Culture

More than five million people die every year from infectious diseases, despite the availability of numerous antibiotics and vaccines. The discovery of penicillin to treat bacterial infections, along with the development of vaccines for previously incurable virus diseases such as polio and smallpox, achieved great reductions in mortality during the mid-20th century.

The world has gone digital in just about everything we do. Almost every iota of information we access these days is stored in some kind of digital form and accessed electronically -- text, charts, images, video, music, you name it. The key questions are: Will your data be there when you need it? And who's going to preserve it?

Homeowners have drawn on their biggest asset, the roof over their heads, not to fund 'champagne moments' but to get through hard times; that's the finding of a preliminary study by Durham University.

Mortgage equity withdrawal is a much more popular and frequent event than previously thought. New figures show that borrowers haven't just used their housing equity to splash out on holidays or cars; struggling households have borrowed against their homes to meet their basic needs like bringing up the kids.

In the last few years there has been a growing number of documented cases in which large earthquakes set off unfelt tremors in earthquake faults hundreds, sometimes even thousands, of miles away.

New research shows that the great Indian Ocean earthquake that struck off the Indonesian island of Sumatra on the day after Christmas in 2004 set off such tremors nearly 9,000 miles away in the San Andreas fault at Parkfield, Calif.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Researchers have captured for the first time a geological event considered key in shaping the Earth's landscape.

An international research team led by Eric Calais, a Purdue University professor of geophysics, was able to measure ground displacements as two tectonic plates in Africa moved apart and molten rock pushed its way toward the surface during the first so-called "dyking event" ever recorded within the planet's continental crust.

A warm-up programme that focuses on improving strength, balance, core stability and muscular awareness cuts injury in female footballers by a third and severe injuries by almost a half, according to research published on bmj.com today.

It's 40 degrees F below zero (with the wind chill) at the South Pole today. Yet a research team from the University of Delaware is taking it all in stride.

The physicists, engineers and technicians from the University of Delaware's Bartol Research Institute are part of an international team working to build the world's largest neutrino telescope in the Antarctic ice, far beneath the continent's snow-covered surface.

Dubbed "IceCube," the telescope will occupy a cubic kilometer of Antarctica when it is completed in 2011, opening super-sensitive new eyes into the heavens.

When faced with a difficult decision, we try to come up with the best choice by carefully considering all of the options, maybe even resorting to lists and lots of sleepless nights. So it may be surprising that recent studies have suggested that the best way to deal with complex decisions is to not think about them at all—that unconscious thought will help us make the best choices.

Presidential scholars have written volumes trying to understand the presidential mind. How can anyone juggle so many complicated decisions? Do those seeking office have a unique approach to decision making? Studies have suggested that power changes not only a person's responsibilities, but also the way they think. Now, a new study in the December issue of Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, indicates that having power may lead people to automatically think in a way that makes complex decision-making easier.

BOULDER--Contrary to earlier projections, few developing countries will be able to afford more efficient technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the next few decades, new research concludes. The study, by researchers at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the University of Colorado, warns that continuing economic and technological disparities will make it more difficult than anticipated to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and it underscores the challenges that poorer nations face in trying to adapt to global warming.