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America: A Secular Nation? Ten Point Vision Finalist
Vote now for the best video: http://richarddawkins.net/contest/finalists/ Learn about: "A Ten Point Vision of a Secular America: Restoring the Values of America's Founders": http://richarddawkins.net/videos/644419 This video is 1 of 7 finalists in the The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science social media contest. ------ Credits ------ Bruce DeShetler
La France a-t-elle encore une identité géographique ? / Armand Frémont
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L’identité de la France est un objet obscur. Le territoire national avait trouvé son aboutissement à la frontière physique. Aujourd’hui la solidarité, la socialité et l’être ensemble ne se définissent plus uniquement par référence à une étendue spatiale continue sur laquelle s’exerce la souveraineté de l’État-national. Les frontières qui se dessinent à travers les réseaux sociaux ou la conscience partagée d’
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California Academy of Sciences: AntWeb
AntWeb, an excellent service of the California Academy of Sciences, provides users with "tools for exploring the diversity and identification of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). These tools have been developed to facilitate the use of ants in inventory and monitoring programs and provide ant taxonomists with images and types." At present, AntWeb offers information on all ant genera worldwide as well as highlighting ants of Madagascar and California in particular. The site provides a search engine
Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST) Observatory Architecture and Performance
Although not scheduled to be launched until 2011, design plans for the Hubble Space Telescope's replacement are already underway. This research paper describes some of the architectural and performance specifications slated for the Next Generation Space Telescope (now called the James Webb Space Telescope). The seven-meter primary mirror will be hexagonal and made up of twelve smaller one-meter mirrors, allowing the observatory to see "objects 400 times fainter than seen from large groundbased t
The New Zealand GeoNet Project
"The New Zealand GeoNet Project provides real-time monitoring and data collection for rapid response and research into earthquake, volcano, landslide and tsunami hazards." At the website, researchers can obtain seismic, GPS time series, landslide, quake, and strong motion data. Through the use of remote cameras, the site furnishes pictures of five of New Zealand's volcanoes. Students and educators can find an abundance of information about the country's natural hazards along with many wonderful,
The Platonic Realms website is a project initiated by a small group of math and math education graduate students, led by B. Sidney Smith, at the University of Colorado at Boulder. The group's goal is "to provide high-quality mathematical content for secondary-school and college students that was free, motivational, and instructional." The introductory page features a historical note, a daily quotation, a daily mathematics challenge, humorous articles, and a "math moment" which uses multi-media t
Utah Geological Survey's Web site, Utah Geology, offers a variety of interesting geological information about the state. Good descriptions, illustrations, and photographs can be accessed on earthquakes and hazards, dinosaurs and fossils, rocks and minerals, oil and energy, and more. For example, the Rocks and Minerals page contains everything from how to stake a mining claim to downloadable summaries of mineral activity in the state. There is quite a bit of information within the site, and anyon
The US Department of Interior Web site offers a hot topics section that currently includes information about coalbed methane. The links include a fact sheet entitled "Coalbed Methane--An Untapped Energy Resource and an Environmental Concern." A documents link takes visitors to a page maintained by Wyoming's Bureau of Land Management that contains several reports related to the topic, including information about Atlantic Rim Coalbed Methane Projects and Coalbed Methane and Water Monitor Well Data
Tutorial on Optimization Theory and Difference and Differential Equations
This online tutorial is intended for college students taking an early course in mathematical optimization or linear differential equations. Although it is written by a professor of economics, little economic theory is presented. This keeps the material centered on the mathematical aspects of optimization and differential equations, which have a wide range of scientific applications. The text is very well organized and is accompanied by illustrative figures. No prerequisites to the tutorial are l
Students design, build and test model race cars made from simple materials (lifesaver-shaped candies, plastic drinking straws, Popsicle sticks, index cards, tape) as a way to explore independent, dependent and control variables. They measure the changes in distance travelled with the addition of mass to the vehicles. Students also practice the steps of the engineering design process by brainstorming, planning, building, testing, and improving their “mint-mobiles.”
Building Tetrahedral Kites
Working in teams of four, students build tetrahedral kites following specific instructions and using specific materials. They use the basic processes of manufacturing systems – cutting, shaping, forming, conditioning, assembling, joining, finishing, and quality control – to manufacture complete tetrahedral kites within a given time frame. Project evaluation takes into account team efficiency and the quality of the finished product.
Students utilize data tables culled from the US DOE Energy Information Agency to create graphs that illustrate what types of energy we use and how we use it. An MS Excel workbook with several spreadsheets of data is provided. Students pick (or the teacher assigns) one of the data tables for the students to create a plot from and interpret the information provided. Each student group shares their interpretation and new perspectives on energy resources and use with the class.
Students learn that wind and storms can form at the boundaries of interacting high and low pressure air masses. They learn the distinguishing features of the four main types of weather fronts (warm fronts, cold fronts, stationary fronts and occluded fronts) and how these fronts are depicted on a surface weather analysis, or weather map. Students also learn several different ways that engineers help with storm prediction, analysis and protection.
How Much Water Do You Use?
Students keep track of their own water usage for one week, gaining an understanding of how much water is used for various everyday activities. They relate their own water usages to the average residents of imaginary Thirsty County, and calculate the necessary water capacity of a dam that would provide residential water to the community.
The Boxes Go Mobile
To display the results from the previous activity, each student designs and constructs a mobile that contains a duplicate of his or her original box, the new cube-shaped box of the same volume, the scraps that are left over from the original box, and pertinent calculations of the volumes and surface areas involved.
Engineering for the Earth
Young students are introduced to the complex systems of the Earth through numerous lessons on the Earth’s natural resources, processes, weather, climate and landforms. Key earth science topics include rocks, soils and minerals, water and natural resources, weather patterns and climatic regions, wind, erosion, landforms, and the harvesting of fossil fuels — all presented from an engineering point-of-view. (See the Unit Overview section for a list of topics by lesson.) Through many hands-on ac
What is Energy?
With an introduction to the ideas of energy, students discuss specific types of energy and the practical sources of energy. Hands-on activities help them identify types of energy in their surroundings and enhance their understanding of energy.
Breaking away from the math book : creative projects for K-8
This site, developed by two university instructors, offers 37 lesson plans for hands-on learning activities for grades K-8 to reinforce or introduce concepts. Lessons cover a multitude of topics. Several involve constructing containers; these require students to look at the connection between dimensions and volume. For example, the lesson on Capacity has students make several boxes of different dimensions and calculate the capacity of each box. The boxes are then used to measure dry rice. Other
Are You An Energy Efficient Consumer?
This activity engages students in learning about ways to become energy efficient consumers. Students examine how different countries and regions around the world use energy over time as reflected in night light levels. They then track their own energy use, identify ways to reduce their individual energy consumption, and explore how community choices impact the carbon footprint.