THE reader is aware that two conflicting conceptions are held in regard to the nature of life, namely, a vitalistic and a mechanistic. The vitalists deny the possibility of a complete explanation of life in terms of physics and chemistry.
1. Introductory.—Some intimate students of Chinese literature and life, notably Dr. W. A. P. Martin, claim that in many cases Chinese philosophy has anticipated the doctrines of modern science. The same may be said of the ancient Greek thinkers, whose speculations have had a direct and large influence in the development of modern thought, such as the Chinese philosophers have not had.
THE kingdom of Norway occupies about one third of the Scandinayian peninsula, and covers approximately 100,000 square miles of territory. From Vardö, its most northern point, to Lindesnäs on the extreme southern coast is 1,100 miles, 400 miles of this line being north of the Arctic circle.
THE DUTIES TO THE PUBLIC OF RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS IN PURE SCIENCE
PROFESSOR WM. E. RITTER
THOSE most familiar with the Marine Biological Station of San Diego must have recognized that while up to the present moment it has devoted itself almost exclusively to research, an undoubted tendency has been manifested to depart from the strait and narrow way.
A COLLEGE—MATE recently indulged in wholesale denunciation of present conditions in American colleges; classes have grown so large that teaching is done mostly by instructors or assistant professors and students are drilled no longer by men of mature intellect; the intimacy between professors and students, which was the glory of the old college, has disappeared and with it has disappeared also the fatherly interest formerly shown by professors; the output of colleges is inferior in quality; there is no hope of improvement except in return to the small college of our youth.
MILK and various dairy products have been used by the human race for ages. There is evidence to show that at least 50,000 years have elapsed, probably a much longer period, since man began to use cow’s milk for his own purposes. Savages who have no historical records consume milk—sweet, sour and fermented—to a large extent and have made use of the preservative properties of sour milk for keeping meat from putrefaction.
IT is customary to classify lightning discharges into at least two classes. This classification is based on the appearance of the flash. One kind of lightning is called forked lightning and the other sheet lightning. There has been some discussion concerning sheet lightning, it being claimed by some that it is merely an illumination due to a discharge which is hidden from view.
ONCE every three weeks a 6,000-ton steamer leaves San Francisco for Sydney. You sail with it six days from gray and cold water to warm and blue, and touch at Honolulu. They let you off for tiffin with poi “cocktails” in a hotel hanging over the sliding surf on wondrous Waikiki.
NOT long ago I spoke to a company of physicians and lawyers on inheritance of certain types of imbecility, and exhibited some charts that showed that imbecility in a child is due to defects in the germ-plasm of both his parents. At the end of my remarks the chairman pointed out that the facts presented merely deferred the origin of feeble-mindedness a generation or two and did not touch on its true cause.
THE account of the Paris Academy of Sciences, one of the five organizations which together form the French Institute, is found in its Mémoires, and in the history of the academy published in 1733 of which the portion written by du Hamel, the first secretary, was in Latin and covered the years from 1666 to 1679.
THE CONVOCATION WEEK MEETINGS OF SCIENTIFIC SOCIETIES
THE UNITED STATES NATIONAL MUSEUM
JOSEPH DALTON HOOKER
THE sixty-third meeting of the American Association for the Advencement of Science will be held in Washington from December 27 to 30. This is the tenth of the annual convocation week meetings, the first of which was in Washington in 1901—2.