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ENTERTAINMENT
November 8, 2014 | BY GARY THOMPSON, Daily News Staff Writer thompsg@phillynews.com, 215-854-5992
"BIG HERO 6" celebrates the virtues of intelligence in a way that's actually fun. This new Disney-Marvel cartoon follows a bright, budding engineer named Hiro (voice of Ryan Potter) whose robot building skills earn him early admission to a science academy, where his brother and pals are building cool things. Hiro earns admission to the school based on his amazing innovation-caplet-sized minirobots that combine to form different shapes, at the whim of the controller with the right headset.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 2, 2014 | By Steven Rea, Inquirer Columnist
Juilliard-trained. Schooled in Shakespeare, Strindberg, Oscar Wilde. Dedicated to her art, and to the idea of art. But in Interstellar , the widescreen sci-fi epic from Christopher Nolan, opening Friday, Jessica Chastain plays a scientist with a head full of equations, and questions, about time, relativity, quantum mechanics. She's an astrophysicist. A stretch, right? "Actually, I am an astrophysicist," insists the twice Oscar-nominated actress, on the phone from Los Angeles the other day. "I've been paying the bills through acting.
NEWS
November 2, 2014 | By Kathy Boccella, Inquirer Staff Writer
Sarah Redmile asked another seventh grader to pass her a white gummy bear Saturday, but this wasn't an extended Halloween celebration. The candy treats didn't even pass through their lips. The girls just wanted to see what would happen when they shone red and green lasers at different-colored gummy bears. The fun experiment was part of a daylong, girls-only science event at West Chester University that took direct aim at a vexing problem: Even in an era when more women are attending college than men, there is still a shortage of females working in the fastest-growing fields of science, technology, engineering, and math.
BUSINESS
October 22, 2014 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Peter Thiel - a founder of online-payments giant PayPal , the first investor in Facebook , and deal partner of Tesla Motors boss Elon Musk - disrupts and provokes. He pays smart tech kids to drop out of blue-chip colleges like Stanford (where Thiel went) and MIT. And he praises monopoly as the righteous goal of every thinking businessperson. Germany-born Thiel, 47, gave the opening talk Monday at this week's Forbes Under 30 Summit , addressing 1,000 dark-clad young people at the Convention Center, only a few of whom raised hands when he asked if they'd read his book, Zero to One . Business isn't science, Thiel told the crowd.
BUSINESS
October 18, 2014 | By Diane Mastrull, Inquirer Staff Writer
The University City Science Center, a 51-year-old business incubator in West Philadelphia, has received a $1 million grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration for a new program to help start-ups get to commercialization. Phase 1 Ventures will vet technologies that have moved beyond initial proof-of-concept stage, provide management and other project-development resources, and help arrange financing. It will draw on the participation of a range of experts - in science and technology, academia and industry, as well involve entrepreneurs and venture capitalists.
NEWS
October 9, 2014 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Daniel Dougherty heard the news, he had one question for his lawyers: When do I get out? They couldn't give him an answer. But now, after 14 years in prison for the arson murder of his two young sons - a crime he swears he did not commit - he's to get a new trial. The state Supreme Court denied a commonwealth appeal and let stand a lower court's order for a retrial. "We're looking forward to the day when we pick him up at the gates and bring him home," defense lawyer Shannon Farmer said.
NEWS
September 27, 2014 | By Vernon Clark, Inquirer Staff Writer
With exotic science equipment in tow, University of Pennsylvania physics professor Larry Gladney gave Philadelphia high school students an eye-popping demonstration of the interactions among sound, light, and energy, but the key message was: "Don't give up. " "The only thing that succeeds is persistence," said Gladney, who conducted experiments before 120 students Wednesday at the High School for the Creative and Performing Arts as part of program...
NEWS
September 23, 2014 | By Kelly Flynn, Inquirer Staff Writer
Suproteem Sarkar has coauthored two scientific papers on cancer treatments, been a presenter at an international nanoscience conference, and won accolades as a pianist. But perhaps the most notable entry on his resumé is the birth date - Sarkar is 17, just entering his senior year at Conestoga High School in Berwyn, Chester County. "He's definitely a highflier here," said Conestoga principal Amy Meisinger. "He's on the fast track for something. " Family members say his precocity was evident almost from the beginning.
BUSINESS
September 10, 2014 | By Diane Mastrull, Inquirer Staff Writer
The list is long of the perfect accompaniments to beer: hot dogs, pizza, peanuts, and pretzels, to name just a few. Most definitely not on that list: pediococcus and lactobacillus. Consider them beer buzzkills. These are types of bacteria that often hitch a ride into breweries aboard grain. If they make their way into the beer itself, they can spoil taste by producing lactic acid, a chemical compound most commonly associated with sore muscles after exertion and first refined in 1780 from sour milk.
NEWS
August 18, 2014 | By Michaelle Bond, Inquirer Staff Writer
Under the rapt stares of about 100 children and a statue of Benjamin Franklin, a staff member at the Franklin Institute poured liquid nitrogen into a bucket of water. A cloud mushroomed out over the sides and raced toward the youngsters. "Wow!" a chorus of surprised and delighted children squealed, reaching out to touch the indoor cloud. A few hundred more children scurried through the institute's famous heart and new brain exhibits Saturday, when the museum opened to more than 1,400 people free of charge.
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