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New Science Smorgasbord: Viruses, Stars, Brains, & Shapes - Science Talk

Viruses: Ancestors or Aliens? – Lauren Popov, Stanford
Biologists can’t agree if viruses are truly “living” entities. So if viruses aren’t alive, then how did they evolve and where did they come from? Together we will explore the mainstream hypotheses about the origins of viruses and marvel at the diversity of the ever-expanding viral family tree.

Star Formation Through Radio Eyes – Chat Hull, UC Berkeley
How do stars form? And how do magnetic fields affect the star formation process? I focus on both of those questions in my research, which involves using radio telescopes to observe the dense blobs of dust and gas where stars like our sun are just beginning to form.

How to Grow a Primate Brain, and Why You Should – Drew Halley, UC Berkeley
Primate brains (including yours) have some remarkable differences from those of other mammalian species. This talk will look at what’s different about primate brains, how development produces these differences, and why evolution selected them.

What Is The Best Shape? – Otis Chodosh, Stanford
... The best SHAPE?! A question for the ages! What do geometers and physicists mean by “best”? And which shape is the winner?

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Presented by Wonderfest Science Envoys

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  • Werner H.

    Re: Viruses. Is it necessary to label something digitally as either living or non-living? Those were convenient labels when we didn't have the tools to distinguish shades of "livingness", but living things don't have sole claim to some of their common characteristics, such as self-replication.

    December 6, 2013

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