This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. Stem cell therapy, it seems, is always promising, promising to cure diseases or illnesses. And this week, a study using embryonic stem cells has increased the hope of fulfilling some of those promises.
Time now for our Video Pick of the Week. Flora Lichtman, our multimedia editor is here. Hi, Flora.
FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Hi, Ira.
FLATOW: Good video as always.
(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)
LICHTMAN: Yeah. This one is about something that I encounter every day, and I think of it as little more than a beverage cooler or maybe a nuisance on my commute to work. I'm talking about ice. But it turns out that ice was way more interesting than I knew before (unintelligible)...
A 33,000-year-old skull of a "wolf on the way to becoming a dog" was found in a Siberian cave. Evolutionary Biologist Susan Crockford, co-author of a study about the skull in PLoS ONE, discusses why the discovery challenges common beliefs about dog domestication.
In his book, Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science, Physicist Michael Nielsen discusses why scientists jealously guard their data and are slow to adopt online tools for collaboration. Nielsen talks about why attempts to create science wikipedias have failed.
Imagine walking into Jamba Juice for your favorite smoothie fix, and when it's time to pay, instead of pulling out cash or a credit card, you just tap your phone on a reader, and you're ready to go. Better yet, when you tapped your phone to pay it, it also redeems an electronic coupon stored in your phone, so you end up paying even less. Yeah. Well, people in fact can already do this at Jamba Juice using Google Wallet on certain Android phones. You can use it at Macy's, Bloomingdales, Duane Reade.
This week solar flares sent a huge blast of X-rays and charged particles screaming towards the Earth. Solar astronomer David Hathaway and physicist Doug Biesecker discuss the sun's explosive behavior, and how that 'space weather' affects satellites, airplanes and the electric grid.
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. After the Deepwater Horizon spill, BP poured nearly two million gallons of dispersants into the Gulf of Mexico. The goal, of course, is breaking up oil slicks, making them dissolve into ocean waters, sort of like how you squirt dish soap on a greasy frying pan to get the oil to wash away with the water.
Glory Ndudi, a Christian, and her five children board a bus headed out of town on Wednesday. The recent bomb attacks that have targeted churches in Kano, Nigeria, have led to an exodus of Christians from the city.
Credit Grant Clark / NPR
A radical Islamic group, Boko Haram, carried out a series of bombings in Kano, in northern Nigeria, including an attack on police headquarters, shown in this photo from Jan. 22.
The New Road bus station in the heart of Kano is a scene of bedlam.
Men, women and children are milling around, with huge bundles and baggage in all shapes and sizes, waiting to be loaded onto half a dozen buses. Others are already onboard. They're in a desperate hurry to head south, leaving behind this troubled city in the north of Nigeria.