Geoscience Research Institute

News Archives – July-Dec 2011

DISCLAIMER:  The following links do not necessarily represent endorsement by the Geoscience Research Institute, but are meant to provide information from a wide range of viewpoints and expertise on scientific issues, religious issues, and the interface between the two, particularly in the area of creation and evolution.


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  • RUSSIAN TRANSLATION: The Yellowstone Petrified “Forests” / 1997 / Harold G. Coffin / Origins, v.24, p.2-44

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  • Beyond space-time: Welcome to phase space / 8 August 2011 / Amanda Gefter / New Scientist, n.2824, p.34-37 — a theory of reality beyond Einstein’s universe is taking shape — and a mysterious cosmic signal could soon fill in the blanks
  • Picking flowers in dinosaur-aged mud / 5 August 2011 / Wendy Zukerman / New Scientist, n.2824, p.14 — see a ghostly, long-dead flower from the age of the dinosaurs, captured using X-rays
  • Don’t get smart: The curse of knowledge / 4 August 2011 / Richard Fisher / New Scientist, n.2823, p.39-41 — knowing less can make you a better teacher, a more perceptive student and a happier person overall … it could even make you richer
  • Evolution of Selfless Behavior / 3 August 2011 / David Sloan Wilson / New Scientist, n.2824
    • An idea rejected — Darwin proposed that altruism arose because it makes groups fitter, but group selection, as this idea is known, has a complicated history
    • An idea revived — the revival of group selection is a result of better models and experimental studies showing it is indeed possible
    • A new view of human origins — our ability to cooperate and to suppress cheats means that selection at the group level has been an exceptionally strong force during human evolution
    • A new consensus — we should be prepared to acknowledge the influence of a highly individualistic culture on theories put forward during the second half of the 20th century
  • Can design evolve the same way humans do? /3 August 2011 / Jonathon Keats / New Scientist, n.2824, p.48 — in On the Origin of Tepees, Jonnie Hughes argues that the design of everyday objects is a product of an evolutionary process
  • Industrial revolution sealed Neanderthals’ fate / 3 August 2011 / New Scientist, n.2824, p.18 — it may have been competition, not interbreeding, that helped modern humans replace Europe’s Neanderthals
  • Iron-rich dust fuelled 4 million years of ice ages / 3 August 2011 / Fred Pearce / New Scientist, n.2824, p.12 — the iron in dust fertilises plankton growth and triggers ice age conditions — suggesting that geoengineering projects could cool the climate
  • Welcome to the complicated human family / 2 August 2011 / New Scientist, n.2823, p.3 — decoding ancient hominin genomes may finally help us see human evolution for what it is — a dynamic process of constant interaction and change
  • Archaeopteryx knocked off its perch as first bird / 27 July 2011 / James O’Donoghue / New Scientist, n.2823, p.10 — a new feathered dinosaur from China is so similar to the iconic “earliest bird” that it has kicked Archaeopteryx out of the avian family tree
    • We shouldn’t mourn the demotion of Archaeopteryx / 27 July 2011 / New Scientist, n.2823, p.3 — the fossil’s reclassification from bird to dinosaur shows that science is still doing what it does best — revising cherished ideas in light of new evidence
  • ‘Predict your death’ longevity paper retracted / 27 July 2011 / New Scientist, n.2823, p.4 — a controversial Science paper that claimed to have found the key to predicting human longevity has been retracted by its authors
  • Earth’s time bombs may have killed the dinosaurs / 27 July 2011 / Colin Barras / New Scientist, n.2823, p.8 — the giant reptiles’ fate may have been sealed half a billion years before life even appeared, by two geological time bombs that still lurk near Earth’s core
  • The God Species: How the Planet Can Survive the Age of Humans / July 2011 / Mark Lynas / Fourth Estate — see also Amazon
    • Playing God with the planet / 27 July 2011 / Fred Pearce / New Scientist, n.2823, p.48 — British environment writer argues that we can use capitalist principles to counter environmental devastation
  • Egypt’s Ancient Fleet: Lost for Thousands of Years, Discovered in a Desolate Cave / June 2011 / Andrew Curry / Discover Magazine — an ancient harbor on the Red Sea proves ancient Egyptians mastered oceangoing technology and launched a series of ambitious expeditions to far-off lands
  • Homo Sapiens, Meet Your New Astounding Family / May 2011 / Jill Neimark / Discover Magazine — Once we shared the planet with other human species, competing with them and interbreeding with them. Today we stand alone, but our rivals’ genes live on inside us — even as their remarkable stories are only now coming to light.
  • NASA’s Inspiring, Enlightening, and Successful Search for New Earths / May 2011 / Tim Folger / Discover Magazine — The Kepler space telescope, NASA’s first mission dedicated to the search for planets beyond our solar system, has produced a gusher of strange new worlds. If astronomers are right, many of them will prove to be habitable.

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  • Evangelicals Question the Existence of Adam and Eve / August 9, 2011 / Barbara Bradley Hagerty / National Public Radio
  • Self-tidying molecules could have kick-started life / 22 July 2011 / Michael Marshall / New Scientist, n.2822, p.9 — close to a source of heat, fragments of DNA and RNA can be made to sort themselves according to their size
  • Existence special: Cosmic mysteries, human questions / 20 July 2011 / New Scientist, n.2822, p.27 — Why does the universe exist? For that matter, why do people? Can you even be sure that you do? New Scientist confronts the most cosmic of questions.
  • Quantum quirk makes carbon dating possible / 15 July 2011 / David Shiga / New Scientist, n.2821, p.11 — carbon-14 is used to decode objects’ ages, but the isotope has steadfastly refused to divulge the key to its own unusual longevity — until now
  • Human history recorded in a single genome / 13 July 2011 / Ferris Jabr / New Scientist, n.2821, p.12 — it seems every one of us carries in our genes a million-year record of past human population size
  • Simple minds: How animals think / 6 July 2011 / Emma Young / New Scientist, n.2819, p.40-43 — Can a fly think? How about a dolphin? The mental lives of animals are turning out to be surprisingly complex.
  • Magnificent / Andie’s Isle — Utilizing footage from the BBC Planet Earth Series, we take a look at the wonder and majesty of God’s creation. Set to the song, “Creation Calls” by Brian Doerksen, this stunning glimpse of God’s masterpiece is meant to glorify Him and draw the mind to new places of intimacy with Him.

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