SCIENCE IN THE NEWS DAILY
Before Darwin: How the Earth Went from Lifeless to Life
from the Scientist (Registration Required)
Even as political rhetoric and court battles reflect a public struggle over Darwin's theory of evolution as an explanation for the origin of humans, a different struggle is unfolding within science about the adequacy of evolution as a theoretical foundation for biology.
On the surface, the two debates seem to have little to do with one another, but in a subtle way both reflect the need for a richer theoretical biology. The perception of evolution among the wider public might even be improved by better communication of scientific concerns about the limitations of evolutionary theory, and how those concerns are being addressed.
A sympathetic reading of public distrust over evolution would be that a simple theory of change seems too bare to account for the richness of structure we see in the world around us, and for how that structure first came to form.
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PODCASTS: Expanding With the Cosmos
Using the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ATC), a 6.5-meter microwave collector in Chile, cosmologists are piecing together the early history of the known universe. In an exclusive American Scientist interview, Arthur Kosowsky—a member of the ATC team and a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Pittsburgh—discusses how he is using ATC to reach back in time billions of years to search for gravitational waves that could verify inflation and reveal unprecedented details about how the cosmos was born.
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