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March 22 2014

Now it is more likely than ever: There must be particles out there smaller than Higgs particle


Nobody has seen them yet; particles that are smaller than the Higgs particle. However theories predict their existence, and now the most important of these theories have been critically tested. The result: The existence of the yet unseen particles is now more likely than ever.

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March 22 2014

What happens when the poles flip?


Have you heard the startling news that the Earth's poles might flip? Perhaps in the response to a close pass from the mysterious Planet X? Are you imagining the entire Earth actually flipping over on its side or rotating upside down, possibly while Yakkity Sax plays in the background? When will this happen? Can this happen?

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March 22 2014

Solar Power Array Could Orbit Earth


The U.S. Navy has a solar power plan that’s literally out of this world. The concept entails constructing an orbiting solar array in space that spans nine football fields.

U.S. Naval Research Laboratory spacecraft engineer Paul Jaffe is working on solar modules intended to be launched into space one at a time. Then robots would assemble them into an enormous array that converts solar energy into a radio frequency that gets beamed to receivers on Earth.

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March 22 2014

UV wristband helps you get vitamin D without sunburn


Now you can measure everything under the sun with the technology you carry. A wristband that monitors exposure to UV rays allows users to soak up the light needed to make vitamin D without getting burned, and without the need for sunscreen.

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March 22 2014

Scientists find mechanism to reset body clock


Researchers have discovered a new mechanism that governs how body clocks react to changes in the environment. The discovery could provide a solution for alleviating the detrimental effects of chronic shift work and jet-lag.

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March 22 2014

Lost sleep could cause 'permanent damage to brain cells' scientists warn


Sleepless nights could prove more damaging than previously thought, after the results of a new study suggested sleep deprivation can lead to a permanent loss of brain cells.

The “disturbing” research found mice experiencing chronic sleep loss saw 25 per cent of their brain cells die, according to research published yesterday in the Journal of Neuroscience.

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March 22 2014

New study shows we work harder when we are happy


Happiness makes people more productive at work, according to the latest research from the University of Warwick.

Economists carried out a number of experiments to test the idea that happy employees work harder. In the laboratory, they found happiness made people around 12% more productive.

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March 22 2014

The NSA Plans on Infecting Millions of Computers With Malware: Here’s How


Like sketchy porn sites, faux internet contests and websites offering to clean your PC for free, the NSA hopes to infect millions of computers with malware. Glenn Greenwald’s The Intercept has the story. If you’re interested in NSA coverage, I recommend it.

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March 22 2014

I-Ching: The ancient Chinese book of wisdom at the heart of every computer


Gottfried Wilhelm von Liebniz was a philosopher and mathematician in search of a model. In the late 1600s Leibniz decided there was a need for a new, purer arithmetic than our common decimal system. Leibniz discovered the model for this new arithmetic in the five-millennia-old book that is at the heart of Chinese philosophy: the I-Ching, or Book of Changes.

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March 22 2014

Humans drive evolution of conch size


The first humans to pluck a Caribbean fighting conch from the shallow lagoons of Panama's Bocas del Toro were in for a good meal. Smithsonian scientists found that 7,000 years ago, this common marine shellfish contained 66 percent more meat than its descendants do today.

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March 22 2014

New analyses verify the use of fire by Peking Man


Zhoukoudian Locality 1 in northern China has been widely known for the discovery of the Middle Pleistocene human ancestor Homo erectus pekinensis ( known as Peking Man ) since the 1920s. By 1931, the suggestion that the Zhoukoudian hominins could use and control fire had become widely accepted. However, some analyses have cast doubt on this assertion as siliceous aggregate (an insoluble phase of burned ash) was not present in ash remains recovered from the site.

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March 22 2014

The digital unwrapping of the Egyptian priest Neswaiu


In the 19th century and even later, there was no shortage of people eager to watch the unwrapping of an Egyptian mummy.

In 1908 in Manchester, some 500 people gathered in a lecture theatre to see prominent Egyptologist Margaret Murray supervise the unwrapping of a body from the Tomb of the Two Brothers from Manchester Museum's mummy collection.

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March 22 2014

American student decodes 1,800-year-old letter sent by Egyptian soldier to his family


A student has decoded a 1,800-year-old letter sent by an Egyptian soldier to his family which bears striking similarities to those serving on the front line today.

Graduate Grant Adamson, of Rice University in the United States, cracked the words on the document after being assigned the task in 2011 during a summer institute at Brigham Young University in Utah.

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March 22 2014

New book tells the story of a little-known volcano's global impact


The 200th anniversary of the largest volcanic eruption in recorded history will be marked by the publication of a new book by University of Illinois professor Gillen D'Arcy Wood. If you think the title character might be Vesuvius, or Krakatoa, or maybe Pinatubo, you're wrong. Wood's focus is Tambora – a mountain in the Indonesian archipelago that erupted so violently in April of 1815 that today, it is ranked as "super colossal" on the scientific Volcanic Explosivity Index. And the explosion was only the first dose of Tambora's destructive power.

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March 22 2014

The Gods of Olympus


With a few cosmetic adjustments, the ancient Greek gods could almost be mistaken for an archetypal family from a modern American television show. There's the strong but flawed patriarch (Zeus), the nagging wife (Hera), a mischievous, lovable child (Hermes), and two neatly contrasting pairs of older children.

Scratch the surface, however, and things become somewhat stranger.

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March 22 2014

Ancient Sheep Poop Reveals Desert Island's Secret Past


On the floor of a cave in a remote desert island in Mexico, scientists stumbled across a mat of urine-hardened poop, dating back to more than 1,500 years ago. The fossilized dung offers surprising evidence that bighorn sheep once lived on the uninhabited island, a new study claims.

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March 22 2014

Unique chromosomes preserved in Swedish fossil


Researchers have made a unique discovery in a well-preserved fern that lived 180 million years ago. Both undestroyed cell nuclei and individual chromosomes have been found in the plant fossil, thanks to its sudden burial in a volcanic eruption.

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March 21 2014

Airborne Iron May Have Helped Cause Past Ice Ages


It seems straightforward: Iron-rich dust floating on the wind falls into the sea, where it nourishes organisms that suck carbon dioxide from the air. Over time, so much of this greenhouse gas disappears from the atmosphere that the planet begins to cool. Scientists have proposed that such a process contributed to past ice ages, but they haven’t had strong evidence—until now.

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