28 articles
  • youngfrank


    How Bioprinting Has Turned Frankenstein’s Mad Science Sane

    In the United States alone more than 120,000 people are waiting for organ transplants, and many will die before their turns come. What if they didn’t have to wait, because doctors could print out replacement organs on demand?That’s the ultimate goal of bioprinting, a seemingly sci-fi spinoff of the burgeoning industry of 3D printers. If […]

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    The Word “Million” Didn’t Exist Until We Needed It

    I would cut off my right hand if you find it.” That was the guarantee retired Columbia history lecturer Jens Ulff-Møller made that there was no word for “million” in Old English, a medieval predecessor of the language you’re currently reading. Some Anglo-Saxon writers understood the idea of a million, and they had a term for it: a “thousand […]

  • handgrave


    Here’s How to Make Climate Change Extra Scary

    Thirty thousand years ago, a woolly mammoth in Siberia shed a giant virus. It soon became encased in ice and, for tens of thousands of years, the virus slept.As global temperatures warm and the permafrost begins to melt, the virus stirs. It is sucked into the nostril of a researcher where it injects its DNA […]

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    Why Virtual Classes Can Be Better Than Real Ones

    An engineering professor takes online-course critics to school.

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    Here’s Why Most Neuroscientists Are Wrong About the Brain

    Most neuroscientists believe that the brain learns by rewiring itself—by changing the strength of connections between brain cells, or neurons. But experimental results published last year, from a lab at Lund University in Sweden, hint that we need to change our approach. They suggest the brain learns in a way more analogous to that of […]

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    How Many Real Friends Can You Have at Once?

    My wife can’t seem to walk for a half-hour around Ottawa, a city with nearly a million people, without running into at least three of her friends. Some people, like my wife, seem to have a zillion of them, while others appear to be content with just a handful. Having more friends seems like a […]