In the highly anticipated return of activity in the First Ever Cheesecake Playoffs, Pumpkin Cheesecake got squashed against #2 seed Adam’s Peanut Butter Cup Fudge Ripple, setting up a premier no-holds-barred peanut butter semifinal showdown. This past weekend, the Farris family renewed its effort … Continue reading →
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The 2009 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) report has been released. The report examines the science of 15 year olds from 57 countries in math, science and reading. The main focus of PISA 2009 was reading. the survey also updated performance assessments in mathematics and science. The emphasis is on mastering processes, understanding concepts and functioning in various contexts within each assessment area. the PISA 2012 survey will return to mathematics as the major assessment area, PISA 2015 will focus on science.
Results for the Science portion (rank – country – mean score)(I am not listing all countries):
Results for the math portion (rank – country – mean score)(I am not listing all countries):
Related: USA Teens 29th in Science – Best Research University Rankings (2008) – The Importance of Science Education – Country H-index Rank for Science Publications – posts on science education
We've all been sitting around wondering what big questions would ever completely stymie science — we've been just knocking 'em down right and left, and scientists have been completely baffled about what good question they could possibly ask next. We've all had serious concerns that maybe we were all done, and we'd have to go work for a living or something terrible like that.
But we've been saved by Oprah. She, or rather the scientifically deep team of scientific and philosophical experts on her staff, have come up with a challenging list of Humongous Questions that we'll have to address in our next grant proposals. Here they are, Six Questions Science Can't Answer.
Padre Pio's Stigmata! Old dead Italian priest would poke himself to make himself bleed every day, and people worshipped him like Jesus!
Hindu statues drink milk! When offered sips of milk, statues of Ganesha are claimed to have drunk it, and people believed it!
Mosque didn't fall down! Old mosque in city damaged by tsunami failed to collapse; populace dumbfounded and consternated!
Well golly gee. I am sorta puzzled…not by the questions, which are trivial and stupid, but by the fact that the authors, Jennifer Margulis and Meredith Bryan, managed to find gainful employment as writers and that CNN thought this crap was worth publishing. More Mysteries! That Science Can't Answer!
But wait! I'm sure at this point, Jennifer and Meredith — hang on, I need a cutesy name for this couple…Jennidith! — Jennidith looked at their list of big questions and pondered. They'd hit up a couple of the Big Religions, and they were probably thinking that they could have gone on in this vein for a while. After all, they haven't said anything about Judaism or Buddhism yet (maybe, "Why is a Catholic girl like Madonna suddenly so Jewish?" or "How will you explain what the Dalai Lama will be reincarnated as in his next life?"), but they were unsatisfied. These questions didn't sound very sciencey. They weren't even sciencish.
So they puzzled and they pondered and they contemplated, and they thought of some big science-like questions that had nothing at all to do with the first three questions, but kind of looked like questions a really smart person might ask, and since they didn't know the answers, they must be the big questions we should shoo the scientists off to find out.
How did the universe begin? Like, planetariums are really awesome. Especially during Laser Floyd.
Do aliens exist? We're not crazy to believe in space aliens, and we found a scientist who says there are other planets out there for them!
How many species live on earth? So many of those species are really, really small, so they must be hard to count!
I'd say more, but right now I'm just looking at Jennidith, shaking my head sadly, and wondering if maybe there isn't somewhere else I'd rather be. Somewhere else with beer, maybe. And maybe with grown-ups who can talk intelligently. Because Jennidith, poor Jennidith, is an airhead.
They shouldn't feel too bad, though. You can't even imagine what I think of Oprah!Read the comments on this post...
We commonly think of sleep as a healing process that melts away the stresses of the day, preparing us to deal with new challenges. Research has also shown that sleep plays a crucial role in the development of memories.
The role a key molecule plays in a plant's ability to remember winter, and therefore bloom in the spring, has been identified by University of Texas at Austin scientists.
There is a press briefing happening right now in Japan, and it's terrible news: Akatsuki failed to enter Venus orbit, nor will it be able to enter Venus orbit. Ever. It's a repeat of the sad fate of the Nozomi mission to Mars. What horrible luck. Twitter is very active with reporting on the press briefing right now. My plan is to wait until tomorrow morning, then see what has developed over my night. During the Japanese day, I hope, news ....
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The brain's visual neurons continually develop predictions of what they will perceive and then correct erroneous assumptions as they take in additional external information, according to new research done at Duke University.
A group of computer engineers at Vanderbilt University is convinced that the basic technology is now available to create robot assistants that can perform effectively in the often-chaotic environment of the emergency room.
Researchers have found compelling evidence for an extensive biological community living in porous rock deep beneath the seafloor. The microbes in this hidden world appear to be an important source of dissolved organic matter in deep ocean water, a finding that could dramatically change ideas about the ocean carbon cycle.
Scientists at Seattle Biomedical Research Institute (Seattle BioMed) and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine have reached a major milestone in the effort to wipe out some of the most lethal diseases on the planet.