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Archive for the ‘Sine Qua Non’ Category


A mystery virus struck me down this weekend, leaving me largely useless for blogging much of this week. However, I’ve recovered just in time to head off to the 2010 Evolution Meeting in Portland, Oregon. I’ll be on the first train out of Seattle tomorrow morning.

I’m not sure how much time I’ll have for blogging while I’m at the meeting. So, consider this week a freebie. This blog is still young enough that you can still easily browse the monthly archives:
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010
June 2010

See you next week!

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Sine Qua Non: Part 2

My mother is visiting me. I’m taking her to Oregon to show her Portland, Haystack Rock, and Tillamook cheese curds. Thus, I’ll likely have neither the time nor internet connection to post anything until Wednesday of next week at the earliest.

While I’m away, here are a few bits of science news you could brush up on:

  • An ancient human relative has been discovered.  As published in this week’s Science (and covered nicely by the New York Times), Australopithecus sediba lived some 2 million years ago, based on fossilized remains of two individuals found in South Africa.  A. sediba was a hominid — bipedal with many human qualities, but still rather ape-like in many respects.  The find adds another wrinkle to what we know about hominid evolution.  There are already numerous hominid species in the genus Australopithecus (including A. afarensis, the species of the famous 3.2 million-year-old “Lucy” fossil), and our own genus Homo.  It seems hominid evolution branched in to many different forms, though only our branch of the family tree ultimately survived and thrived.
  • Scientists have reported a unique group of animals from the deep Mediterranean Sea: a group of tiny animals that can survive and reproduce without any need for oxygen.  While oxygen-free microbes have been known for some time, this is a first for the animal kingdom.
  • The space shuttle Discovery, on the fourth-from-last space shuttle mission, has successfully docked with the International Space Station.  Astronauts are preparing for their first space walk for this mission as the shuttle delivers much-needed supplies and research equipment to the station.  You can read more about the shuttle mission here.

You can also browse the Adaptive Radiation archives to read posts you might’ve missed!

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Sine Qua Non

For those of you who have become loyal readers over this science blog’s brief life, an announcement:

I journey today to Texada Island in the Strait of Georgia to attend the Texada Stickleback Group meeting. I’ll likely have no mobile phone service after crossing the Canadian border (something I’ve never understood about mobile phone service with the closest economic and political ally of the United States), and sparse internet access on Texada. Thus, no new posts until next week!

Until then, read some science news on your own:

Happy trails!

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