Science Frontiers
The Unusual & Unexplained

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About Science Frontiers

Science Frontiers is the bimonthly newsletter providing digests of reports that describe scientific anomalies; that is, those observations and facts that challenge prevailing scientific paradigms. Over 2000 Science Frontiers digests have been published since 1976.

These 2,000+ digests represent only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The Sourcebook Project, which publishes Science Frontiers, also publishes the Catalog of Anomalies, which delves far more deeply into anomalistics and now extends to sixteen volumes, and covers dozens of disciplines.

Over 14,000 volumes of science journals, including all issues of Nature and Science have been examined for reports on anomalies. In this context, the newsletter Science Frontiers is the appetizer and the Catalog of Anomalies is the main course.


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Compilations of back issues can be found in Science Frontiers: The Book, and original and more detailed reports in the The Sourcebook Project series of books.


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... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 129: MAY-JUN 2000 Issue Contents Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues This Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects The Sound of Shapes The ability of some humans to determine the pitch of a musical note in the absence of a reference note (" perfect pitch") has been a favorite topic in Science Frontiers (SF #99 , #102 , and #111 ). It now seems that the human ear-brain combination can also discern the shapes and dimensions of thin, vibrating plates by the sound they make. In one type of experiment, conducted by A.J . Kunkler-Peck (Brandeis University) and M.T . Turvey (University of Connecticut), subjects gave surprisingly accurate estimates of the heights and widths of ... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 129: MAY-JUN 2000 Issue Contents Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues This Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects The Sound of Shapes The ability of some humans to determine the pitch of a musical note in the absence of a reference note (" perfect pitch") has been a favorite topic in Science Frontiers (SF #99 , #102 , and #111 ). It now seems that the human ear-brain combination can also discern the shapes and dimensions of thin, vibrating plates by the sound they make. In one type of experiment, conducted by A.J . Kunkler-Peck (Brandeis University) and M.T . Turvey (University of Connecticut), subjects gave surprisingly accurate estimates of the heights and widths of ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 79  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf129/sf129p14.htm
... s back burner by the demands of adulthood. It is a common observation that the young assimilate foreign languages more readily than adults. A less-well-known talent, eidetic imagery (the ability to recall images with photographic precision), is found in some children, but it also usually fades with age. Now, we learn that 8-month-old babies are apparently blessed with perfect pitch, a capability they, too, generally lose as they age. (Hall, Carl T.; "Learning by Infants Isn't Just Baby Talk," The Brain, February 28, 2001. Cr. J. Cieciel.) Removal of mental blocks. Sometimes the barriers that eclipse our innate talents are removed by mental disease. The surprising enhancing effect of dementia on ... "low-level" talents was mentioned in SF#133. The same mental barriers also seem to be removed when transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is applied to that part of the brain that seems to bedamaged in idiot savants. This is suggested by experiments in Australia by R. Young and M. Ridding. Applying TMS to the appropriate portion of the brains of normal, adult volunteers, they found that, indeed, their "low-level" calendar-calculating skills improved as did their abilities to copy pictures from memory (as in eidetic imagery?), (Nowak, Rachel; "Realise Your Potential," New Scientist, p. 7, March 17, 2001.) From Science Frontiers #136, JUL-AUG 2001 . 2001 William R. Corliss ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 27  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf136/sf136p13.htm
... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 34: Jul-Aug 1984 Issue Contents Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues This Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects A Note On Perfect Pitch An individual with perfect pitch can identify a tone without hearing a second tone for comparison. It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that such individuals possess a set of frequency standards somewhere in their permanent memories. The less fortunate of us do not have the genes that lead to the construction of these cerebral frequency standards. (Anonymous; "A Note on Perfect Pitch," Scientific American, 250:82, June 1984.) Comment. Question 1. Does perfect pitch have any survival value that would stimulate its evolution? Question 2. How are these frequency standards coded on the genes? From Science Frontiers ... 34, JUL-AUG 1984 . 1984-2000 William R. Corliss ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 213  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf034/sf034p11.htm
... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 111: May-Jun 1997 Issue Contents Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues This Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects Is perfect pitch favored by natural selection?People with perfect pitch can identify, play, and/or sing a particular musical note without first hearing a reference note. (SF#99 and SF#102) Even if a string of notes is played randomly, they can instantaneously name them. Although musical training while young fosters perfect pitch, the talent also runs in families. A study of 500 musicians, with and without perfect pitch, by N. Freimer at the University of California, revealed that half of those claiming perfect pitch knew family members of like talent. Only 5% of those without perfect pitch made this claim ... (Ref. 1) At the North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, NY, P.K . Gregersen and M. de Andrade were able to locate 126 perfect-pitchers. In this select group, 5.5 % had parents with perfect pitch, and 26% had siblings thus gifted. Among musicians lacking perfect pitch, the figures were 1.1 % and 1.3 %, respectively. (Ref. 2) An unexpected (to us, anyway) correlation of perfect pitch and synethesia (SF#68) was made by Freimer's group. Some perfect-pitchers swear they can "see" musical notes, and even "smell" and "taste" them! (Ref. 1) References Ref. 1. Day, Michael; " ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 582  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf111/sf111p07.htm
... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 111: May-Jun 1997 Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues Last Issue Next Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects Contents Archaeology Ancient entertainments Tobacco and cocaine in ancient egypt An anasazi ley line? Astronomy Extraterrestrial handedness Biology Circaseptennial rhythm in ear growth Life on different scales Chromosome choreograph Is perfect pitch favored by natural selection? Carnot creatures Geology Methane burps and gas-hydrate reservoirs Why some sands sing, squeak, and boom Geophysics White streak from a tv set Exotic seismic signals Psychology Malleable memories Math & Physics Levitation and levity! Something strange is going on! ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 30  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf111/index.htm
... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 102: Nov-Dec 1995 Issue Contents Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues This Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects Perfect pitch and sundry syndromes Writing in response to a report in Science by G. Schlaug concerning the brain asymmetry observed in musicians with perfect or absolute pitch* (SF#99), O. Sacks expands the domain of the phenomenon to include other human talents. Sacks says that perfect pitch, though common in musicians, occurs only in about 1 of every 10,000 people. Among the autistic, however, the incidence rises to perhaps 1 in 20. He next moves on to "savants;" that is, individuals with exceptional mathematic, mechanical, musical, and artistic talents, but with serious deficiencies in other human ... . Calculating prodigies and other "idiot savants" immediately come to mind here. Sachs claims that perfect pitch is is even more common among the savants. In fact, all muscial savants seem to have it. Perfect pitch is also common among those with Williams syndrome, which he defines as: "a -- syndrome which predisposes to hyperacusis and exceptional development of auditory, musical, and verbal skills, combined with striking visual and conceptual deficits." (Sacks, Oliver; "Musical Ability," Science, 268:621, 1995.) * A person with perfect pitch can identify a tone without needing a second tone for comparison. SF#99 = Science Frontiers #99. From Science Frontiers #102 Nov-Dec 1995 . 1995-2000 William R. Corliss ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 331  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf102/sf102b07.htm
... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 99: May-Jun 1995 Issue Contents Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues This Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects Curious Brain Asymmetries Perfect pitchers vs. everyone else. An individual possessing perfect pitch can identify any musical note without comparing it to a reference note. It is said to be a uniquely human talent. (But how can we know?) Language, too, is thought to be be a gift accorded only to humans. Is there a biological connection between these "unique" capabilities? Since language is primarily a left-brain function, it is logical to see if the secret of perfect pitch resides in that half of the brain, too. This is just what a group of researchers headed by G. Schlaug did with the ... of magnetic resonance imaging. They compared the planum temporale regions in the brains of 30 musicians (11 with perfect pitch, 19 without) and 30 non-musicians -- all matched for sex and age. The left planum temporale region was larger than the right for both musicians and non-musicians, but in the musicians the asymmetry was twice as great. Furthermore, the musicians blessed with perfect pitch were the most asymmetric of all in this respect. (Schlaug, Gottfried, et al; "In Vivo Evidence of Structural Brain Asymmetry in Musicians," Science, 267: 699, 1995. Nowak, Rachel; "Brain Center Linked to Perfect Pitch," Science, 267:616, 1995) Comment. Perfect pitch is nice to have, but why should it have ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 185  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf099/sf099b06.htm
... Science Frontiers ONLINE No. 102: Nov-Dec 1995 Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues Last Issue Next Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects Contents Archaeology ANCIENT ACOUSTICAL ENGINEERING THE CANDELABRA OF THE ANDES Astronomy HUGE FIREBALL EXPLOSION IN 1994 2,000,000,000 BC: THE EPOCH OF QUASARS Biology TWO POLITICALLY INCORRECT BIOCHEMICAL ANOMALIES FROM DUST UNTO ABYSSAL MUD PERFECT PITCH AND SUNDRY SYNDROMES KING CRAB CONGREGATIONS THE BIRDS Geology WARM LAKE FOUND UNDER ANTARCTIC ICE SHEET REMNANTS OF TUNGUSKA "WEIRD ICICLES" IN A REFRIGERATOR Geophysics A TUNGUSKA-LIKE BLAST IN BRAZIL IN 1930 STYTHE? ICE "METEORITES" FALL LONG-LIVED BUBBLE IN THE ATMOSPHERE Psychology UNCONVENTIONAL WATER DETECTION FUNGAL PHANTASMS Mathematics 1, 089, 533, 431, 247, 059, 310, 875, 780, 378, 922, ... , 447, 308, 967, 213, 141, 717, 486, 151 Physics SOUR GRAPES! ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 27  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf102/index.htm
... Other pages Home Page Science Frontiers Online All Issues Last Issue Next Issue Sourcebook Project Sourcebook Subjects Contents Archaeology Ancient Wisconsin Astronomers The Guadeloupe Skeleton Revisited Pouring A Pyramid A Demurrer From the Epigraphic Society Ancient Old-world Lamps Turn Up in New England Astronomy Does String Hold the Universe Together? The Big Bang As An Illusion A Gathering of Quasars Biology Our Aquatic Phase! Dna even more promiscuous A Note on Perfect Pitch Sunspots and Disease Are Parasites Really the Masters? Geology The Carbon Problem Behind Magnetic Flip-flops Geophysics Aggressive Ball Lightning Low-level Aurora? The Marfa Lights Psychology The Mind's Control of Bodily Processes Hostage Hallucinations Techno-jinx Unclassified Strange Object in the Sky ...
Terms matched: 2  -  Score: 30  -  15 May 2017  -  URL: /sf034/index.htm

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