Amos Zeeberg

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    Your House Is Waiting to Be Turned Into a Projection Screen

    The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, illuminated by Obscura Digital’s projectionsObscura Digital The silver screen. Movie screenings. The big and small screens. Ever since 1879, when Eadweard Muybridge used the world’s first movie projector to display a loop of 13 images of a galloping horse, the preferred place to show motion pictures has […]

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    Over the Universe—The Best Reactions to the Big Physics News

    These swirls in the cosmic microwave background show the effect of primordial gravitational waves.BICEP2 Scientists, on the whole, are a circumspect lot. When faced with a microphone or reporter’s notepad, most of them (excepting a vocal minority) hedge and temper their language, adding provisos and qualifications, burying significant news behind accurate but unexciting jargon. So […]

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    Streetlights That Watch Passersby & Turn Them Into Big Data

    Smart LEDs are installed in Newark Liberty International AirportThe Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Not so long ago, LEDs were like the slide rule of the lighting world, found mostly in the lovably geekiest of places: front panels of technical equipment, scientific kits for kids, and of course Radio Shack. But over […]

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    Imagine a World With One Universal Time Zone…

    A warped photo of Big Ben. Alan Cleaver via Flickr Earlier this month, the chief minister of the Indian state of Assam, Tarun Gogoi, started something of a brouhaha with a bold pronouncement on the generally sleepy topic of time zones. “We need a local time for Assam and the other northeastern states which will […]

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    On the Last Day of 2013, Let’s Predict the Science of 2014

    Fluorescent-labeled neurons in a mouse hippocampus made visible using the new CLARITY technique.Kwanghun Chung & Karl Deisseroth, HHMI/Stanford Univ. It’s not our fault. Blame the theorists, explorers, experimenters, and inventors.  We at Nautilus try to keep on top of all the amazing new things happening in science, but there’s simply too much of it to […]

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    The Most Popular Nautilus Blog Posts of 2013

    Two-thirds of a year ago, we set loose a new online science magazine, and along with it, Facts So Romantic. Since then FSR has served as the bloggy alter ego to the online-magazine version of Nautilus, burrowing into the same mind-expanding monthly topics with a quicker, lighter approach. Thanks to contributions from a great group […]

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    Animals’ Wildly Varying Reactions to the Smell of Death

    The stinkhorn fungus (officially known as Phallus impudicus—“impudent penis”—for obvious reasons) draws in flies with the rotting-flesh smell of putrescine.ƒred via Flickr To us humans, the scent of a rotting corpse is universally abhorrent, the very definition of disgusting. But as strong as that reaction is, many other animals don’t share our unalloyed revulsion. Goldfish […]

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    An Inspiring, Misleading Tale About Breast-Cancer Screening

      Last month, a 40-year-old woman went to have her first mammogram, an unexceptional event at a time when women are encouraged to have breast-cancer screenings early and often. What was unusual about this test was that it was witnessed not just by an X-ray technician but by millions of people sitting in their living […]

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    A Computer Program That Hacks Language & Exposes US Secrets

    One of the most significant effects of the ongoing NSA surveillance scandal is that it drew so much attention to the massive secret, official world that’s grown up in the US since the 9/11 attacks. These clandestine operations have undergone a dramatic recent expansion, though there is of course a long history of clandestine activity […]

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    Bit by Bitcoin: Virtual Currency Looks a Little More Real

    Earlier this month the FBI arrested the alleged ringleader of Silk Road, an online bazaar that allowed users to buy and sell illegal drugs (among other things), ending its life on the Web—a life that was surprisingly long, considering what was going on there. At the time many people suspected this would have the domino […]