Comet Dances With Mars - #newsfornerds

Category: Cool Science
  • 10/18/2014 |
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Comet Dances With Mars - #newsfornerds
Our solar system may be a tiny speck in the galaxy, but it's still massive. So when a comet rushes in from the Oort Cloud and sweeps past the inner planets, there's usually lots of room to maneuver. But not always. This weekend a comet named Siding Spring makes a beeline for Mars, and will ultimately pass within 87,000 miles of the Martian surface. How close is that? If it were zooming past Earth, it would be only a third of the distance between us and the moon. That, my friend, is close. Siding Spring is quite large, too, so an impact would've wreaked havoc. Our own pla …

Hello World, Meet Buster Blank

Category: Check This Out
  • 10/13/2014 |
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Hello World, Meet Buster Blank
A couple of years ago we received a fun phone call during our morning radio show (The Dom and Jane Show in Denver). To tell you the truth, I don't even remember what the call was about. But at some point during the conversation I said, "Well, I hope you can shake those demons. Ha ha!" For some reason that phrase stuck with me. I even pulled out my phone and made a note - it was February 8, 2012, and the first line was "Middle grade book." After that I typed in the words "Shaking Demons," and a quick synopsis of a boy who has to figure out how to evict a …

Artificial Sweeteners: Good or Bad? #newsfornerds

Category: Cool Science
  • 9/19/2014 |
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Artificial Sweeteners: Good or Bad?  #newsfornerds
Another week, another story about the dangers of artificial sweeteners. Millions of Americans use sweeteners such as Splenda every day, either directly in their coffee, or indirectly in diet sodas or other "sugar-free" foods. But a new study published in the journal Nature adds more credence to the idea that these products are still pretty bad for you. For years, conventional logic held that since artificial sweeteners cannot be digested, they don't contribute to conditions like diabetes. This new study, however, brings a new factor into play: gut microbes. It appears …

Smart Is Cool at Barnes & Noble

  • 9/16/2014 |
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Smart Is Cool at Barnes & Noble
It's a party this weekend at the Barnes & Noble on Colorado Blvd in Denver! Come out and get your signed copy of Smart Is Cool, my latest non-fiction book. If you have kids in elementary, middle school, or high school, you'll find out about the silent epidemic that too many students deal with on a regular basis: academic peer pressure to dumb down. I'll be chatting about the book, signing copies, and giving away some great prizes. Plus, because lots of people have asked, we're going to also have copies of the first three volumes in the award-winning Galahad s …

The Ballad of the Second Born Child #newsfornerds

Category: Cool Science
  • 9/12/2014 |
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  • 931 views
The Ballad of the Second Born Child  #newsfornerds
One of the big news stories of the week was the announcement that England's royal family is expecting a new addition next year. That's right, Will and Kate are having another baby. Among the most interesting elements of this story, however, is the question of birth order. More specifically, how does birth order affect our personalities? And what might that mean for a child born into such fame and privilege? This blog post from Time Magazine has a very clever perspective, but I wanted to dig a little deeper. Here are a few interesting nuggets that I found, courtesy of the jou …