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Welcome to the “Scientific American Today in Science” update from Hawaii Science Digest.

Top Story:  How to flatten the COVID-19 Curve through marketing.

Views expressed in this science and technology news summary are those of the reporters and correspondents.

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Accessed on 30 March 2020, 2055 UTC.

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March 30, 2020

Dear Reader,

Why do some people believe the response to the coronavirus is an overreaction, while others think it doesn’t go far enough? Our lead story explores the psychology behind this decision-making.

Here’s a preview of what else is featured today:

EPA’s move to weaken pollution enforcement endangers people who are susceptible to the spread of COVID-19 by exacerbating respiratory illnesses, public health experts say.

Quantum computing has the potential to become a staple technology, but a major hurtle remains that will require immense efforts to overcome: decoherence.

And if you’d like to take your mind off current events for a while, consider chipping in on a citizen science project. We share two cases that you can help scientists study.

Important information for our print subscribers

Sunya Bhutta, Senior Editor, Audience Engagement
@sunyaaa
Behavior & Society

To Flatten the COVID-19 Curve, Target the Subconscious

Getting people to comply with social distancing policies is basically an exercise in marketing

By Leslie Zane

BIOLOGY

Antarctic Fish Is a Blood Doping Champion

To remain active in frigid environments, the bald notothen drastically adjusts oxygen in its blood

By Priyanka Runwal
ENVIRONMENT

EPA to Ease Pollution Enforcement, Which Could Exacerbate Lung Illnesses

The agency says social distancing rules will limit companies’ abilities to comply with air pollution rules

By Jean Chemnick,E&E News
PHYSICS

Decoherence Is a Problem for Quantum Computing, But …

The interactions with the environment that cause it are what make quantum measurement possible

By Katherine McCormick
SPACE

Cooped Up at Home? Help Scientists Spot Penguins from Space or Seek Out Galaxies

Some citizen science projects can be done during quarantine

By Meghan Bartels,SPACE.com
EVOLUTION

Tiny Wormlike Creature May Be Our Oldest Known Ancestor

The bilateral organism crawled on the seafloor, taking in organic matter at one end and dumping the remains out the other some 555 million years ago.

By Susanne Bard | 02:49
POLICY & ETHICS

Female Surgeons Are Treated Terribly

Their male colleagues are the problem when they should be allies

By Chethan Sathya
FROM THE STORE
Tomorrow’s Medicine

One hundred years ago, many common medical treatments were found in the pages of science fiction novels, whereas today, medical journals often sound like science fiction. This eBook looks at the most promising areas where technology could transform health, including cybernetics, regenerative medicine, nanotechnology and genetically tailored treatments. Although many of these advances may not be ready to treat humans for many years, some of them may someday profoundly change—and extend—our lives.

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FROM THE ARCHIVE
QUOTE OF THE DAY

“When we decide how to vote, what to buy, where to go on vacation and myriad other things, unconscious thoughts that we’re not even aware of typically play a big role.”

John A. Bargh, Psychology Professor at Yale

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Russ Roberts

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