12:01am

Mon January 2, 2012
Science

Biotech Firms Caught In Regulatory No Man's Land

Companies making genetically modified animals face a regulatory morass in this country. It's not always clear which federal agency has responsibility for regulating a particular animal, and even when one agency does take the lead, the approval process can drag on for years.

The companies say this uncertainty means their technologies may die without ever being given a chance.

Take the case of the British company Oxitec. It has developed a genetically modified mosquito that the company says can be used to combat a disease called dengue.

Read more

4:47pm

Sun January 1, 2012
Education

An Amazing Trickeration?: Banished Words For 2012

During the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles on Aug. 28, 2011, singer Beyonce Knowles rubbed her stomach in the middle of the performance to reveal her baby bump. "Baby bump" is one of the words on Lake Superior State University's list of banished words this year.
Jemal Countess Getty Images

On New Year's day in 1977, Lake Superior State University in Michigan released its first "List of Words Banished from the Queen's English for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness". Every year since then, it has taken nominations for words and phrases we should quit using in the coming year. Last year's list included such anti-favorites as "viral," "epic" and "refudiate."

In Washington, D.C., pedestrians nominated "ping me", "literally" used incorrectly, "bro," "hater," "hating," "totes" and "amazing."

Read more

4:24pm

Sun January 1, 2012
U.S.

A Quick Look At The Year Ahead

As the new year gets under way, we take a quick temperature check on some key areas to see what the prognosis might be. The topics: politics — domestic and global — and economics.

3:45pm

Sun January 1, 2012
Education

Physicists Seek To Lose The Lecture As Teaching Tool

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 6:32 pm

The lecture is one of the oldest forms of education there is.

"Before printing someone would read the books to everybody who would copy them down," says Joe Redish, a physics professor at the University of Maryland.

But lecturing has never been an effective teaching technique and now that information is everywhere, some say it's a waste of time. Indeed, physicists have the data to prove it.

When Eric Mazur began teaching physics at Harvard, he started out teaching the same way he had been taught.

Read more

3:44pm

Sun January 1, 2012
World

Expect The Unexpected: Global Politics In 2012

The world will see big political changes with leadership shifts in China, Mexico, Russia, Europe, Egypt and particularly in the Middle East during 2012, according to David Rothkopf, a contributor to Foreign Policy Magazine.

"We're halfway through the initial wave of these [Middle Eastern] revolutions," says Rothkopf, adding that much more change is to come.

But it is possible that one of the biggest political changes won't happen in a physical location, but on the Internet. Rothkopf thinks that we could see a big escalation of cyber wars between nations.

Read more

3:44pm

Sun January 1, 2012
Economy

Global Economy Might Improve In 2012

Originally published on Sun January 1, 2012 4:26 pm

What's the economic prognosis for 2012?

"It's kind of a meh, it's a B-minus," says Annie Lowrey, an economic policy reporter for The New York Times. "It's not going to be very good, but it's also not going to be very bad."

Lowrey says that most of the trends seen at the end of 2011 will continue into 2012. The unemployment rate is high, but improving. Economists are excited about the housing market because the low cost of housing has started a house-building mini-boom.

Read more

3:44pm

Sun January 1, 2012
Election 2012

Will Republicans Sweep The 2012 Elections?

Originally published on Sun January 1, 2012 4:15 pm

Rep. Shelley Berkley, D-Nev., speaks to young Hispanic voters at a Nevada Democratic Party event on Nov. 11 in Las Vegas. Campaign staff and volunteers for President Obama are pushing the Hispanic vote in swing states like Nevada, which can help congressional candidates like Berkley in her run for re-election.
Julie Jacobson AP

It's still too early to call the 2012 elections, but some political analysts are predicting that the odds are against congressional Democrats in 2012, though the presidential race may still be a toss-up.

Read more

3:44pm

Sun January 1, 2012

1:35pm

Sun January 1, 2012
Environmental Watchdog

New Standards for Energy Efficient Light Bulbs

New energy standards for light bulbs take effect this year. The new standards don’t mean that the old incandescent light bulbs won’t be sold anymore. But they do say the old bulbs have to be more efficient. The rules go into effect for 100 watt bulbs first, and will require a bulb that puts out the same amount of light to only use 72 watts of power. Or, consumers can use compact florescent bulbs.

Read more

1:30pm

Sun January 1, 2012
All Politics are Local

2012 General Assembly Tackles Important Issues

Amid continued budget hardships and a slew of issues which need immediate action, state and local officials are preparing to tackle challenges which continue to plague the state. With the upcoming legislative session just days away, local lawmakers and officials are looking to the upcoming session, which begins Jan. 3, with hopes that issues such as prescription drug abuse, coal severance funding and education will receive attention during what some feel may be one of the most important sessions in recent memory.

Pages