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Analysis and Comment (88)

Opioid addicts now being armed with overdose antidote. Gretchen Ertl/Reuters

Explainer: naloxone, the antidote to opioid overdose

Many first responders' – even some university police officers – are carrying a new tool in their first-aid kits. It’s naloxone, the opioid overdose antidote drug, and today it’s more widely available than…

VIDEO: Michelle Grattan on Jacqui Lambie

University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor Stephen Parker and Michelle Grattan discuss the week in politics including the G20, Russian warships in international waters near Australia, and the tension between…

VIDEO: Michelle Grattan on Ebola

University of Canberra Professorial Fellow Michelle Grattan and Deupty Vice-Chancellor Frances Shannon discuss the week in politics including the Ebola outbreak, the Prime Minister’s comments regarding…
Bitcoin is gaining popularity with retailers, but is it money? Alistair/Flickr

In Conversation with Bitcoin expert and NYU Professor David Yermack

Professor David Yermack of the Stern School of Business at New York University is used to being heckled when he gives talks about Bitcoin. After all, most of his work has involved pointing out all of the…
Don’t fear losing that ball, the waves will bring them back.

Tractor beam generates waves that bring back floating objects

You would normally expect objects that float in water to move in the same direction as waves. But now we can force floating objects to move in the opposite direction. This unexpected effect nicknamed a…

VIDEO: Michelle Grattan on metadata

University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor Stephen Parker and Professorial Fellow Michelle Grattan discuss the week in politics including Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, the mandatory metadata retention…

VIDEO: The future of wearable technologies

Wearable technologies currently exist in two spaces – as conceptual pieces by artists and designers, and as engineering-driven wearable products that are taken to market. But, as Danielle Wilde explains…
The uses for Bitcoin are in their infancy and show signs of the “terrible twos” syndrome. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

Exploring the nascent future of Bitcoin (VIDEO)

In terms of a life-cycle of technology, it is easy to see Bitcoin as being at the same developmental stage as babies going through the “terrible twos”. All of its technological possibility lies ahead…

VIDEO: Why older adults love online dating

Older adults are the fastest-growing demographic on online dating websites, with those aged 50-plus making up 22% of members on Australia’s leading internet dating site. In this episode of TCTV, Sue Malta…
Spain’s revitalisation of ‘beautiful football’ in recent years has been extremely successful. How have football tactics evolved over the years? EPA/Zurab Kurtsikidze

Tactics at the World Cup: a battle between aesthetics and results

The football World Cup may be yet to kick off, but there have already been innumerable discussions on the various playing styles that each country will adopt. Will they play a 4-4-2, a 4-2-3-1, or a straight…
Australia first qualified for the World Cup in 1974, when a group of part-timers under captain Peter Wilson (far right) went to West Germany. Anton Cernak

Qualifying is never easy: Australia’s World Cup history

Australia will soon begin its fourth football World Cup finals campaign – the third successive tournament it has qualified for – with group stage matches against Chile, the Netherlands and Spain. While…

VIDEO: Are raw foods good for you?

There are claims that cooking destroys nutrients and enzymes found in food, and that eating raw, uncooked foods must be better for you. But it’s not that simple and, as Tim Crowe explains, a pure raw-food…

VIDEO: How the weather affects our mood

We often use the weather as a metaphor for how we’re feeling: gloomy, sunny or under a cloud. But how does it actually affect us? In this episode of TCTV, Nick Haslam describes the influence of sunny skies…
If only it didn’t stink. Don Bradshaw and NTV

What do you do with a whale that won’t explode?

The residents of Trout River in Newfoundland, Canada have a stinking whale of a problem. What to do with the 81-feet-carcass of Balaenoptera musculus on their shore? While such an occurrence is not uncommon…

VIDEO: How laser tattoo removal works

Professor Rodney Sinclair explains how advances in laser tattoo removal technology have enabled the relatively safe and easy removal of tattoos. But it is a medical procedure, and as laser dermatologist…
Hands on the wall still.

VIDEO: Were the first artists women?

Welcome to TCTV, a new stream of video content offering ideas and insights from the sharpest academic minds. In this first episode Janine Burke explains research by archaeologist Dean Snow suggesting that…
If Arthur Sinodinos couldn’t be across key facts about a company of which he became chairman, how can he and the government credibly argue that someone with no expertise should be their own watchdog? AAP/Daniel Munoz

Grattan on Friday: While Sinodinos is off at ICAC, someone should have a look at his financial advice legislation

Interviewed recently about the government’s plan to roll back key consumer protections in Labor’s financial advice legislation, Arthur Sinodinos said his advice to consumers was to “get more informed…
Tony Abbott is trying to switch the focus from a Qantas debt guarantee to the repeal of the carbon tax. AAP/Alan Porritt

Grattan on Friday: Qantas not such a special case in Abbott’s eyes

Hardly a week goes by, it seems, when there is not some fresh announcement of job shedding. Qantas’s loss of 5000 is the latest blow. But amid the gloom on Thursday, Tony Abbott optimistically reaffirmed…
Some psychological theories can help us understand why some people stick with rough relationships and try to ride out the storm. Sean Davis

All you need is love: the psychology of romance

Thousands of couples will celebrate a day of romance this week, while many single people will hope for their own one. But what makes a relationship last? And what makes one couple crumble while another…
Generation War provoked fierce debate and protests with sympathetic portrayals of German soldiers and depictions of Poles as anti-Semitic. SBS/ZDF

Generation War re-ignites battle over a nation’s ‘true’ history

Polish reactions to the German TV series Generation War, which has just screened in Australia, confirm that the history of World War Two remains highly contentious. The resulting public debate tested Polish-German…
Simply standing in front of a class and telling children how we are used to doing things ‘just won’t work’, according to leading American education expert Linda Darling-Hammond. AAP/Dan Peled

In Conversation: Maxine McKew and Linda Darling-Hammond

Watch the video of Maxine McKew interviewing Stanford professor Linda Darling-Hammond below. Australian schoolkids are scoring higher than their US counterparts in maths, science and literacy, but a visiting…
From tree to biofuel in few steps. University of Wisconsin-Madison

Green combination helps turn wood into biofuels

Turning wood and agricultural waste into biofuels is one step closer to being a truly green process, according to a recently published study in the journal Science. James Dumesic of the University of Wisconsin-Madison…
How long can you stay there depends on practice and physics. elisfanclub

Moon’s gravity alone cannot create the world’s largest tides

“Tide goes in, tide goes out…you can’t explain that.” So claimed US talkshow anchor Bill O’Reilly, in a baffling attempt to discredit atheism which became something of a YouTube sensation. I have been…
Following the leader has its benefits. Markus Unsöld

Doing maths on the fly, birds form V for efficiency

Across the globe, hundreds of species of birds can be seen flying in V-formations. We have long suspected that these formation might help birds fly with less effort. Yet the precise mechanics have remained…
Manners please: Eating eating fish with straw? PLOS ONE

The turtle that ate with a straw

During the Mesozoic Era, between 252m and 66m years ago, the seas were ruled by a vast and intriguing array of reptiles. The most common ones were crocodiles (adapted to swimming in oceans), plesiosaurs…
Tony Abbott has tried to ride out the pressure from Indonesia with repeated references to his commitment to the relationship. AAP/Daniel Munoz

Grattan on Friday: Abbott will need to make those words good

The most extraordinary intervention in a disastrous week for Australian-Indonesian relations came out of the blue. Who could have anticipated the provocative tweeting by Liberal party pollster Mark Textor…
Dr Kiran Martin (centre) has been working with New Delhi’s slum dwellers for 25 years. Asha Health & Development Society Photo Archives

In Conversation with Asha founder Dr Kiran Martin

Watch the video of public health professor Rob Moodie interviewing Dr Kiran Martin below. Kiran Martin is the founder of Asha, a community health and development society that works with over 500,000 people…
Only physics can burn a hole through the sky. European Southern Observatory (ESO)

Beyond the Higgs boson: five reasons physics is still interesting

Would physics be “far more interesting” if the Higgs boson had not been found? Stephen Hawking thinks so. He made this bold claim, possibly with his tongue slightly in his cheek, at the opening of a new…
Five-a-day please. blacktigersdream

Are crocodiles secret fruit-lovers?

Seed dispersal by animals is important for plants to help them occupy new areas of land. Usually bugs, birds, or intrepid kittens do that job. Now we can add crocodiles to that list. A new study reviewed…
Hairworm target. haquintero

The parasite a cricket’s nightmares are made of

The hairworm is a long, thread-like parasite that sits bundled up inside the body of its host. It grows so large that it takes up most of the room inside the host’s body, waiting for the right moment to…
A photo of a balloon, mid-burst, can be achieved by amateur photographers. Brent Schneeman

A snapshot of high-speed photography (and how to do it)

High-speed photography in still images and cinema seems to be the latest rage. And while modern technology has made much of the equipment easily accessible, the basic techniques have been used since the…
With the rise of “SuperPACs”, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has a fundraising advantage over President Barack Obama. EPA/CJ Gunther

Explainer: what is a Super PAC?

David Weisbrot of the University of Sydney explains where the money comes from with the rise of Super PACs in the US presidential elections, in collaboration with SBS Online.
US President Barack Obama with Prime Minister Julia Gillard on his first trip to Australia in November last year. AAP/Alan Porritt

Explainer: foreign relations and the US elections

Brendan O'Connor from the University of Sydney discusses the foreign policy implications for Australia, Iran and China ahead of the US presidential elections, produced in collaboration with SBS Online…
President Obama addresses the American Latino Heritage Forum in Washington last year. EPA/Olivier Douliery

Explainer: the Latino vote in the US

In the first of The Conversation’s video explainer series - produced in collaboration with SBS Online - Dr David Smith from the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney discusses the importance…
Will the London Olympics lead to increased participation in grassroots sport? BELAMBRA CLUBS

The sports legacy of the Olympic Games

While competition at the London Olympics only runs for 19 days, the Games are likely to have an impact far beyond this brief period of time. Or so we’re told. In this video Stephen Frawley discusses the…
Margins may get smaller, but will they ever disappear? josterpi

VIDEO: pushing at the limits of athletic ability

Will records keep tumbling as athletes get fitter and technology develops? Or is there a limit to human performance? Kate Murphy investigates. Further viewing: VIDEO: doping, drug testing and the Olympics…
A zero-tolerance approach to doping? “That is pure fantasy …”

VIDEO: doping, drug testing and the Olympics

Bob Stewart of Victoria University discusses doping, cheating and suggestions that drug testing at London 2012 is the most comprehensive we’ve ever seen at an Olympic Games. Further viewing: VIDEO: why…
Goodnight, sleep tight? Not if these critters have anything to do with it. Lynn Friedman

VIDEO: bed bugs at London 2012

In a co-production between SBS World News Australia and The Conversation, University of Sydney’s Cameron Webb explains why bed bugs will almost certainly bite at the London Olympics. It’s creepy. Enjoy…

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