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Part 20 claim

Subject: Law

A claim other than a claim by the claimant against the defendant. It includes (1) a counterclaim by the defendant against the claimant; (2) a counterclaim by the defendant against a third ...

Bernal's ladder

Bernal's ladder   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
608 words

...asteroids might cause huge volcanic outpourings ( see Flood basalts ). A claim by scientists in Italy to have detected exotic particles coming from the cosmos was also doubted ( see Dark matter ), as was a suggestion from Ireland that a gamma-ray burst was involved in the origin of the Earth ( see Minerals in space ). On rung 2, where a simple denial was no longer possible but the implications were largely unheeded, was the evidence that the evolution of species plays a significant part in the response of ecosystems to current changes ( see Eco-evolution )....

phrenology and physiognomy

phrenology and physiognomy   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to the History of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
886 words

...on the size of different parts of the brain. He initiated studies on the correlation between structures and functions. However, his evidence was anecdotal, and controversy over his claims drove him to seek evidence in dissections and demonstrations. In 1800 he attracted a disciple, Johann Christoph Spurzheim , who assisted in anatomical researches until they parted company in 1813 . During their collaboration they published the first two volumes of Gall's Anatomie et physiologies du systéme nerveux (5 vols., 1810–1819 ). These elaborate studies...

Human ecology

Human ecology   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,236 words

...rich by burning fossil fuels, and where most of the ancient forests were destroyed long ago. Nothing would curb the God-given right to an automobile. Yet there, city-dwellers who had never known a day's hunger or faced down a snake claimed special authority to speak on behalf of the Earth and its delicate ecosystems in every part of the globe. Most vocal were European and American non-governmental organizations through which unelected activists sought to rule the world. The evident need for action to protect the planet brought the message: ‘Don't do as we do;...

Discovery

Discovery   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,519 words

... but it is usually credited to a 20th-century philosopher, Karl Popper of London , who regarded it as a lynchpin of science. Paul Feyerabend was Popper's star pupil and, like him, Austrian-born. But at UC Berkeley, Feyerabend rebelled against his master. ‘The idea that science can, and should, be run according to fixed and universal rules, is both unrealistic and pernicious,’ he wrote. He declared that the only rule that survives is ‘Anything goes.’ Also at Berkeley was the most influential historian of science in the 20th century, the physicist Thomas...

Sun's interior

Sun's interior  

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

...Eddington of Cambridge explained in 1926 . ‘It is natural that you should feel rather sceptical about our claim that we know how hot it is in the very middle of a star—and you may be still more sceptical when I divulge the actual figure!’ Eddington suggested 40 million degrees C for the Sun's core temperature, and although that was later cut back to 15 million, it was still hot enough for nuclear reactions to occur. In 1938 , in another of the great 20th-century discoveries about the Sun, Hans Bethe of Cornell figured out the source of the Sun's power, in a...

Altruism and aggression

Altruism and aggression   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,781 words

...there are genes “for” traits like altruism,’ Axelrod remarked. ‘There might well be genes that play a part, for example giving us the capacity to remember people we've met before, but they almost surely don't operate independently of environment.’ He thereby drew a line under old battles about nature and nurture. These had been renewed with great fervour during the 1970s, in the wake of the new theories of altruism. Some enthusiasts for sociobiology claimed that most of social behaviour, from rape to religion, would soon be understood primarily in genetic...

Immortality

Immortality   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
2,299 words

...remarkable progress has come from more direct investigations of mortality and immortality in living cells. Hayflick's limit and Olovnikov's train Research on ageing in the mid-20th century was confounded by a misleading report by a French scientist, Alexis Carrel . In 1929 he declared that ordinary animal cells grown in a lab culture would thrive indefinitely. By 1946 he was claiming to have kept cells from a chicken's heart alive for 34 years. When nobody else managed to make normal cells survive like that, sloppy work by the scientist, or by some...

Biodiversity

Biodiversity  

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

...similar to the latter part of Grime's: ‘Highest diversity is maintained at intermediate scales of disturbance’. The idea came to be known in the USA as the ‘intermediate disturbance hypothesis’. Applied in the tropical rain forests, the implication was that moderate damage by windstorms, and perhaps by the temporary clearances of slash-and-burn farming or even limited logging, should tend to increase the number of species in an area. The idea that moderate human interference might be less harmful than it was often claimed to be, and could even help to...

Climate change

Climate change   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,591 words

... Climate Change blamed the moderate warming of the 20th century on man-made gases, and predicted a much greater warming of 3°C in the 21st century, accompanied by rising sea-levels. This scenario prompted the world's leaders to sign, just two years later, a climate convention promising to curb emissions of greenhouse gases. Thenceforward, someone or other blamed man-made global warming for every great windstorm, flood or drought, just as global cooling had been blamed for the same kinds of events, 20 years earlier. Ever-more complex models The alarm about...

Superstrings

Superstrings  

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

...if you are talking purely mathematically, there is no imaginative problem about many dimensions. With a pocket calculator you can multiply 2 by 2, which is like describing a square, by 2 again which gives a cube. But then you can go on multiplying by 2 as often as you like, and claim 100 dimensions if you wish, without blowing either your calculator or your mind. Another approach to the puzzle is to think of an extremely versatile string in ordinary three-dimensional space. Picture it in the form of a flat tape that can vibrate up and down, which is easy, and...

Universe

Universe  

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

...a kilometre high, his opponents retorted. The clustering scales would stop increasing at some point, just as the twig-branch-tree progression does, so that everything would still average out eventually. Up to the end of the century, Mandelbrot and a circle of supporters could claim that clusters and the voids between them did indeed seem to grow in scale, the farther out the astronomers took their measurements of the distances of galaxies. But then new surveys made leaps to much greater distances, and there was no sign of the predicted...

El Niño

El Niño   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
1,862 words

...supercomputers, satellites and a network of buoys deployed across the Pacific by a US–French–Japanese cooperative effort. But results so far are disappointing. In 2000 Christopher Landsea and John Knaff of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration evaluated claims that the 1997–98 El Niño had been well predicted. They gave all the forecasts poor marks, including those from what were supposedly the most sophisticated computer models. Landsea said, ‘When you look at the totality of the event, there wasn't much skill, if any.’ Regrettably,...

Europe and Russia

Europe and Russia   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to the History of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
2,801 words

...vis-à-vis their national state bureaucracies, however, offers further opportunities for the scientists of Europe to cement broader institutional alliances that constrain national policy makers. European political union remains anything but certain, yet most scientists continue to claim “Europe” as one of the surest means (whether directly or indirectly) for the local advancement of science on a global stage. See also Academics and Learned Societies ; Associations for the Advancement of Science ; Nobel Prize ; Standardization ; University ; World War II and...

Elements

Elements   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,688 words

...of modern telescopes. The multinational Infrared Ultraviolet Explorer was the quickest satellite on the case and its data revealed exactly which star blew up. Sanduleak −69° 202 was about 20 times more massive than the Sun. Contrary to textbook expectations it was not a red star but a blue supergiant. The detection of a shell of gas, puffed off from the precursor star 20,000 years earlier, explained a recent colour change from red to blue. Telescopes in space and on the ground registered signatures of various chemical elements newly made by the dying star....

Prehistoric genes

Prehistoric genes   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,189 words

...a hunter-gatherer found in England's Cheddar Gorge in 1986 . The man lived at least 7000 years before farming arrived in his region. And his mother-only genes corresponded with the commonest variants found in modern Europeans. Putting that the other way, most Europeans could claim direct descent from Europe's Old Stone Age hunters. In 1996 Sykes's team published an analysis of Palaeolithic and Neolithic ancestors in Europe, based on mother-only genes in 821 individuals from Europe and the Middle East. They distinguished five lineages indigenous to Europe...

Big Bang

Big Bang   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,946 words

... 3rd Brandenburg Concerto strike Douglas Adams , the British writer of the comic science-fiction radio serial A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy . He concluded: ‘Bach tells you what it's like to be the Universe.’ As modern cosmology is indeed all bubble and fizz, Bach has a claim. The name of the Big Bang, for a clamant origin of the cosmos, was meant to be a put-down when Fred Hoyle of Cambridge first used it scornfully in a radio talk in 1950 . But supporters of the hypothesis were a merry lot. Its main champion at that time was George Gamow of...

Gamma-ray bursts

Gamma-ray bursts  

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

...of GRB 990123. The reason given was that the journal had too many papers about the event already. Would he care to send in a brief note about his observations? Heise said No, and commented to a reporter, ‘We sometimes feel we point towards the treasure and other people go and claim the gold.’ The wide-field X-ray cameras on BeppoSAX watched only five per cent of the sky at any time, and an even more distant gamma-ray burst, in 2000 , was out of their view. Three spacecraft, widely separated in the Solar System, registered the gamma rays: Wind fairly close...

High-speed travel

High-speed travel   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
3,092 words

...many ways of looking at the problem for any one of them to provide a knockdown argument. The matter was not decided until atomic clocks became accurate enough for an experimental test in aircraft. ‘I don't trust these professors who get up and scribble in front of blackboards, claiming they understand it all,’ said Richard Keating of the US Naval Observatory. ‘I've made too many measurements where they don't come up with the numbers they say.’ In that abrasive mood it is worth giving a few details of an experiment that many people have not taken seriously...

Tree of life

Tree of life  

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

...and plants, some enthusiasts for the new picture were ready to cast doubt on the definition of species even in those kingdoms. Among the scientists who reacted angrily was Charles Kurland of Uppsala . He protested that ‘Nothing in science is more self-aggrandizing than the claim that “all that went before me is wrong”.’ The importance of gene transfer in the evolution of microbes was no longer in doubt, but Doolittle had good reason to query its importance in animals and plants. These are multicelled creatures, with intricate bodily organizations that...

Speech

Speech   Reference library

Magic Universe: A Grand Tour of Modern Science

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Science and technology, History of Science
Length:
2,949 words

...of them, in a pattern that indicated a classic hereditary disorder involving a mutation in a single gene. Linguists from McGill University, in Montreal, and neuroscientists from the Institute of Child Health, in London, examined the family, which was codenamed KE. The linguists claimed that the affected members of the KE family had a specific problem with grammar. The neuroscientists reported that the speech problems were associated with more general language difficulties, affecting the identification of speech sounds and the understanding of sentences. ‘The...

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