Awsome liked the map and would like to contribute ....thanks for such a nice article Peters Energy :)
SRINIVAS KASULLA's comment, August 31, 2013 2:19 PM
Awsome liked the map and would like to contribute ....thanks for such a nice article Peters Energy :)
Thomas C. Thompson's curator insight, August 31, 2013 7:51 PM

Love this Geography Education site! Set up two ways: regionally and thematically so you can find lesson ideas easily.