News Clips for Jan. 11-16, 2020

Taal volcano in the Philippines is a warning about global volcano hazards

Scientists are on high alert as they monitor the Taal volcano, which began erupting Sunday on the Philippine island of Luzon. The volcano is in a heavily populated area just 45 miles from the megacity of Manila and is capable of exploding with devastating effects.

Made Entirely From Cells, These Adorable 'Xenobots' Are Practically Alive

With the help of a supercomputer, scientists have built tiny machines comprised entirely made of biological materials. Able to survive for days and even weeks, these xenobots could eventually be used to deliver drugs inside the body and to clean up the environment.

Scientists Assemble Frog Stem Cells Into First ‘Living Machines’

In Michael Levin’s laboratory at Tufts University, cells can expect to find themselves in unusual company. Here, the precursors of frog skin sidle up to cells that, in another life, might have helped an amphibian’s heart beat. They’re perfect strangers: biological entities that, up until this point, had no business being together. And yet, Levin and his colleagues have found that skin cells and heart cells can be coaxed into coalescing. Placed side by side, they will self-organize into intricate, three-dimensional mosaics of frog cells that aren’t actually frogs.

University Of Utah Hires New Police Chief To Oversee Campus

The University of Utah has hired a new police chief to run the university's Department of Public Safety. KSL-TV reports Rodney Chatman was named chief of police Thursday and is expected to begin his position in Salt Lake City Feb. 17. University officials say Chatman currently runs the campus police department at the University of Dayton in Ohio. Chatman succeeds former chief Dale Brophy, who retired in October after serving in the role since 2015. The university has faced criticism for the state of student safety after the October 2018 death of student Lauren McCluskey, who was shot on campus.

How can people improve their credit scores using a credit card for bad credit?

Improving one’s credit score will require the use of a credit card. It may seem counterintuitive, but that’s how it’s done. Ten percent of your credit score is based on types of credit, which are having credit cards and installment loans. Your financial institution, bank or credit union, is the best place to start your search for a credit card. With a bad credit history, the credit limit will be low (perhaps $500 to $1000) and the interest rate high (22% to 25%) but this allows you the chance to rebuild your credit history. After proving that you can handle this card, you can request a higher limit and a lower interest rate.

Bills Utah County lawmakers are sponsoring in the 2020 legislative session

The two dozen representatives and senators in districts that cover Utah County have been busy preparing for the 2020 legislative session, which begins on Jan. 27. In total, Utah County’s lawmakers have filed 281 bills or resolutions on topics ranging from affordable housing to industrial hemp production.

One in six vaping lung illnesses linked to legally purchased THC, according to federal data

One-sixth of patients who developed lung injuries after vaping marijuana obtained the product from legal dispensaries, a new federal report says, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said reinforced its current recommendations to not use THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products.

Why Utah Republican Mike Lee And Democrat Ben McAdams Switched Sides On Iran

Two members of Utah’s Congressional Delegation — Republican Sen. Mike Lee and Democrat Rep. Ben McAdams — are responding very differently to the Trump administration’s handling of the fatal airstrike against Iran’s top general. They’re both crossing the aisle to vote with the other’s party.

4 reasons gamers and techies will love this year's Silicon Slopes Tech Summit

Techies, gamers, and professionals are taking Salt Lake City by storm this month with The Silicon Slopes Tech Summit. The two-day event, including the Slopes Arcade, kicks off Jan. 30 at the Salt Palace.

Can’t stop making up then breaking up all the time? Blame science

On Good Things Utah today – We now know who is the best of the best on Jeopardy! Ken Jennings walked away with the title and one million dollars on the show Tuesday night. And the University of Utah is part of a study on relationships. The research found that science may be to blame for all of our make ups and break ups. Plus, one woman says maybe our “journey” isn’t to find love, but to find ourselves. We’ll tell you why her post is going viral. And finally, why you should get rid of those “fake friends” once and for all in 2020.

Seven Utah companies join World Trade Center at CES 2020 in Las Vegas

A 2018 report by the University of Utah's Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute found that, compared to other states with similarly sized economies, Utah had the largest tech industry in terms of total employment and wages in the private sector.

Utah governor stops distribution of risqué state-themed condoms, created to raise awareness of HIV

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert has ordered state health officials to stop distributing condoms with suggestive Utah-themed packaging, created with federal funds as part of a new HIV awareness campaign.

Cool Science Radio-Thursday, Jan. 16, 9:06

Lynn Ware Peek and John Wells speak first with Neuropsychologist Parth Ghandi, Phd. He will preview the inaugural Intermountain Psychedelic Science & Therapy Symposium coming up on January 17 and 18 in Salt Lake City. This conference is for those interested in learning about the new science and therapy models using Psychedelics. The second Cool Science guest is University of Utah vertebrate paleontologist Mark Loewen who will talk about Dino Fest 2020, taking place at the Natural History Museum of Utah on January 25 and 26. Mark specializes in research on Jurassic and Cretaceous dinosaurs and has named eight dinosaurs!

Secondhand Whistleblower Reports are More Valuable, Study Finds

Professors from the University of Utah and George Washington University studied nearly two million internal whistleblower reports submitted to over one thousand publicly traded U.S. companies. The researchers provided descriptive statistics of the reports from the time filed to completion of their review.

Helicopter infrasound shakes historic rock formations

Rainbow Bridge, the largest known rock arch in the world, spans a tributary of Lake Powell in the western US state of Utah. As the main access is via a three-hour boat trip followed by a 1.5 km hike, some visitors opt for a quick helicopter tour to view the spectacular formation. Around 1500 such flights were recorded in 2018.

Utah tax reform attracts opposites to referendum campaign

A conservative Trump nominee and a liberal Salt Lake County councilwoman walk into a grocery store. That sentence has the trappings of a lazy political joke, but the scene also played out Sunday at the City Creek Harmons, where Ronald Mortensen and Shireen Ghorbani volunteered side-by-side encouraging customers to add their names to a referendum that could overturn recent changes to the state’s tax laws.

Women tend to dress more conservatively for this surprising reason

You can dress casually, you can dress for the job you want but did you know you can also dress defensively? A new study explores this concept as researchers from Oklahoma State University found that women often “dress defensively” in order to be judged less harshly by other women they come in contact with regularly.

Large study finds zinc and folic acid supplements don’t treat male infertility, Utah doctors say

AJ and Cindy Maudsley know the struggles of infertility. “It’s just really hard when you want something so bad, and it just doesn’t happen for you,” Cindy Maudsley explained. “It’s just one of the hardest trials I’ve gone through in my life.”

On the trail of tiny tubers This Four Corners potato was a staple of Native American diets

For years, we’ve learned that ancestral Puebloans depended upon corn, beans and squash, nicknamed The Three Sisters, for sustenance. Well, move over sisters. Little brother spud is about to take the stage. With a $225,000 National Science Foundation grant, researchers at the University of Utah hope to prove that a tiny tuber, Solanum jamesii, was an important part of ancient Native diets.

Amy Schumer Revealed She's Undergoing IVF Treatments

Amy Schumer isn't afraid to be vulnerable in her social media posts. Throughout her first pregnancy, the actress and comedian consistently gave fans hilarious, yet thought-provoking insight into what pregnancy and postpartum life can look like for new moms. Not only was Schumer candid about her struggles with hyperemesis gravidarum (an extreme form of morning sickness), she also posted photos of herself in hospital underwear to help normalize postpartum bodies.

The iPhone Of Tomorrow Could Have A GigaPixel Lensless Camera

It’s only been 3 years since Apple introduced dual camera phones with the release of the iPhone 7 — allowing users to capture zoom shots without adding digital grain or the bulk of a mechanical zoom system. Apple’s solution wasn’t elegant: they just cloned the camera and used a different lens. It solved the problem— but it came at a cost.

Fitness Program Aims To Create Community For People In Recovery

Ian Acker went to treatment for substance use five times. He’s been sober for nearly eight years now. Although Acker believes working out and good nutrition aids in recovery, he founded the Salt Lake-based nonprofit Fit to Recover because he believes the opposite of addiction is connection.

Rare salt formations appear along the Great Salt Lake

Rare salt formations have been documented for the first time on the shores of the Great Salt Lake, and they could yield insights about salt structures found on Mars before they disappear for good.

Medicaid expansion improves women’s postpartum care, researchers say

Medicaid expansion improves new moms’ access to care after delivery, especially for those at high risk of postpartum complications, according to a new study.

This Is What Happened When She Thought She Was Being Cute Jumping Into A Frozen Lake

This young woman wanted to make a viral YouTube video with a tremendous jump into the water in the cold of Russia … And she has become famous for her recklessness.

Campaign urges Utah parents to be 'idle free' while waiting for children at school

Another inversion season is upon us, so students are taking action. "For our family, clean air is a matter of life and death," said parent advocate Erika Doty, who has two children who suffer from asthma. Doty is one of many community members encouraging parents to pull over and stop idling during student drop-off to help improve air quality around schools.

Post-legalization teens wait longer to try cannabis

The more legal marijuana becomes, the longer teens are delaying their first use of cannabis. The high point for adolescent use of cannabis was during the “DARE” era, when prohibition was in full swing and the anti-drug propaganda campaign was active in schools through DARE and on TV through Partnership for a Drug Free America (PDFA).

University of Utah’s police chief’s retirement party cost $6K

The University of Utah police department spent $6,000 to throw a retirement party for outgoing Chief Dale Brophy — a celebration that came as he was stepping down and his force was under fire for ignoring concerns reported by student-athlete Lauren McCluskey before she was killed on campus.