Washington State Magazine
Search Results

Author: Eric Sorensen

79 article(s) found by this author.

Mashing up new landscapes
Summer 2015
WSU's Geographic Information System coordinator Rick Rupp helps students and researchers mash up maps and data to find insights.
Categories: Geography
Tags: Geographic Information System, GIS, Maps

Web Extra :: How to make artisan bread
Summer 2015
One of the most popular naturally leavened breads of late is the country loaf developed by Tartine Bakery chef Chad Robertson. Its precise measurement and multiple steps can be off-putting at first, but over time you’ll find you can go through many...
Categories: Food
Tags: Recipe, Bread

Billions to Be Served
Summer 2015
Scientists and chefs at the WSU Mount Vernon Research Center’s Bread Lab study local grains and traditional baking techniques to make a better loaf.
Categories: Food, Agriculture, WSU Extension
Tags: WSU Mount Vernon Research Center, Bread, Wheat, Small farms

John Barleycorn lives
Summer 2015
Barley, around since the dawn of agriculture, has fallen on hard times. Kevin Murphy and Mary Palmer Sullivan are trying to change that.
Categories: Agriculture, Food
Tags: Barley, Beer

Review :: Key to My Cage
Summer 2015
The human voice is our oldest acoustic instrument and it’s still one of the most captivating. Add a few well struck strings—just a few chords even—and you have a remarkable symphony of bass, harmony, lyrics, and emotion. This is the begu...
Categories: Music
Tags: Folk, Blues rock

Gentle commerce
Spring 2015
From humankind's long history of violence, two chapters under the scrutiny of WSU researchers could point the way to a more peaceful world.
Categories: Anthropology, Social sciences
Tags: Southwest United States, Violence, Commerce, Coffee

We’re one big counterculture
Spring 2015
Anthropologist Barry Hewlett's work with the Aka pygmies of Africa shows how developed Western cultures are often outliers.
Categories: Anthropology, Cultural studies
Tags: Africa, Aka, Attractiveness

No Pain’s a Gain
Spring 2015
WSU researchers are finding new ways to tackle America’s pain problems.
Categories: Health sciences
Tags: Opioids, Chronic pain, Pain

Diving deep in a unique tropical paradise
Winter 2014
WSU marine biology doctoral student Cori Kane studies rare endemic fish in the Hawaiian archipelago.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Marine biology, Fish, Hawaii

Holiday Sparklers and Caviar
Winter 2014
Sparkling wine and caviar add zest to the holidays. Washington is now home to some fine sparklers, while WSU researchers work on sustainable caviar.
Categories: Food
Tags: Caviar, Sparkling wine

The Scrambled Natural World of Global Warming, A Travelogue
Winter 2014
More than 20 years ago, entomologist Jesse Logan ’77 predicted that global warming would lead to the rise of the mountain pine beetle and the devastation of forests around the West. He was right. Now a menagerie of creatures, including beetles, salamanders, ticks, and birds, are caught up in climate change.
Categories: Environmental studies, Biological sciences
Tags: Insects, Forest ecology, Climate change, Entomology

Oso—a view from inside a disaster
Fall 2014
WSU professor Matt Carroll, whose academic specialty is human reaction to natural disasters, found himself personally involved when he learned his best friend Tom Durnell had died in the Oso landslide.
Categories: WSU faculty, Public affairs, Sociology
Tags: Oso mudslide, Natural disaster

Let Food Be Thy Medicine
Fall 2014
What we eat can help us fight infection, combat cancer, and address disease. A number of Washington State University scientists explore the medical benefits of a cornucopia of crops.
Categories: Agriculture, Food, Health sciences
Tags: Cancer, Nutrition

Nasty epidemic, neat science
Fall 2014
The H1N1 flu virus outbreak at WSU in 2009 challenged Health and Wellness Services, but gave opportunities for research on the spread of diseases.
Categories: WSU students, Health sciences
Tags: Influenza, Infectious diseases, Health and Wellness Services, H1N1 virus

Charting the course of a globe-trotting pathogen
Summer 2014
Jeb Owen and David Crowder, WSU entomologists and “disease detectives” chart the spread of West Nile virus in a Pacific Science Center exhibit.
Categories: Health sciences, Entomology
Tags: Diseases, West Nile Virus, Science education

Lost Highway
Summer 2014
More than 150 years ago, road builders and a military escort set out on a rugged pilgrimage to build a wagon highway across the Rocky Mountains. Historian Keith Petersen ’73 has traced the tumultuous life of the lead engineer John Mullan.
Categories: History
Tags: American West, John Mullan, Roads

Summer 2014
Salmon are a major part of the region’s culture and cuisine, as five Washington State University faculty and alumni can attest.
Categories: Food
Tags: Fishing, Salmon

The calculus of caring and cooperation
Spring 2014
Craig Parks started wondering how people decide to support some charities, but pass on and even actively oppose others.
Categories: Psychology
Tags: Altruism, Charity, Cooperation

A True Story Fraught With Peril
Spring 2014
Buried in hundreds of layers of rock are tales of fire, brimstone, destruction, and fragility.
Categories: Earth sciences
Tags: Geology, Basalt, Rocks, Volcanoes

Tiny seed, big prospects
Winter 2013
In 2013, the Year of Quinoa, WSU researchers are working on varieties and practices for growing the seed in diverse environments.
Categories: Agriculture
Tags: Quinoa

Ask Mr. Christmas Tree
Winter 2013
Gary Chastagner, a plant pathologist with the WSU Puyallup Research and Extension Center, is better known as “Mr. Christmas Tree.” He studies tree diseases, varieties, and the best Christmas tree stands.
Categories: Forestry
Tags: Christmas trees, Trees

The Beguiling Science of Bodies in Motion
Winter 2013
Through biomechanics, WSU’s experts smooth a runner’s stride, deepen our understanding of whiplash, study the impact of sports balls on bodies, and seek to build better bones.
Categories: Engineering, Biological sciences
Tags: Bones, Bioengineering, Biomechanics

Dan Rottler ’92—Atop towers of power
Winter 2013
Plant manager Dan Rottler wrangles windmills more than 200 feet high with 20-ton boxes of gears in his work for Puget Sound Energy.
Categories: Alumni, Engineering
Tags: Wind, Windmills, Mechanical engineering

Web Extra :: Fatigue at Sea: A Circumnavigator’s Story
Fall 2013
Were there a Hall of Fame of Sleep Deprivation, a special place would be reserved for single-handed sailors who routinely rise from their bunks to check their rigs and scan the horizon for oncoming vessels. It’s a reasonable safety precaution. It...
Categories: Biography, Recreation
Tags: Sailing, Fatigue

From Holland Library to hacking history
Fall 2013
Ralph Barclay stumbled across a technical journal in Holland Library in 1960 that led him to figure out how to hack the inner workings of the telephone system. His blue box inspired future tech leaders and hackers alike.
Categories: Engineering, History
Tags: Hackers, Hacking, Telecommunications

The tractor beam has arrived
Fall 2013
It's not Star Trek, but WSU physicist Phil Marston theorized a real tractor beam, which other researchers have now demonstrated in the laboratory. 
Categories: Physics
Tags: Force, Tractor beam

If You Don’t Snooze, You Lose
Fall 2013
Chances are, you do not get enough sleep. And that could be dangerous.
Categories: Biological sciences, Social sciences
Tags: Sleep, Fatigue, Police, Pilots

Eugene Rosa 1942–2013—Working for people and the planet
Fall 2013
Environmental sociologist Gene Rosa was a pioneer in his field, keeping his eye on the increasingly threatened natural environment and the people in it. He passed away in February 2013.
Categories: Environmental studies, Sociology, WSU faculty
Tags: In memoriam

The Animal Mind Reader
Summer 2013
Beyond the notion that animals other than humans may indeed possess consciousness, Jaak Panksepp’s work suggests a litany of philosophical implications: How should we treat animals? Do we have free will? Where might we search for the meaning of life? Are our most fundamental values actually biological in nature?
Categories: Veterinary medicine, Biological sciences
Tags: Emotions, Consciousness, Animal behavior, Neuroscience

Greg Blanchard—On timing and taste
Summer 2013
WSU executive chef Greg Blanchard shares his knowledge and experience of cooking at the university for 25 years, as he approaches retirement this July.
Categories: WSU history, Food, Culinary Arts
Tags: WSU staff, Chef, Cooking, Dining halls

Web Extra :: Video: Greg Blanchard on being a chef
Summer 2013
WSU executive chef Greg Blanchard reflects on his career and what it takes to be a chef. Read more about Blanchard in "On timing and taste."...
Categories: Culinary Arts
Tags: Chef, WSU staff, Video

Review :: Chicago, Barcelona Connections
Summer 2013
The Latin-themed recording is one of the great subgenres of jazz, going back at least as far as Duke Ellington’s “Caravan” and running through the likes of Dizzy Gillespie’s “Manteca” and the Getz/Gilberto collaboration that brought...
Categories: Music
Tags: Jazz

Let everyone eat bread
Summer 2013
WSU researchers are deciphering the genetic codes of wheat to develop a gluten-free wheat that celiac disease patients can eat.
Categories: Agriculture, Food
Tags: Genetics, Gluten free wheat, Celiac disease

Passing the Smell Test
Spring 2013
Throughout the living world, the nose leads the way, pioneering a course through the environment with the ability to spot virtually invisible perils and prizes.
Categories: Biological sciences, Business, Environmental studies
Tags: Smell, Smelling, Olfaction, Scents

George R. “Bob” Pettit ’52—A profile in persistence
Spring 2013
George R. “Bob” Pettit ’52, a Regents Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient and prominent cancer researcher and chemist, has faced an uphill climb in his quest for cancer-fighting compounds.
Categories: Chemistry, Alumni
Tags: Regents' Distinguished Alumnus Award, Cancer, Research

Tiny cracks, big effect
Spring 2013
Kenton Rod looked closely at the soil beneath Hanford Nuclear Reservation's 300 Area and found it has a way of holding on to uranium, slowing its release into the environment, including seeping into groundwater and the Columbia River.
Categories: Engineering, Environmental studies
Tags: Hanford, Groundwater, Nuclear waste

A Summer of Science
Winter 2012
Over nine short weeks this summer, undergraduate Laurel Graves helped develop one of the first research projects to measure how much carbon wheat consumes and releases. “The entire world, all 7 billion people,” she says, “and we’re the only ones doing this thing. It’s kind of a crazy thought.”
Categories: WSU students, Biological sciences, Education
Tags: Undergraduate research

Chris Dunagan ’74, ’75—Bearing witness to the sights and smells of our soggy backyard
Winter 2012
Chris Dunagan, environmental reporter for the Kitsap Sun for 26 years, covers the water and land of hundreds of miles of Puget Sound shoreline, from the bustling docks of Bremerton to the backwaters of Hood Canal.
Categories: Alumni, Communication
Tags: Journalism, Environmental journalism, Reporters

More energy (and other stuff) from wood
Winter 2012
WSU researchers are trying to wring a whole new suite of uses from wood, including jet fuel and other alternatives to petroleum-based products.
Categories: Materials engineering
Tags: Wood, Renewable, Biomass, Biofuels

Review :: Kayaking Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands: 60 Paddle Trips Including the Gulf Islands
Winter 2012
Fellow obsessives can relate to owning a catalog or guidebook that is transformed from the occasional reference to a well-thumbed springboard for the imagination. The Sears catalog fit that bill for rural America a century ago, as did the REI c...
Categories: Recreation
Tags: Kayaking, Puget Sound, San Juan Islands

Looking for life’s origins in the clouds of a moon
Fall 2012
Carol Turse, a doctoral candidate in WSU’s School of the Environment’s Laboratory for Astrobiological Investigations, is conducting a variation of the Miller-Urey experiment, the first successful laboratory attempt to test theories about the origin of life, to simulate the atmosphere of Saturn’s moon Titan.
Categories: Space sciences
Tags: Titan, Astrobiology, Saturn, Evolution

Race, Class, and William Julius Wilson’ s World of Opportunity
Fall 2012
Half a century ago, WSU was a national leader in producing black doctors of sociology. Among them, William Julius Wilson ’66 PhD—recipient of 45 honorary degress and the National Medal of Science, and author of landmark works that redefined poverty and race. “Going to WSU,” he says, “was the greatest decision I ever made in my life.”
Categories: Sociology, Alumni
Tags: Social justice, Sociologists, African Americans

Web Extra :: A “Monumental” Impact
Fall 2012
In 2004, the American Sociological Association gave the WSU sociology department its esteemed DuBois-Johnson-Frazier Award, noting that the department had produced more than two dozen African American doctoral degrees, many of whom went on to make ma...
Categories: Sociology, Cultural studies
Tags: African Americans, Sociologists, Awards

Come the big one, everyone becomes a Coug
Fall 2012
As part of the Resilient Washington State Initiative, a multifaceted assessment of the ways an earthquake can hurt us and how hard it will be to recover, WSU engineering professor Dan Dolan looks at how the state's infrastructure will recover.
Categories: Earth sciences, Public affairs, Engineering
Tags: Emergency management, Natural disaster, Earthquake

Web Extra :: A Brush with Snorkel Bob
Summer 2012
There is the world of science, of measured and verified observations, of slow-moving knowledge. And there’s a world of advocacy, of convictions, values, passion, and a desire for fast-moving change. Only a few slides into his PowerPoint on the ...
Categories: Environmental studies, Public affairs
Tags: Environmentalists, Ocean, Fish

Managing Nemo
Summer 2012
While collectors are hunting for tropical fish along the reefs of West Hawaii, marine scientist Brian Tissot is looking for ways to protect and replenish the colorful populations. We dive into his story, and the waters of Hawaii, as he checks in on the aquarium fishery.
Categories: Public affairs, Biological sciences
Tags: Fish, Aquariums, Hawaii, Marine biology

Not quite right as rainwater
Summer 2012
Jen McIntyre is something of a rainwater connoisseur, but you wouldn’t want to drink from her collection. Her preferred source is a drainpipe that runs from State Route 520 to a parking lot in Seattle’s Montlake neighborhood. Tens of t...
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies
Tags: Fish, Pollution, Stormwater

Bones of contention
Summer 2012
Thirty-five years ago, Carl Gustafson, an associate professor of archaeology at WSU, rubbed his fingers over a muddy bone and found what looked and felt like a projectile tip. That simple discovery, and the eventual realization that humans hunt...
Categories: Archaeology
Tags: Fossils, Bones, Paleontology, Mastodon

A blighted Northwest icon
Spring 2012
Last March, Gary Chastagner was driving around southwest Oregon scouting test plots for a study of madrone, the gnarly, reddish-brown tree found up and down the West Coast. A variety of diseases had been hitting the trees in recent year...
Categories: Agriculture, Botany
Tags: Madrone, Trees, Diseases

Mulch ado about garden plastics
Spring 2012
In 2001, Carol Miles certified WSU’s first piece of organic land, a three-acre parcel at the WSU Vancouver Research and Extension Unit. It was a landmark moment, leading the way for organically managed land at all of WSU’s researc...
Categories: Agriculture, Environmental studies
Tags: Gardening, Sustainability, Organic foods

On Closer Inspection—The curiouser and curiouser world of the small
Spring 2012
In some ways, with so much science now involving tools that detect things outside the five senses, examining the world with a microscope seems quaint. But a corps of WSU researchers—let’s call them microscopists—are wrangling photons, electrons, glowing proteins, exotic stains, and remarkably powerful devices in their pursuit of the small.
Categories: Botany, Natural sciences, Biological sciences
Tags: Scientific equipment, Cells, Microscopy, Microscopes

Review :: Good Science: The Pursuit of Truth and the Evolution of Reality
Spring 2012
Truth, writes Timothy McGettigan, is a challenging subject. It’s hard to get at, consuming the bulk of scientific endeavor for starters. It’s also hard to nail down, with paradigm shifts both altering our sense of reality while rattling our...
Categories: Sociology
Tags: Research, Innovation, Science history

Living the right-sized life
Spring 2012
I want to walk on water, climb walls, and dance on the ceiling. If insects can do it, it’s only fair that I should, too.But this thing called physics has decreed otherwise. Carol Anelli, a WSU entomologist, can tell you why, having a lifelong f...
Categories: Biological sciences, Physics
Tags: Entomology, Insects

The Wire: Urban drama, gritty reality, and Soc 496 “textbook”
Spring 2012
It’s not exactly a typical day in class, even an upper-level sociology class geared towards the grittiest of urban realities.The room is filled with the sound of gunfire. A projection screen shows a quartet of inner-city drug thieves pinned dow...
Categories: Media, Sociology
Tags: Television programs, The Wire, Social justice

Wheat: A 10,000-year relationship
Winter 2011
A while back, George DePasquale visited the ancient Italian city of Pompeii, not far from his ancestral home of Sorrento. Looking at a 2,000-year-old oven, DePasquale could easily imagine how its baker prepared and baked bread much as he does toda...
Categories: Agriculture, Food
Tags: Bread, Baking, Wheat

Winter 2011
Cell phones, Internet, car horns, children, commercials—all carry information and all work together to create in us what social scientist Herbert Simon calls "a poverty of attention." How do you rise above the din to capture what is most important? You may be surprised to learn that one of the oldest forms of communication is still one of the best.
Categories: Psychology, Communication, Education
Tags: Attention, Human development, Media

Web Extra :: Five ways to focus your attention
Winter 2011
If attention were a coin, it would be slipping through our fingers countless times a day. Here are a few simple tips to help you keep a grip. Do one thing at a time. Such advice is easy to ignore when you just want to check your phone while so...
Categories: Communication, Psychology
Tags: Self-improvement, Attention

Web Extra :: Bread books and videos
Winter 2011
More than four decades ago, The Tassajara Bread Book opened up with the following epigram: “We need more cooks, not more cookbooks.” Now we have a lot more of both, plus video. Here are few of the latest gems of the genre....
Categories: Food
Tags: Cookbooks, Baking, Video, Bread

Web Extra :: Sabermetrics As Told By The Simpsons
Winter 2011
Between the book Moneyball and the movie “Moneyball,” there was the 2010 Simpsons episode “MoneyBART,” which introduced 6 million or so people to the artist Banksy, who wrote the opening sequence. Less celebrated is the fact that the sh...
Categories: Mathematics, Athletics
Tags: Statistics, Major League Baseball, Baseball, Sabermetrics

A Coug’s Numbers, A Hollywood Story
Winter 2011
By traditional baseball standards, Scott Hatteberg’s big league days were numbered.He had been a Cougar standout, team captain, Most Valuable Player, and catcher for future All-Star Aaron Sele, with whom he went to the Red Sox in 1991. But ...
Categories: Alumni, Mathematics, Athletics
Tags: Statistics, Sabermetrics, Moneyball, Baseball

Web Extra :: Gallery: Images of Antarctica
Fall 2011
While rock hunting across Antarctica last winter, WSU geochemist Jeff Vervoort was captivated by how the landscape revealed dramatic stories of merging glaciers, tortured ice, wind-sculpted snow, and glacial debris. But where he saw a language of sci...
Categories: Visual arts, Earth sciences
Tags: Geology, Artists, Antarctica, Design

Some of the most important things your science teacher taught you are wrong
Fall 2011
There’s the science most of us learned as kids. Then there’s the science that scientists actually do.The K-12 variety is more like a cooking class, but with chemicals, goggles, an occasional Erlenmeyer flask, the unforgettable smell of fo...
Categories: Education
Tags: Teaching, Science education

Review :: The Docks
Fall 2011
In my sailing days on Puget Sound, I got used to watching for the fast-moving container ships that could overtake my little boat in a matter of minutes. One day, I found their schedules on the Internet and saw the outline of a huge, econo...
Categories: Business, History
Tags: Trade, California, Ports, Los Angeles

Billions Served
Fall 2011
Seven billion people will soon become nine billion before the global population levels off. Can so many people be fed from a finite Earth? Yes, they can, say WSU researchers. But the solutions will necessarily be many.
Categories: Social work, Food, Agriculture
Tags: Population, Hunger, Wheat, International development

The fate of a blue butterfly
Summer 2011
A century or so ago, late spring in Oregon’s Willamette Valley saw waves of delicate blue and brown butterflies across a million acres of prairie, lighting on equally delicate lupines to lay their eggs. At least we can imagine it tha...
Categories: Biological sciences, Environmental studies
Tags: Butterflies, Endangered species

What's the catch?
Summer 2011
The rainbow trout has evolved over millions of years to survive in varied but particular circumstances in the wild. The hatchery rainbow fl ourishes in its relatively new, artificial surroundings, but its acquired skill set compromises its evolution. The rainbow has so straddled the worlds of nature and nurture, says biologist Gary Thorgaard, that it has become “a world fish.”
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Genetics, Fishing, Rainbow trout, Fish

New threats, new science
Spring 2011
Sure, Darwin had to battle seasickness aboard the HMS Beagle, and he spent nearly five years getting to and from the Galapagos Islands, and it took another 23 years to incorporate his findings into his seminal work on evolutionary biology.But at ...
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Animal diseases, Birds, Evolution

The Song is You—An Instinct for Music
Spring 2011
What is music good for, anyway?
Categories: Music, Biological sciences, Anthropology
Tags: Songs, Neuroscience, Evolution

First We Eat
Winter 2010
She studies appetite. He studies satiation. Together, Sue and Bob Ritter have plumbed the mysteries  of what happens when we eat.
Categories: Biological sciences
Tags: Eating, Brain, Satiation, Appetite, Neuroscience

A New Land
Winter 2010
John Bishop was late getting to Mount St. Helens.He was only 16 years old when it blew in 1980, and it would be another decade before he began crawling around the mountain as part of his doctoral studies.“I was worried I missed all the action...
Categories: Environmental studies, Botany, Biological sciences
Tags: Mount St. Helens, Volcanoes

The deadly cough
Winter 2010
Few creatures in the course of human history have ever been as influential as the one that crawls and jumps and drinks blood in the lab of Viveka Vadyvaloo.It hit the world stage in the sixth century, starting in Lower Egypt, traveling by ship ...
Categories: Health sciences, Biological sciences
Tags: Bubonic plague, Plague, Fleas, Global Animal Health

Too much of a good thing
Fall 2010
Science has been predicting and measuring our warming planet for more than a century now. But it was only in the last two decades that most Americans came to believe the earth’s temperature was indeed rising and that the main culprit is the...
Categories: Biological sciences, Agriculture, Environmental studies
Tags: Nitrogen, Greenhouse gases, Nitrate fertilizer, Climate change

Cultivating new energy
Fall 2010
With just a whiff of irony, let’s sing a song of praise for gasoline.A single gallon contains more than 30,000 calories. You wouldn’t want to drink it, but in straight-up energy terms, that’s enough to power a human for about two weeks.Gaso...
Categories: Chemistry, Engineering, Agriculture
Tags: Sustainability, Algae, Methane, Fuels, Biofuels

Review :: We Are Not Alone
Fall 2010
From Percival Lowell’s maps of Mars to 1938’s ill-fated “War of the Worlds” broadcast, claims of life in outer space have been tinged with whimsy and sensationalism. But in recent decades, more rigorous thinking and evidence-based science ...
Categories: Space sciences
Tags: Extraterrestrial life, Astrobiology

Review :: Live & Kickin'
Fall 2010
Bill Murlin ‘63 and Carl Allen ’60 created The Wanderers soon after they met in September, 1959, on the cusp of the Great Folk Scare of the 1960s. With Al Hansen on bass, the singer-guitarists performed regularly around Pullman for three years...
Categories: Music
Tags: Folk

Dear reader
Summer 2010
A printed magazine story sits alone on a page with relatively little competition for the reader's attention. An online story sits only a few keystrokes from a torrent of other stories, tweets, videos, free classifieds and emails. And why exactly does this matter?
Categories: Computer sciences, English, Communication
Tags: Digital world, Reading, Internet, Computers, Brain

Of honor and friendship
Spring 2010
One of the most successful partnerships in WSU history began in failure.It was the spring of 1975, Kansas State University. Guy Palmer was given a piece of ore in an analytical chemistry class and told to figure out how much nickel was in it. H...
Categories: Awards and honors, Veterinary medicine, WSU faculty
Tags: Awards, Animal health

The Secret Death of Bees
Spring 2010
WSU lab probes mysterious decline in honey bee population.
Categories: Agriculture, Biological sciences
Tags: Bees, Colony Collapse Disorder, Honey

Review :: Libera
Spring 2010
Some things you expect to find on the Palouse: tractors, football fans, a smattering of laboratories probing the molecular basis of life and the reaches of space. The rural alchemy of agriculture and academia would seem less likely to nurture t...
Categories: Music
Tags: Jazz