There’s no significant connection between your personality as a teenager and a septuagenarian | Quartz


The findings were a surprise to researchers because previous personality studies, over shorter periods of time, seemed to show consistency.

Studies over several decades, focusing on participants from childhood to middle age, or from middle age to older age showed stable personality traits.

But the most recent study, covering the longest period, suggests that personality stability is disrupted over time.

Source: There’s no significant connection between your personality as a teenager and a septuagenarian — Quartz

Rosetta: How Pyrocon, a failed Japanese space mission, lucked into helping the European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission | Quartz


Procyon’s problems started twelve days after its 2014 launch.

A software bug caused a malfunction in one of the valves regulating the pressure of xenon, an easily ionized gas commonly used as propellant in ion thrusters. Another bug caused one of the engine control units to freeze each time a string of commands bigger than 256 kb was transmitted from Earth.

Then a valve started leaking. More and more issues started to crop up, raising doubts about the validity of the mission’s super-fast development and testing process.

Despite the ground team’s efforts, the seemingly fatal blow came in mid-March 2015 when Procyon’s ion engine broke down …

Source: Rosetta: How Pyrocon, a failed Japanese space mission, lucked into helping the European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission — Quartz

How the price of paint is set in the hearts of dying stars | Medium


The magic property is what’s called “angular momentum,” which basically measures how fast these outermost electrons are rotating around the nucleus.

Electrons in atoms get angular momentum only in fixed increments (there’s that quantum mechanics again, only fixed increments allowed) and for historical reasons, the first few increments are named “s,” “p,” “d,” and “f.”

On the periodic table, the elements whose outer electrons are “s” form the two tall leftmost columns; the “p” elements are the big square on the right; the “d” elements are the big block in the middle; and the “f” elements are the two rows off at the bottom.

(If we ever make element 121, it would be the first “g” element.)

Source: How the price of paint is set in the hearts of dying stars – Medium

Honeybees let out a ‘whoop’ when they bump into each other | New Scientist


By placing cameras inside the hive, the researchers discovered that the signal often happens when a bee bumps into another bee near the accelerometer, and not when bees are waggle dancing or exchanging food.

“We suggest that, in the majority of instances, it is bees being startled that produce the signal,” says Martin Bencsik. The team propose that instead of the “stop” signal, it should be called the “whooping” signal.

Source: Honeybees let out a ‘whoop’ when they bump into each other | New Scientist

Space startup Planet will go to India to launch a record-setting number of satellites on the PSLV rocket and image the world daily | Quartz


.. with so few options available to small satellite firms, the US has increasingly granted waivers for companies to contract with India.

Planet worked through a Dutch company, Innovative Solutions in Space, that handled the task of integrating Planet’s satellites into India’s launch vehicle, which Mike Safyan, the Planet executive responsible for launches, said smoothed the way for US government approval.

The launch will position Planet to be the dominant new provider in satellite imagery.

Source: Space startup Planet will go to India to launch a record-setting number of satellites on the PSLV rocket and image the world daily — Quartz

Renewables are no longer ‘alternative.’ Fossil fuels are ‘legacy.’


At stake is not only retirement security but whether the fossil fuel era ends with a crash landing or a (relatively) smooth transition to the low-carbon future — and whether that future comes quickly enough to avert the most extreme effects of climate change.

The shape of the future is becoming clearer, as first coal, and now oil and gas, give way to solar, wind and battery power.

Can I interest you in a soot-belching coal plant? Thought not.

How about a tar sands pipeline or long trains of coal or Arctic drilling?

Source: Renewables are no longer ‘alternative.’ Fossil fuels are ‘legacy.’

The very microbes that helped us evolve now make us sick | Aeon Ideas


Between the mid-1990s and the mid-2000s alone, the likelihood of having a classmate with a food allergy increased by 20 per cent in the United States.

In fact, over the past five decades, the incidence of all allergies and autoimmune diseases – caused by your body attacking itself – has skyrocketed.

So what has changed?

In short, it’s the standard for what constitutes a good microbe versus a bad one. ‘Take bacterial species that increase nutrient absorption from food,’ Ruslan Medzhitov says.

These were immensely beneficial at a time where you had to go days without eating. Today in the parts of the world with an overabundance of food, having such bacteria in your intestine contributes to obesity. ‘Microbes that cause intestinal inflammation are another example of what we call bad microbes because they induce [detrimental immune] responses. But in the past, these microbes could have protected you from intestinal pathogens,’ he adds.

Source: The very microbes that helped us evolve now make us sick | Aeon Ideas

When We Say Someone Is Drunk on Love, Is It Chemically True?


Take romantic love. Even a happy lover shows all of the characteristics of an addict.

Foremost, besotted men and women crave emotional and physical union with their beloved. This craving is a central component of all addictions. Lovers also feel a rush of exhilaration when thinking about him or her, a form of “intoxication.”

As their obsession builds, the lover seeks to interact with the beloved more and more, known in addiction literature as “intensification.” They also think obsessively about their beloved, a form of intrusive thinking fundamental to drug dependence.

Lovers also distort reality, change their priorities and daily habits to accommodate the beloved, and often do inappropriate, dangerous, or extreme things to remain in contact with or impress this special other.

Source: When We Say Someone Is Drunk on Love, Is It Chemically True?

Could Suicidal Behaviors Be the Result of Evolution?


Paul Andrews sees these symptoms as a nonrandom assortment betraying evolutionary design.

After all, why would a breakdown produce so synchronized a set of responses? And that design’s function, he argues, is to pull us away from the normal pursuits of life and focus us on understanding or solving the one underlying problem that triggered the depressive episode—say, a failed relationship.

If something is broken in your life, you need to bear down and mend it.

In this view, the disordered and extreme thinking that accompanies depression, which can leave you feeling worthless and make you catastrophize your circumstances, is needed to punch through everyday positive illusions and focus you on your problems.

Source: Could Suicidal Behaviors Be the Result of Evolution?

Why does exercise make us happy?

[INFOGRAPHICS]


Does exercise stress us out?

Your brain recognizes exercise as a moment of stress.

To counter stress, the body releases the protein BDNF (brain derived neurotropic factor) along with endorphins.

Source: Why does exercise make us happy?