Technology

Tyrannosaurus Rex Was a Slowpoke

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: February 27, 2002   View Article

That well-imagined nightmare in which a bloodthirsty Tyrannosaurus rex is chasing the family car down a lonely road in the red-rock desert as the children scream and the gas gauge hovers on empty and the dinosaur gnashes at the rear bumper is just that: a bad dream. T. rex was a slowpoke.

The most feared and revered of the dinosaurs did not have the leg strength to run very fast, if at all, according to a computer model developed by two experts in the mechanical movements of living creatures.

Satellites Aid Sustainable Land Use in Amazon

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 31, 2001   View Article

Computers and satellites are being successfully harnessed to the problem of biodiversity conservation in the Amazon rain forest.

Scientists believe that at least half of the world’s animal, plant, and insect species reside in the rain forest, an area half the size of the continental United States.

Forty Thousand Children Help Build Space “Disco Ball”

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 3, 2001   View Article

Disco isn’t dead; it’s just gone high-tech—very high tech.

A 200-pound (90-kilogram) satellite covered in 1,500 mirrors hand-polished by schoolchildren around the world was launched into a low orbit at the weekend to measure the effects of solar storms on the density of Earth’s upper atmosphere.

Does Racking in Packs Offer an Unfair Advantage

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 1, 2001   View Article

In cycling, triathlons, and other races, the leader of the pack may not be out ahead in terms of innate talent.

The “bunching” that often occurs in such events gives some racers an advantage that masks their individual ability. As a result, the person who crosses the finish line first isn’t necessarily the most physically and mentally fit competitor in the race.

Brittle Star Found Covered With Optically Advanced “Eyes”

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: August 22, 2001   View Article

In a clever twist of nature, the sea has eyes in its stars.

Scientists have discovered a species of brittle star whose outer skeleton is covered with crystalline lenses that appear to work collectively as an all-seeing eye.

Multimedia Project Invites Discourse on Human Existence

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: May 23, 2001   View Article

Will the Internet change humanity? Why do we make music and art? Does sex have a future? What will tomorrow really be like? Questions such as these lack simple answers, but open discussion of them is vital to understanding the nature of human existence.

At least that’s the theory of Robert Kuhn, an investment banker with a Ph.D. in brain science from the University of California in Los Angeles and a passion to use communications technology for intellectual discourse, not to sell advertising.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach