Author Archives: Christopher Intagliata

Primate Conflicts Play Out in the Operating Room

By analyzing 200 surgeries, anthropologists found mixed-gender operating room teams exhibited the highest levels of cooperation. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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People Ration Where They Roam

An analysis of the movement of some 40,000 people suggests most of us frequent only 25 places—and as we sub in new favorites, we drop old ones. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Humans Can Size One Another Up with a Roar

Listeners to a person letting loose with a roar can accurately estimate the size and formidability or the human noise maker. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Piano Lessons Tune Up Language Skills

Six months of piano lessons can heighten kindergartners’ brain responses to different pitches, and improve their ability to tell apart two similar-sounding words. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Bird’s Song Staying Power Implies Culture

Certain motifs in swamp sparrow songs can last hundreds, even thousands of years—evidence of a cultural tradition in the birds. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Alaskan Beluga Whales Ace Hearing Exam

Researchers tested the hearing of beluga whales in an Alaskan bay and found that they seem to have suffered little hearing loss due to ocean noise. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Jupiter Crackles with Polar Lightning

Juno spacecraft data suggest lightning on Jupiter is much more common than we thought—but it congregates near the poles, not the equator as on Earth. Christopher Intagliata reports. 

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Coral Reefs Keep Costly Waves at Bay

A new analysis found the flood protection benefits of coral reefs save the global economy $4 billion dollars a year. Christopher Intagliata reports. 

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Powder Pulls Drinking Water from Desert Air

A structure known as a metal organic framework traps water vapor by night, then releases it when heated the next day. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Ancient Clan War Explains Genetic Diversity Drop

Some 5,000 to 7,000 years ago, the diversity of Y chromosomes plummeted. A new analysis suggests clan warfare may have been the cause. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Mongooses Gift Grooming for Guard Duty

Humans and other primates often reciprocate good deeds. A new study suggests a nonprimate, the dwarf mongoose, does so, too, even after a delay. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Computers Go Head-to-Head with Humans on Face Recognition

The best facial-recognition algorithms are now as good as the best forensic examiners are. But the best results come by combining human and computer skills. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Computers Predict Pop Chart Success

An evolutionary analysis of pop tunes revealed that over the past 30 years songs have grown sadder—but the big hits buck that trend. Christopher Intagliata reports. 

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Computers Predict Pop Chart Success

An evolutionary analysis of pop tunes revealed that over the past 30 years songs have grown sadder—but the big hits buck that trend. Christopher Intagliata reports. 

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Stool-Pigeon Poop Reveals Bird-Racing Fouls

Racing pigeons is big business—and doping is common. Now scientists have devised a way to detect doping in the avian athletes. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Radar Scans Detail North Korean Nukes

Scientists have added radar info to seismic data, isotope measurements and optical imagery to study covert nuclear tests. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Jupiter and Venus Squeeze Earth’s Orbit

Sediment records have confirmed that Jupiter and Venus change Earth’s orbit from virtually circular to noticeably elliptical and back every 405,000 years. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Archaeologist Makes Case for Seafaring Neanderthals

Ancient tools on Mediterranean islands could predate the appearance of modern humans—suggesting Neanderthals took to the seas. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Bad Audio Can Hurt a Scientist’s Credibility

Listeners gave more credence to a scientist’s radio interview when the audio was good quality than they did to the same material when the audio was poor. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Drumming Beats Speech for Distant Communication

The Bora people in the northwestern Amazon use drums to send languagelike messages across long distances. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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If Singing’s Tough, Try Whistling

A new study claims it’s easier to accurately whistle a melody than to sing it. Christopher Intagliata reports. 

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NYC Mice Are Packed with Pathogens

Mice trapped in New York City apartment buildings harbored disease-causing bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Some Habitable Zone Exoplanets May Get X-Rayed Out

Red dwarfs are a popular place to hunt for small exoplanets in the habitable zone—but the stars’ radiation bursts might fry chances for life as we know it. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Brain Scan Might Reveal Appetite for Risk

Volunteers willing to place riskier bets tended to sport larger amygdalas—a region associated with processing fear. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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13,000-Year-Old Footprints under West Coast Beach

Several feet below a beach in British Columbia, archaeologists discovered soil trampled by human feet—the oldest footprints found so far in North America. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Math Cracks a Knuckle-Cracking Mystery

The source of knuckle cracking sounds is much debated—but new mathematical models may reconcile two opposing views. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Rotting Flesh Offers Insight on Fossilization

To learn more about decay and fossilization, researchers conduct unorthodox experiments—like dissecting decomposing animals in the lab. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Arctic Heat Waves Linked to Snowpocalypse-Like Storms

An analysis of more than six decades of daily temperature and snowfall data linked warmer arctic temperatures to cold snaps at lower latitudes. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Gut Parasites Have Their Own Gut Microbiomes

The whipworm lives in the human gut, mooching microbes from its host to build its own microbiome. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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Saliva Protein Might Inhibit Intestinal Anarchy

A protein found in spit prevents bad bugs from binding to intestinal cells in the lab, pointing to a possible way to lower the chances of dysentery. Christopher Intagliata reports.

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