Archivo de ‘Science’

Colciencias director dismissed

Martes, julio 8th, 2014

The controversy sparked by a 125,000-million peso reduction in the Colciencias budget for 2015 precipitated the dismissal of the entity’s director, Paula Arias. Arias explained that she has a hard time understanding how National Planning could choose to go from 414,000 million to 289,000 million for next year, which would leave the entity’s hand’s tied as it would be unable to operate.

“In an effort to understand the magnitude of this budget cut, the doctorate scholarships would disappear, we wouldn’t have the resources.”

The losers, she explained, will be science, research and the nation’s development because 50,000 million were already cut in 2013. “We are the only country in Latin America with decreasing investment in science and technology.”

World awaits transit of Venus

Lunes, junio 4th, 2012

The passing of Venus across the face of the Sun, a transit, is not an everyday occurrence. Today, as long as the clouds allow it, Colombians will be able to witness one of these rare events, the final one for this century, as the next one will not take place until 2117. In Colombia, the transit should start at approximately 5:09 p.m.

With telescopes raring to go, scientists will use this as a chance to examine the planet’s atmosphere and gather clues that may lead to the discovery of new extra-solar planets.

Transits of Venus are so rare because the planet’s orbit is tilted relative to the Earth’s; the two planets line up with the sun only four times every 243 years.

New science law approved

Lunes, diciembre 22nd, 2008


The new Science, Technology and Innovation Law, approved last week in Congress, moved to the hands of the President for approval and will be fully in effect in six months. The law implies the transformation of Colciencias into an administrative department with more resources and higher hierarchy level.

Energy, a gift from the sea

Lunes, agosto 25th, 2008


To anyone unfamiliar with the area or the topic, it would seem like an odd place to build anything, let alone a structure with walls on only two sides and filled with logs. When you know more about it though, you realize it’s a structure built to take advantage of what the ocean hands over to the population of Nueva Pampa. 

Rivers do quite a bit of damage to the cleanliness of beaches, especially the Atrato River, because the gulf currents distribute residue received from the river onto the beaches. In particular, tree trunks are left scattered all over the beaches in Nueva Pampa,a community 15 minutes from Necoclí.

Researchers studied the biomass of those logs, and determined the wood can be used to generate gas, which could provide first-time energy for 45 homes in the region. The plant started operating this weekend, using technology from India. The community collects and transports the logs to get processed.


Apparently fish can lie too

Lunes, agosto 11th, 2008


When it comes to male mollies (Poecilia Mexicana), they’re anything but dumb. These fish have surprised scientists by showing that, when competition is nearby, they will actually court a female different from the one they’re interested in so that other males leave the one they’re truly after alone.

In a report for Current Biology, Martin Plath and his colleagues determined that this fish has a simple reason for its behavior: other males will copy the decision they make.  “It’s very interesting that a fish could be capable of such sophisticated conduct”, said Plath who is a scientist at the University of Potsdam in Germany and Oklahoma in the United States. We now see traits we thought were exclusive to humans in small animals. This also proves that you don’t need the use of a conscience to engage in deceitful behavior.  


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