July 1, 2014 |
EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. - The fire lit up the predawn sky on July 29, 1989, sizzling electrical wires and leaving behind the charred remains of a small cabin at a Korean Christian retreat. Inside was the body of 20-year-old Ji Yun Lee, a mentally ill woman from New York who had been brought here by her father in a desperate bid for help. As the embers cooled, investigators found what they considered evidence of arson and began looking with suspicion at her father, Han Tak Lee, who spoke little English and seemed unfazed by his daughter's death.
June 9, 2014 |
Just as the Franklin Institute eases into its new 53,000-square-foot, $41 million Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion, which opens Saturday, the science center figures it needs to get out of the building more often. And it is. The 190-year-old institute is opening science high schools in Egypt and Philadelphia, training teachers in science curriculum, and developing programs that turn on young scholars to careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Some of these programs are well-established.
June 6, 2014 |
THE GENERAL feeling, after watching a couple of days of the Eagles' offense at the OTAs, is that the tempo might be even faster than it was last season. Watching them practice, it seems to run the fastest with Nick Foles at quarterback, and then with Matt Barkley, and then with Mark Sanchez - which only makes sense. But Foles can get them from whistle to snap in 15 seconds sometimes, and for a few consecutive plays at a time, 15, 15, 15. It is absurd. Some of it is a mindset. Some of it is superior conditioning, even at this point in the year.
May 5, 2014 |
Jaime Lee admitted to doing a little dance to the ethnic beat pulsating from the Sister Cities Park International Festival as she walked by on Saturday. And the food stands operated by some of the city's finest restaurants at the Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival on Walnut Street did seem mighty tempting. But it was a Temple University physics exhibit at the Philadelphia Science Festival's carnival that had the Burlington Township biology teacher and her 5-year-old daughter, Katie, at dough.
April 26, 2014 |
Among the indignities suffered by pregnant women are the clunky straps belted around the belly to measure contractions and fetal heart rate, tethered by wire to an electronic monitor. What woman would not prefer a soft, stretchy, wireless alternative called the Belly Band? Check it out in a Drexel University lab on Sunday. Or if pregnancy is not your thing, head outside to Smith Playground to shoot off Alka-Seltzer rockets and meet the soap-bubble monster. Still no good?
April 25, 2014 |
THERE'S science and technology in everything we see, touch, breathe, gulp and otherwise enjoy. That's the underlying theme of the fun-filled, not-just-for-nerds Philadelphia Science Festival, back (and to the future) today through May 3. Hitting us all where we "live," more than 100 events are planned in everyday places like parks, restaurants, bars, libraries and museums for the nine days in this fourth annual celebration, presented by Dow Chemical and led by the Franklin Institute.
April 10, 2014 |
'Dear Sophie . . . " The man who is arguably the nation's best-known climate-change scientist was writing to his granddaughter. The letter was about monarch butterflies and a bullfrog, to be followed by others sounding environmental themes. James E. Hansen - "Bopa" to Sophie - wanted to teach her "how science works, how we investigate cause and effect," he said recently. Explaining it to her - in letters he plans to turn into a book called Sophie's Planet - "will help me put the climate story in a language that a broader audience can understand.
April 6, 2014 |
GLASSBORO The fish were fighting themselves. On Friday, 23 Clearview Regional High School students sat distracted in Rowan University assistant professor Matthew Bealor's laboratory in Glassboro as participants in the university's eighth annual Science Day. They were prodding tanks of betta fish on the countertops, some rapping their nets against the glass, others pressing their noses to the sides of the tanks. After lecturing for a few minutes about the aggressive tendencies of male betta fish - which will rip one another to shreds if more than one is kept in the same tank - the professor told the visiting students they were allowed to lower their floating mirrors into the water.
March 27, 2014 |
PHILADELPHIA The students filed into South Philadelphia's Academy at Palumbo auditorium by the dozen Tuesday afternoon, thinking they were in trouble. Minutes later, the room went dark and balloons started streaming down from the second-floor balcony. As a video began playing on a screen in front of them, the auditorium erupted into a sea of cheers. Palumbo students learned Tuesday that they had been chosen as one of five winners of Samsung's nationwide Solve for Tomorrow contest, a competition designed to raise awareness for science, technology, engineering, and math education among public school students.
March 17, 2014 |
PHOENIXVILLE The pilot was explaining how the big Sikorsky S-76 helicopter sitting outside Phoenixville Middle School worked when someone asked why pilots wear flight suits. The chief reason is they are fire retardant, but all those pockets are good for stashing essentials, like lip gloss and nail files, pilot Stacy Sheard said. Most of her colleagues might not have given that answer, as the overwhelming majority of helicopter pilots are men. But at the Chester County Economic Development Council's 14th annual GETT (Girls Exploring Tomorrow's Technology)