How to Give Mars an Atmosphere, Maybe
The plan for an artificial Martian magnetosphere may sound “fanciful,” but researchers say that emerging research is starting to show that a miniature magnetosphere can be used to protect humans and spacecraft.NASA Earth is most fortunate to have vast webs of magnetic fields surrounding it. Without them, much of our atmosphere would have been gradually […]
The Hidden Science and Tech of the Byzantine Empire
Byzantine military inventors perfected Greek Fire, a combustible liquid like napalm that could be hurled at enemy ships (or lobbed against land armies as hand grenades).Madrid Skylitzes (12th century) / Wikicommons Byzantine civilization, the eastern Roman empire whose capital was at Constantinople, is mostly known today for its spirituality and eccentricities, including the spectacular church […]
The Prison Guard with a Gift for Cracking Gang Codes
Former correction officer Gary Klivans doesn’t want to be photographed more clearly for fear of gang retaliation.Gary Klivans As a corrections officer at a Westchester County, N.Y., prison in the 1990s, Gary Klivans was a one-man gang unit. Members of The Latin Kings and the Bloods made up a sizable part of the prison population. […]
Love, Death, and Other Forgotten Traditions
What we don’t tell our children.
Why Females Decide What’s Beautiful
Uncovering the nature of sexual selection.
The Mate Selection Trapdoor
Tracing the evolution of hidden sexual preferences.
What Tech Can Learn from the Fruit Fly’s Search Algorithm
Scientists are starting to understand that search powers much of the natural world, too.Image by Intelligent Product Solutions / YouTube Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” Verse 7:7 from the Gospel of Matthew is generally considered to be a comment on […]
The Rise and Fall of the English Sentence
The surprising forces influencing the complexity of the language we speak and write.
Andy Weir Visits the Moon
The best-selling writer of “The Martian” has a new book out, and it’s set closer to home.
When Mollusks Fall in Love
Two stories from the remarkable work of Sy Montgomery and Elizabeth Marshall Thomas.