Category Archives: News Roundup

news roundup again

I’m giving this News Roundup category another try. As I mentioned before: “Each post is a list of timely articles with excerpts but little or no commentary, perhaps updated over the course of the day.”

People power to warm new building in Stockholm (PhysOrg)

The body heat from hundreds of thousands of people who pass through the Stockholm Central Station each day will be used to heat a new office building nearby, the project leader said Wednesday.

“So many people go through the Central Station … We want to harness some of the warmth they produce to help heat the new building,” Karl Sundholm, of the Swedish state-held property administration company Jernhuset, told AFP.

He said the body heat would warm up water that in turn would be pumped through pipes over to the new office building, which will also house a small hotel and a few shops and is expected to be completed by the beginning of 2010.

Distant star sheds light on the birth of planets (PhysOrg)

Astronomers poring over a young star 180 light years from Earth have found evidence that stellar birth can lead to the formation of a planet only millions of years later, a mere blink on the cosmic timescale.

The mainstream theory is that planets are forged from a disc of gas and dusty debris that is left over from the creation of a star. How long this process takes is a matter of debate, though.

A team led by Johny Setiawan, an Indonesia-born astronomer at the Max Planck Institute in Heidelberg, Germany, found a massive gas giant, between 5.5 and 13.1 times the size of Jupiter, orbiting within the dust disc of a well-studied star called TW Hydrae.

Light from the star suggests that it is between only eight and 10 million years old, which implies that planets can form even before the disc has been dissipated by stellar particles and radiation.

news roundup

I read news from a bunch of different sources each day, including Google News, Reddit, and a whole host of blog feeds. Some items are worth commenting on here, but often I just want to say “hey, read this one” instead of finding something specific to comment on.

So, I’m going to try a new feature here on Global Spin: the News Roundup. Each post is a list of timely articles with excerpts but little or no commentary, perhaps updated over the course of the day. If you find them useful, let me know. If you find them annoying, mention that too.

Doctors refuse to take bitter no-gift medicine (Chicago Tribune)

Whether it be Subway sandwiches for the office staff or reimbursement for continuing education, gifts showered upon doctors by drug- and medical device-makers have become so pervasive that they are a standard part of virtually every U.S. physician’s practice.

Despite self-policing initiatives launched by organized medical groups and the drug and device makers to curb the cozy relationship between physicians and industry, 94 percent “or virtually all” physicians have at least one type of relationship with the drug industry, according to a study scheduled to be published Thursday in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Stephen Hawking set to fly weightless (Houston Chronicle)

For a few seconds on Thursday, astrophysicist Stephen Hawking expects to feel the exhilaration of escaping his paralysis and floating free in zero gravity. The 65-year-old was set Thursday to become the first person with a disability to experience the Zero Gravity Corp. flight.

Canada Announces Greenhouse Gas Targets (Washington Post)

Canada’s Conservative government said Wednesday it will cut greenhouse gas emissions 20 percent by 2020 and ban inefficient incandescent lightbulbs by 2012 as part of a national environmental initiative.

The plan, dubbed “Turning the Corner,” includes various measures to stop the rise of greenhouse gases in three to five years. Once the gases stop rising, the government plans to reduce them by 150 million tons by 2020, or about 20 percent the level of current emissions.