Episode #748

News Items

  • Does Music Make You Smarter
  • Measles and Immunity
  • Bill Maher Anti-Vaxxer
              • Science or Fiction

                • Item #1 Fiction

                  A new review of published research concludes that one medium-sized potted plant per average household room purifies the air as well as standard ventilation. https://drexel.edu/now/archive/2019/November/potted-plants-do-not-improve-air-quality/

                • Item #2 Science

                  Researchers detail the mechanisms by which some bacteria directly feed on electricity for energy. https://earthsky.org/earth/scientists-study-bacteria-that-eat-and-breathe-electricity

                • Item #3 Science

                  A new study finds that flagging news items on Facebook as fake had no effect on whether subjects thought they were true, which was entirely determined by alignment with their existing beliefs, regardless of their party affiliation. https://misq.org/fake-news-on-social-media-people-believe-what-they-want-to-believe-when-it-makes-no-sense-at-all.html

                Skeptical Quote of the Week

                ‘There are so many ways to be involved in science. And, what I really need out there, across the world, is people that just appreciate the idea that the universe is so beautiful, that we can work together to understand it. Whatever you’re doing in life, you can be part of that adventure.’ - Michelle Thaller, assistant director for Science Communication at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center