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The word ‘nice’ has an unusual history in the English language. Originally a term for ‘foolish’, its meaning over the centuries has morphed from ‘wanton’ to ‘reserved’ to ‘fastidious’. These days, it has become a somewhat bland and opaque description of personality: “she’s really nice.” But its common usage hints at the characteristics that matter deeply to
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This article has been sponsored by Griffith University for their new Bachelor of Social Science – find out more here. Kevin Rudd described global warming as “the greatest moral challenge of our generation”, but this is too simple. It’s the greatest economic, political, social, cultural, environmental, and scientific challenge of our time.   A silver bullet won’t
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Weighing nearly 70 US tons (63 tonnes), heavier than 10 adult African elephants, this dinosaur was the largest animal to ever walk on Earth, according to some scientists. This plant-eating beast first made headlines in 2014, after a rancher from Patagonia in Argentina discovered a fossil bone. Last year, the American Museum of Natural History in New York
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Despite what you might’ve seen in 1950s monster movies, it’s difficult to raise mutant ants. For years biologists have altered the genetics of organisms as varied as mice and rice. Mutant fruit flies are a labouratory staple. But ants’ complex life cycle hampered efforts to grow genetically engineered ants – until now.   On Thursday, two independent research
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Scientists have developed a thin flexible battery suited to implantable devices that does away with dangerous chemicals and replaces them with biologically compatible liquids. The bendy batteries use sodium-based liquids – one a saline solution and another using cell cultures – and this innovation could change how we power wearable devices and even medical implants.
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A sleeping brain can form fresh memories, according to a team of neuroscientists. The researchers played complex sounds to people while they were sleeping, and afterward the sleepers could recognise those sounds when they were awake. The idea that humans can learn while asleep, a concept sometimes called hypnopaedia, has a long and odd history.