Addiction-free Pain Relief At Last?Opioids come with a lot of downsides. They are highly addictive, and come with a slew of unwanted side effects like constipation, not to mention life-threatening ones like respiratory distress. ... More >
Here's America Before the EPAIn 1970, Republican President Richard Nixon signed an executive order creating the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). It was a time when pollution made many of our nation's ... More >
Will AI Ever Match The Human Brain?Today's artificial intelligence is certainly formidable. It can beat world champions at intricate games like chess and Go, or dominate at Jeopardy!. It can interpret heaps of data for us, guide ... More >
Is Your Router Spying On You?Amazon's Echo is a robot that sits in your house and listens. The virtual personal assistant can be summoned into action by saying its name, Alexa, and will then act on commands, like ordering a ... More >
SpaceX Could Send Two Rich People To The MoonSpaceX is already on track to make history by becoming the first private company to carry astronauts to the International Space Station in 2018. As if that wasn't ambitious enough, SpaceX CEO Elon ... More >
Our smartphones and other gadgets are powered by lithium-ion batteries, but as companies like Samsung know all too well, those charge-holders can be flammable under the wrong conditions. The hazards of lithium-ion batteries are also a concern for another group, one with a strong incentive to keep fires at bay: the U.S. Navy. Now chemists at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NLR) have announced a new battery technology that they say is both safe and rechargeable, and could make its way into electric vehicles, bikes, or ships.
NASA's 20-year Cassini mission is finally coming to a close. After years of orbiting around the Saturn system and collecting some stellar scientific data, the spacecraft is on a path of certain destruction: on Sunday, the probe officially began the last leg of its mission, which will eventually bring it so close to Saturn that the planet's gravity will drag it down and burn it to vapour.
If you think building a house on Earth is hard, try building one on Mars. Every pound of material that we ship to the red planet will cost thousands of dollars, so scientists want to construct our future martian colonies out of locally sourced materials—namely, martian dirt. But that's more difficult than it sounds.
Melting from glaciers and permafrost was not kind to the large animals of the last Ice Age. The persistent moisture turned grasslands into peatlands and bogs, a less than ideal habitat for huge grazers. As their world grew wetter, many of these megafaunal animals across Eurasia and the Americas became extinct.
Just last month, Amazon introduced a Prime feature called Outfit Compare which let users upload a pair of selfies showing different outfits to be evaluated by style experts. Today, Amazon has doubled down on its push to guide the style of everyday users with its home assistant and fashion guru, the $200 Echo Look, which can currently only be ordered by invitation.
From the danger-sign orange of Monarch butterflies, to the regal blues of the Blue Morpho, butterflies come in a veritable rainbow of colors. The insects display those incredible hues thanks to scales on their wings. Those scales are made up of crystals, which are made up of a sugar molecule called chitin (the same stuff that makes up insect exoskeletons and mushrooms). The tiny crystals on butterflies' scales are called gyroids. They're of interest to biologists, but also to materials scientists. Butterflies' gyroids are for more tiny and precise than anything made by humans today.
Imagine walking into a hospital nursery full of pre-term babies and seeing not incubators, but bags full of fluid with infants tucked securely inside. It's not a far-off science fiction fantasy: on Tuesday, researchers announced unprecedented success in keeping sheep fetuses alive within an "artificial womb" apparatus. The results are incredible. But what do they mean for humans?
Your gut is something of an immunological mystery. Unlike the rest of the body, which tends to treat foreign invaders with a singular purpose—seek and destroy—the stomach cannot afford to be so indiscriminate. It exists to help fuel the body, and that means routinely welcoming foreign bodies in the form food.