He was probably about 40 years old, 155 pounds, white, and wearing a suit. And he's the reason why women are shivering at their desks in air-conditioned buildings.
At some point in the 1930s, someone defined "metabolic equivalents" – how much energy a body requires while sitting, walking and running. Almost a century later, the back-of-the-envelope calculations are considered a standard for many things, including air conditioning.
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 11:57 am
In a first, the Food and Drug Administration has given approval to a drug that is produced on a 3-D printer. The pill, produced by Aprecia Pharmaceuticals, treats seizures. It's expected to hit the market in the first quarter of 2016.
NPR's Rob Stein reports for our Newscast unit:
"The drug is called Spritam and is designed to treat seizures in people suffering from epilepsy. It's a new version of a seizure medication that's been on the market for years.
Look at the liner notes to any record by The Go-Betweens, and every song is co-credited "R. Forster/G. McLennan." Perhaps it was out of mutual respect, perhaps it was out of creative solidarity, but as with "Lennon/McCartney," fans of the Australian rock band could always tell who wrote what song; Grant McLennan and Robert Forster's distinct songwriting, vocal and guitar personalities were always on full display.
Walk along one of the many streams and rivers in the West Nile region of Uganda, and you'll notice something funny. All along the riverbanks, you'll see small pieces of blue cloth, attached to wooden stakes in the ground. There's one every 50 yards or so.
No, this isn't some half-baked public art project. These dinky contraptions are actually flytraps, designed to lure and kill tsetse flies, whose bites transmit a parasitic disease called sleeping sickness, which, like rabies, drives victims mad before it kills them.
There are two ways to look at the kind of fantasy novels that come with big glossaries at the end. Negatively, they're self-indulgent exercises in building fictional worlds, with the author fixating on the sheer quantity of settings and characters to the exclusion of all else. Positively, fantasy-novel glossaries help the reader keep track of an intricate clockwork of imaginary peoples, places, and things — and that intricacy actually pays off.
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 9:56 am
Lou Barlow has always been a restless - often anxious - old soul. In three decades of making music, first with Dinosaur Jr., later with Sebadoh and Folk Implosion, the guitarist and songwriter has tried to make sense of his place in the world with a prolific run of spare, emotionally raw, and plain-spoken songs.
It's a fool's errand to shorthand the diverse well of techno and house energy at the heart of Tom Demac's "The Shuttle Awaits," the latest in a flurry of singles the North Wales-reared, Manchester-hardened Londoner's been dropping for Aus and Hypercolour the past few years. His music clicks multiple genre boxes without pandering to any of them: hard, and as potentially minimal, as a brick; funky in that druggy, delinquent, energizing way U.K.
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 11:03 am
A man and a girl were killed while watching a traveling circus show Monday evening, after a strong storm dislodged the circus tent's poles and caused a collapse. Officials are now working to find out more about what went wrong at the fairgrounds in Lancaster, N.H.
"We lost two lives — a father and a daughter — at an event that was supposed to be fun," Gov. Maggie Hassan told local TV station WMUR.
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 10:32 am
Braden Swenson wanders into a semi-rickety wooden shed on his search for gold, treasure and riches.
"Is there any treasure in here?" he asks in the endearing dialect of a 4-year-old. "I've been looking everywhere for them. I can't find any." The proto-pirate toddler conducts a quick search, then wanders away to continue his quest elsewhere.
Not far away, Ethan Lipsie, age 9, clutches a framing hammer and a nine-penny nail. He's ready to hang his freshly painted sign on a wooden "fort" he's been hammering away on. It says, "Ethan, Hudson and William were here."
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 11:07 am
You're probably at least a little bit racist and sexist and homophobic. Most of us are.
Before you get all indignant, try taking one of the popular implicit-association tests. Created by sociologists at Harvard, the University of Washington, and the University of Virginia, they measure people's unconscious prejudice by testing how easy — or difficult — it is for the test-takers to associate words like "good" and "bad" with images of black people versus white people, or "scientist" and "lab" with men versus women.
When Gustav Mahler said a symphony "must be like the world. It must embrace everything," I suppose he meant embracing accordions, too.
Gustav Mahler's sprawling Ninth Symphony is a 90-minute journey brimming with the joys of life, haunted by death and with a lot happening along the way. Accordionist William Schimmel has squeezed this immense musical canvas down to just 6 1/2 minutes. That takes some guts.
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 9:35 am
At least 46 deaths have been blamed on flooding and landslides in Myanmar, where monsoon rains have forced disaster declarations in four regions. More than 1 million acres of farmland have been flooded, the government says.
Myanmar, also known as Burma, is appealing for international aid to help it cope with the flooding. Officials also say that because water has blocked travel between some areas, they don't yet know the full extent of the crisis.
Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 8:20 am
Science does a lot of things for us. It creates astonishing technologies transforming our lives for the better. It reveals unseen dimensions of wonder from the grandeur of spinning galaxies to the marvels of microscopic cells.
But for all that wonder and all those game changing technologies, sometimes science just turns out to be the best way to call "BS."