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Writer Fuel: How Long Does Evolution Take?

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Charles Darwin famously marveled at the “endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful” produced by evolution, and indeed, Earth today teems with an estimated 1 trillion species. But how long did it take those species to evolve? The answer varies widely across lifeforms, “depending on taxa [type of creature] and environmental conditions,” Thomas Smith, a … Read more

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Writer Fuel: Where Are All the Giant Animals?

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Prehistoric giants used to populate the Earth. These behemoths included mighty dinosaurs, airplane-size pterosaurs, massive crocodiles and snakes, and even armadillos the size of cars. But today, there are just a few big animals on our planet. What happened? Why aren’t there many giants left anymore? First of all, there’s plenty of fossil evidence that … Read more

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WRITER FUEL: History of the Web

internet network worldwide web - pixabay

In internet history, credit for the initial concept that developed into the World Wide Web is typically given to Leonard Kleinrock. In 1961, he wrote about ARPANET, the predecessor of the internet, in a paper entitled “Information Flow in Large Communication Nets.” According to the journal Management and Business Review (MBR), Kleinrock, along with other … Read more

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WRITER FUEL: Scientists Find Evidence of Non-Random Mutations

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Genetic changes that crop up in an organism’s DNA may not be completely random, new research suggests. That would upend one of the key assumptions of the theory of evolution. Researchers studying the genetic mutations in a common roadside weed, thale cress (Arabidopsis thaliana), have discovered that the plant can shield the most “essential” genes … Read more

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WRITER FUEL: What’s Hiding In Our Genetic “Dark DNA”?

DNA - Deposit Photos

We’re launching a brand new feature on Liminal Fiction – “Writer Fuel – cool real-world stories that might inspire your little writer heart. Today:  Genetic “dark matter” may drive the emergence of new species, new research finds. These long, repeating stretches of the genome, called satellite DNA, may ultimately prevent incompatible animals from mating by … Read more