World View

World View

Be a part of Global Change!

✦ ✦ Unlabelled ✦ Engines of ingenuity

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19 Jan 2012
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We've got two copies of Catherine Brady's book, Elizabeth Blackburn and the Story of Telomeres, to give away! For your chance to win, send your answer to the question below to Our favourite, most creative answers will win.

Question: Elizabeth Blackburn was Australia’s first female Nobel Prize winner. What woman in science, working now or in the past, do you admire and why?

And we're still running our animals-only Where in the COSMOS? competition, so send a photo of an animal reading an issue of COSMOS magazine to for your chance to win one of three TINTIN - The Complete Collection DVDs. The three winning photos will also feature in an upcoming issue of the magazine!

And congratulations to Christopher Storey, Ursula Mahaffey and Ann Clancy - your lightning-fast responses to last week's question won each of you a copy of Cosmic Heritage!


The Doomsday Clock is a meaningless gimmick, according to 37% of you, while 35% of you think that while the message is important, it doesn't need to be written on a giant clock. Twenty-eight percent of you think this is an important way of communicating how dire the situation is. View the full results and add your comments

NEW POLL: Do you think energy drinks should be treated like non-prescription drugs? Have your say.


Dogs are receptive to human communication cues in a similar way to how human infants read their parents, according to a new study.
climate change deaths

Climate change could quadruple deaths

Climate change may quadruple the loss of life
due to extreme heat in Brisbane, an Australian study
has predicted.
intelligence changes with age

Cognitive ageing is partly in the genes

Differences in our genes contribute to how well we maintain our cognitive abilities over the course of our lives, according to a new study.
titan's atmosphere earthlike

Climate cycle reveals Titan as Earth-like

Saturn's moon Titan is more Earth-like than previously thought, with two distinct layers in the lower atmosphere that affect the moon's wind patterns, dune spacing and cloud formation.
energy drinks danger

Emergency calls highlight energy drink danger

The dangerous side effects of energy drinks have been highlighted by a reported increase in calls to emergency departments and poisons centres, say Australian scientists.
Phobos-Grunt crash

Phobos-Grunt crashes into Pacific Ocean

In a spectacular end to a failed mission, pieces of a Russian spacecraft Phobos-Grunt appear to have crashed into the Pacific Ocean in the early hours of Monday morning.
dogs read humans

4th Annual National Communication Officers' Conference 2012 by Liquid Learning
Essential skills and practical tools to enhance the performance of communication professionals in a rapidly evolving environment. EXPLORE: Maintaining Alignment between Communication Strategy and Patterns of Media Use; Effectively Engaging the Media, Stakeholders and the Community in an Ongoing Conversation; Apply Proactive Approaches to Crisis Communication & Reputation Management; Achieving a Measurable Results from Social Media and Online Communication. Download the brochure here (PDF) or visit


Apple iPhone

Engines of ingenuity

~ Wilson da Silva

GOLD RUSHES can make a city: the feverish migration of fortune seekers brings a sharp economic stimulus, massive government spending on infrastructure and a general feeling of prosperity.

Cities such as Melbourne, San Francisco and Dunedin were made rich and cultured by their respective gold rushes. San Francisco – a tiny settlement of 200 in 1846 in a California then under U.S. military occupation following the Mexican-American War – grew to a boomtown of 36,000 by 1852. Roads, churches, schools and new towns rapidly sprang up across the state.

In Dunedin, which I visited for the first time in November 2011 for the inaugural ScienceTeller Festival, the gold rush brought New Zealand's first daily newspaper, art school, medical school and public art gallery, as well as a remarkable architectural flowering that is still resplendent today.



 Australian Synchrotron  funding

Why the Australian Synchrotron matters

Funding for the operation of the Australian Synchrotron is in crisis. Should you care? And what is it anyway?
euphrates river

River of life

The birthplace of both agriculture and civilisation,
Syria's Euphrates River is again facing turmoil and change - environmental as well as political. Fiona MacDonald travels to the ancient waterway.
sexual evolution

Sexual evolution

While sex purges our genome of harmful mutations and pushes biodiversity, it's a costly exercise for the average organism. So when, and why, did it all begin? John Long trawls the fossil record to find out.


Zombie snail

Beware the zombie parasites

COSMOS intern Jenna takes a look into the bizarre world of parasites and parasitoids in a gruesome tale of zombies.
Cyborg future

A cyborg reality

Research into cyborg technology is ever-increasing, but what would a 'cyborg world' look like? COSMOS intern Renae ponders the possibilities.
Apple iPhone

Engines of ingenuity

Australia has unparalleled opportunity to leapfrog beyond painful boom-bust economic cycles by investing in our intellectual capital to ensure prosperity. But will we?


scott cummins

The sex lives of sea slugs

As Aplysia sea slugs gather en masse, looking for love on the ocean floor, Scott Cummins is there to study them.
bent weber

Down to the wire

The fabrication of the thinnest-ever conducting silicon wire is providing the next step towards the world's first quantum computer, thanks to PhD student Bent Weber.


Seven Wonders of the Universe that You Probably Took for Granted

This author makes a big promise: to explore seven wonders of not just the world, but of the entire universe, in a book only a few hundred pages long.
the polluters

The Polluters

The Polluters looks at the U.S.'s pollution history from the 1860s to the 1960s, and reveals the buried truth about how industries used economic and political power to dodge environmental regulation.


REVERSE AGEING As we face a global ageing epidemic and the prospect of brain deterioration, a revolution in genetics is transforming the way we'll live in the future. Are you ready for a smarter, longer lifetime? It may be closer than you think. Plus, we look at the shaky foundations for putting the science of predicting earthquakes on trial, meet the world’s most astonishing predator, discover a clock so precise it would lose less than a second in the entire history of the universe and travel to South Australia to find out about the cutting-edge science and technology transforming this resource-rich state. Order your copy now! Read the digital edition immediately, or have a print edition sent to you.


Do you think adjusting the Doomsday Clock is a worthwhile exercise?
Yes, it reminds us of how dire the situation is here on Earth
No, it's just a gimmick, it doesn't mean anything
Maybe, but I don't need a clock to tell me things are bad

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