News to Note, September 27, 2008

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint

Featured in News to Know

A(nother) tragic school shooting, inventing the walking fish, Neanderthals see food, clever crows, and more!

1. Finland Shaken By Another Violent School Shooting

Finland has been shaken by another violent school shooting, the second in less than a year.

2. Did Fingers and Toes Originate From Fins?

Evolutionary scientists have discovered the origin of fingers and toes: fishlike creatures that swam the seas hundreds of millions of years ago. So what exactly was the science behind the discovery, which was reported in Nature?

3. Remains Suggest Neanderthal Diet Included Dolphins and Seals

Fine dining for our Neanderthal kin may have consisted of some seafood delicacies—both familiar and unfamiliar to modern tongues.

4. Crows May Outsmart Chimpanzees and Dolphins

If there were an animal version of the popular trivia program Jeopardy!, it might pit a chimpanzee against a dolphin against a crow. The surprising thing is, the crow might win!

5. BBC News: “Collider Halted Until Next Year”

Think Europe’s Large Hadron Collider might generate world-devouring black holes? Calm down, it won’t happen until at least next year.

We’re referencing unfounded rumors that the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator that began operations earlier this month, would create tiny black holes that would grow larger and swallow/destroy the earth. For background on the collider and the big-bang and black-hole hype, see A Miniature Big Bang or More Hot Air?

The $9 billion collider had begun operating but was not yet creating the massive particle collisions it was built for. Last Friday, however, the collider ran into problems. Failure of some 100 magnets allowed a substantial amount of liquid helium to leak out of the accelerator tube. The liquid helium helps keep the 17-mile-long (27 km) tube colder than outer space, allowing maximum efficiency.

“[T]his is undoubtedly a psychological blow,” said Robert Aymar, director-general of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), parent to the collider project.

Because the collider was planned to undergo maintenance shutdown for the winter anyway, CERN has decided to go ahead and keep operations offline until next spring. That will give engineers time to (hopefully) understand what caused the magnets to overheat by as much as 212˚F (100˚C).

In other words, physicists will have to wait until next year before “recreating” the big bang (supposedly)!

6. Mollie Hemingway Examines the Christian Stereotype of Irrationality

Mollie Ziegler Hemingway takes a look at stereotype made popular by the media: Christians are irrational, superstitious people, through and through. But does the evidence back that up?

7. US Presidential Candidates Weigh in On Origins Education

The U.S. presidential election pits two evolutionists against one another, it seems, as Nature News reports candidate Barack Obama’s comments on origins education.

Remember, if you see a news story that might merit some attention, let us know about it! And thanks to all of our readers who have submitted great news tips to us. If you didn’t catch last week’s News to Note, why not take a look at it now? See you next week!

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