Science and technology micro-summaries for July 21, 2019

The moon landing's Futura font.; About Snowball Earth; 10,000 fake authors claimed in three years of scientific journals; Improving science with multifactorial experiments; A parasite that completely replaces a fish tongue

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Links and micro-summaries from my 1000+ daily headlines. I filter them so you don't have to.


  1. How a typeface helped launch Apollo - In his TED talk, Douglas Thomas discusses the history that led to the Futura font's use in the 1969 Apollo Moon Landing. The fascinating story of the font's evolution begins with political undertones in the 1920s, before being adopted into military cartography and eventually the Mercury and Apollo programs.

  2. How Volcanoes Froze the Earth (Twice) - Between 716 and 635 million years ago, the Earth was completely covered in ice upon two episodes of 15-30 million years, known as "Snowball Earth". The geological time period is known as the Cryogenian. During these time periods, glaciers even covered the equator. The leading theory to explain it is that the planet's "thermostat", or CO2 cycle, was interrupted by massive volcanic reactions. It was only when animals began to thrive again that the planet's so-called thermostat was able to reset itself. h/t RealClear Science

  3. Exclusive: Russian site says it has brokered authorships for more than 10,000 researchers - The Russian web site,, says it has, "added the names of more than 10,000 researchers to more than 2,000 published articles in scholarly journals over the past three years". The site says that they can add you as a first author on a scholarly paper for a fee of $500. Scholarly indexer Web of Science has demanded that the web site cease doing business, but as-of now there is no indication that the web site plans to comply

  4. To Fix the Reproducibility Crisis, Rethink How We Do Experiments - The cost of the Reproducibility Crisis is huge. For example, it is estimated that $28 billion was spent on studies that could not be replicated in 2015 alone. The article argues that a multifactorial approach to science may be more reliable than the current "best practice" of studying one variable at a time. In complex areas that are filled with interdependence, like biology, the article argues that a holistic design of the experiment (DOE) is necessary.

  5. STEEM Parasite that completely replaces the host organ - According to, the Cymothoa exigua attaches itself to a fish tongue in a way that causes the tongue to fall off from lack of blood. Amazingly, the fish is then able to use the parasite - which feeds off the fish mucous - as a replacement tongue. The article notes that the organism is safe for humans, except that it may bite if held. (5% of the rewards from this post will be directed to

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Comments 3

thanks for your work
really interesting set of articles.

21.07.2019 20:47

Nice sharing bro ☺.

20.09.2019 12:26