Science

The Two-Way
8:46 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

'Completely Unique': Cave-Dwelling Female Insects Have Penises

Made for a tight grip: The female penis of an insect species newly discovered in Brazil has spines on it.
Courtesy of Current Biology, Yoshizawa et al.

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 12:51 am

Four new insect species found in Brazil have rather strange sex lives — to say the least. Their sex organs are reversed: Females have penises and males have vaginas, scientists reported Thursday in the journal Current Biology.

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The Two-Way
6:37 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Even Chimps Know That A Firm Bed Makes For Quality Sleep

A chimpanzee hangs from a tree trunk in Kibale National Park in Uganda. A new study indicates that chimps prefer a specific tree for sleeping.
James Akena Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 7:14 pm

In the wilds of Africa, chimpanzees consistently choose to make their sleeping nests in a particular tree that offers the "just right" kind of comfort that Goldilocks famously preferred.

That's according to a new study in the journal PLOS ONE that could also bolster a theory that solid shut-eye may have been a key to human evolution.

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Shots - Health News
3:46 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Got A Hobby? Might Be A Smart Professional Move

Physicist Albert Einstein found great joy in his hobby — playing the violin.
Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 9:31 am

Maybe you paint, keep a journal or knit. Or maybe you play bass in a punk rock band.

Whatever hobby you have, keep at it. A little study published this week suggests that having a creative outlet outside the office might help people perform better at work.

Psychologists from San Francisco State University found that the more people engaged in their hobbies, the more likely they were to come up with creative solutions to problems on the job. And no matter what the hobby was, these people were also more likely to go out of their way to help co-workers.

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The Two-Way
3:02 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Scientists Spot A Planet That Looks Like 'Earth's Cousin'

An artist's rendering of Kepler-186f, the first validated Earth-size planet to orbit in the habitable zone of a distant star.
T. Pyle NASA/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 8:06 pm

Scientists who have been hunting for another Earth beyond our solar system have come across a planet that's remarkably similar to our world.

It's almost the same size as Earth, and it orbits in its star's "Goldilocks zone" — where temperatures are not too hot, not too cold, and maybe just right for life.

But a lot about this planet is going to remain a mystery, because it's 500 light-years away.

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The Salt
2:59 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Chili Say What? Linguistics Help Pinpoint Pepper's Origins

New research has traced chili peppers back to their origin in eastern Mexico.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 7:29 pm

Count us among those who just can't get enough chili pepper news.

These spicy fruits are beloved around the world for their ability to sex up nearly any cuisine. They're the world's most widely grown spice crop, so it's hard to imagine that their reach was once limited to the early farmers in what is now eastern Mexico.

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