Kendra Pierre-Louis
at 10:50 AM Feb 24 2017
NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey
Nature // 

A crack along an Antarctic glacier has grown roughly 50 kilometres in a matter of months, leaving NASA researchers to believe that the resulting iceberg—known as Larsen C—may make it to the open ocean in as little as a weeks or months. The 9 km added to the rift since early January has brought it to a staggering 160 km (give or take) in length.

Sara Chodosh
at 10:50 AM Feb 24 2017
Keith Ramos // Fish and Wildlife Service
Nature // 

The fightin' sea cows are making a comeback. Manatees have been on the endangered species list since 1972, but in the last few years they've been more abundant than ever. So abundant that they may have their status downgraded to 'threatened.'

Cici Zhang
at 10:50 AM Feb 24 2017
Thiele et al. Sci. Adv. 2017
Drones // 

From body parts to supercars, the family of 3D printed products just keeps expanding. But in a study published last week in Science Advances, scientists think small: German researchers 3D printed different lenses—each smaller than the width of a human hair—onto a chip. Such micro-cameras could be perfect for tiny drones and other pint-sized robots.

Kate Baggaley
at 10:50 AM Feb 24 2017
Flickr user DigitalRalph

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 driverless cars, respond to spoken commands, and track down the answers to your internet search queries.

Mary Beth Griggs
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
NASA Photo
Nature // 

It all started with an e-mail. Three years ago, University College London professor Chronis Tzedakis had just explained the basic cycles of an ice age to an undergraduate geology class; how the Earth goes through periods of glaciation followed by warmer periods when glaciers melt. Sometimes, the timing between those periods varies dramatically.

Rachel Feltman
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
Pexels

When I saw the press release for a new study linking the risk of autism to maternal infection with genital herpes, my heart sunk. Because you can't put two scary buzzwords like "autism" and "herpes" into a press release without creating this kind of media response:

Sarah Fecht
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
NASA/JPL-Caltech
Space // 

Planet-hunters are always on the lookout for worlds that look like Earth—rocky planets that are not too hot and not too cold for liquid water to flow on the surface. Now scientists have hit the jackpot, discovering seven Earth-size exoplanets orbiting a single star just 39 light-years away.

Sara Chodosh
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
Pexels user Tookapic

Cat owners can sleep easy tonight. Well, maybe they can't if their cat likes to wake them up at 4am by gently clawing their cheeks, but they can at least put their minds at ease: owning a cat isn't actually bad for your mental health.

Mary Beth Griggs
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
Science // 

Today, the seeds of 49,000 varieties of crops—including cabbages, wheat, lentils, sweet peas, and many others—will be wheeled into a vault in a mountainside. There they will lay in in sturdy black plastic boxes in a frigid underground vault high above the Arctic Circle, an insurance policy for the entire world's food supply.

Sonia Weiser
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
Fisher Price

Say you're on the phone with a company and the automated virtual assistant needs a few seconds to “look up” your information. And then you hear it. The sound is unmistakable. It's familiar. It's the clickity-clack of a keyboard. You know it's just a sound effect, but unlike hold music or a stream of company information, it's not annoying. In fact, it's kind of comforting.

Mark D. Kaufman
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
flickr user John Fowler
Science // 

In a colossal 650-room structure built over a millennia ago in present-day New Mexico, women ruled.

Claire Maldarelli
at 10:35 AM Feb 23 2017
Margo Lillie
Nature // 

Nerves are extremely delicate structures. They don't tend to be very flexible and can get injured if they are stretched even the slightest bit too much. At the same time, nerves are needed in areas of the body that put up with a lot of lengthening and straining. Here's an extreme example: When it opens its massive mouth to feed, the rorqual whale's nerves stretch to more than double their resting length and back—all while making extremely sharp 'hairpin'-like turns—without being strained or broken. But how do they get away with treating their delicate nerves like a bunch of bungee cords?

Jeremy Deaton
at 11:13 AM Feb 22 2017
Pexels
Science // 

Think Eastern Australian got blasted by a record-breaking heatwave in the last couple of weeks? Spare a thought for the US. They're supposed to be in Winter. And yet...

Kendra Pierre-Louis
at 11:13 AM Feb 22 2017
NOAA
Science // 

You've probably heard of peak oil—the point at which oil production reaches its maximum and begins to decline—but what about peak copper? Copper helps send the electrical signals that make modern electronics like cellphones and tablets work. But there's growing concern that the prevalence of key minerals like copper is on the decline.

Sara Chodosh
at 11:13 AM Feb 22 2017
NASA
Space // 

Prepare yourself—the Pluto debate has returned, and people are not going to be able to shut up about it. Pluto might be about to regain its planethood.

 
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