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Oct. 16, 2015

Science Friday Goes to St. Paul

by Christian Skotte

On November 3rd, Science Friday will join Minnesotans to talk the science of superheroes.

Oct. 14, 2015

Did Dark Matter Kill the Dinosaurs?

by Marcus Woo

The invisible stuff that comprises a quarter of the universe could be more complex that previously thought.

dark matter, wimp, wimps, pions, simp, simps, self-interacting dark matter
Oct. 07, 2015

Picture of the Week: LUX's Photomultipler Tubes

by Chau Tu

This honeycomb-like array is helping scientists on their search for dark matter.

dark matter
Oct. 01, 2015

Princess Leia and the Conundrum of Language Translation

by David J. Peterson

An excerpt from David J. Peterson's The Art of Language Invention.

david j. peterson, art of the language invention, linguistics
Sep. 30, 2015

10 Questions for…Dava Newman

by Chau Tu

The new NASA deputy administrator chats about her influences and the space agency’s big plans for Mars.

Sep. 24, 2015

Agatha Christie: From Pharmacist's Apprentice to Poison Expert

by Kathryn Harkup

An excerpt from A is for Arsenic, by Kathryn Harkup.

agatha christie, kathryn harkup, a is for arsenic
Sep. 17, 2015

From Shaking Palsy to Parkinson's: Defining a Neurodegenerative Disease

by Jon Palfreman

An excerpt from "Brain Storms," by Jon Palfreman.

parkinson's disease, brain storms, jon palfreman
Sep. 17, 2015

From Atop an Ecuadorian Peak, an Epiphany About Nature

by Andrea Wulf

An excerpt from Andrea Wulf's "The Invention of Nature."

andrea wulf, alexander von humboldt
Sep. 03, 2015

Aziz Ansari on How to Date Better

by Aziz Ansari

An excerpt from Aziz Ansari's book "Modern Romance."

aziz ansari, online dating
Sep. 03, 2015

The Ritual of Straws

by Steve Silberman

An excerpt from "Neurotribes," by Steve Silberman.

steve silberman, neurotribes
Sep. 01, 2015

A Vaginal Ecologist's Crusade Against HIV in Women

by Dinsa Sachan

Sharon Hillier is using her expertise in women's nether regions to bring an HIV-prevention drug—targeting females—to market.

hiv, vagina, vaginal ecologist
Aug. 26, 2015

Picture of the Week: DNA Bunny

by Julie Leibach

Researchers have developed a method to build tiny structures out of DNA based on 3-D polygonal shapes created with a computer.

DNA origami, DNA nanotechnology
Aug. 19, 2015

Picture of the Week: Corpse Flower

by Julie Leibach

The putrid odor of a large tropical plant has begun wafting through the Denver Botanic Gardens—and visitors are lining up to inhale deeply.

corpse flower, denver, titan arum
Aug. 17, 2015

Does Sound Affect the Way We Taste?

by Chau Tu

Research suggests that sound is the “forgotten sense” when it comes to how we perceive flavors.

Aug. 12, 2015

SciFri Book Club Meet-Up

by Christian Skotte

Meet the author of The Soul of a New Machine at Google's New York City headquarters.

Aug. 11, 2015

Picture of the Week: Blue-Green Algae Bloom

by Michele Berger

This picture, shot by a drone, reveals the verdant fingers of a blue-green algae bloom.

harmful algal bloom, hab, algae, lake erie
Aug. 11, 2015

Quiz: Is This Panda Pregnant?

by Becky Fogel

Take our Panda Pregnancy Test to see how much you know about panda reproduction.

panda
Aug. 10, 2015

Science Diction: Thermometer

by Howard Markel

The man who coined the term also created an early “puzzle book” full of scientific brainteasers.

Aug. 07, 2015

Join the SciFri Book Club This Summer

by Annie Minoff

This August, the SciFri Book Club reads Tracy Kidder’s love letter to computer engineers, "The Soul of a New Machine." Here’s how to participate.

book club, soul of a new machine
Aug. 06, 2015

March of the Computers

by Tracy Kidder

An excerpt from The Soul of a New Machine, by Tracy Kidder.

Aug. 05, 2015

Picture of the Week: Blue Morpho Butterflies

by Emma Bryce

Biologists are using the medley of blues and browns in these wings to help them understand butterfly wing development.

butterflies, gynandromorphs
Jul. 29, 2015

Picture of the Week: Kelvin-Helmholtz Clouds

by Chau Tu

These picturesque clouds reveal a particular kind of turbulence in the atmosphere.

kelvin-helmholtz
Jul. 23, 2015

Picture of the Week: Saharan Silver Ant

by Julie Leibach

Ant-Man's cool. But this ant is cooler, thanks to metallic-looking hairs that help it beat the African desert heat.

ants, sahara silver ant, scorching, desert, sand, silver hairs, antman
Jul. 22, 2015

Looks Fishy, Tastes Fishy. But Where's the Fish?

by Susan Cosier

For vegetarians, allergy sufferers, and the epicurious among us, chefs are getting creative with seafood substitutes.

faux fish, sushi, seafood, fake fish, shrimp, tuna, ahi tuna, vegetarian, vegan
Jul. 21, 2015

What Do You Know About Science?

by Brandon Echter

Unleash the geek, and let us know how familiar you are with a variety of scientific concepts.

Jul. 16, 2015

A Sleepless Night Aboard the Spaceship

by Kim Stanley Robinson

An excerpt from Aurora, by Kim Stanley Robinson.

kim stanley robinson
Jul. 15, 2015

Picture of the Week: Pluto

by Julie Leibach

Our most up-close-and-personal shot of the (dwarf) planet yet.

pluto, new horizons, pluto flyby
Jul. 09, 2015

The Antenna That Detected the Big Bang

by John Graham-Cumming

An excerpt from John Graham-Cumming's Geek Atlas.

Jul. 08, 2015

Picture of the Week: Axolotl

by Chau Tu

This critically endangered salamander reaches sexual maturity without undergoing metamorphosis.

axolotl
Jul. 06, 2015

Science Diction: Dinosaur

by Howard Markel

One of the best dinosaur stories of them all centers on the man who gave these remarkably extinct beasts their name.

dinosaur, richard owen, charles darwin
Jul. 06, 2015

Take the Science Friday Lollipop Challenge!

by Luke Groskin

Test out how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop, and report back.

lollipop, tootsie pop
Jul. 03, 2015

Beyond the Pie Chart

by Annie Minoff

Information designer David McCandless uses beautiful, complex graphics to illuminate science, leaving the lowly pie chart in the dust.

Jun. 30, 2015

Picture of the Week: Sunshine Recorder

by Elizabeth Preston

This antique technology, called a Campbell-Stokes sunshine recorder, helps researchers maintain North America’s longest-running weather record.

sunshine recorder, blue hill observatory
Jun. 25, 2015

A Peek Inside the Mind of Elon Musk

by Ashlee Vance

An excerpt from the new biography Elon Musk, by Ashlee Vance.

elon musk, ashlee vance
Jun. 25, 2015

Science Friday at the Aspen Ideas Festival

by Christian Skotte

Ira Flatow and the SciFri crew will put on a live show in Colorado on June 30th.

aspen, apsen, colorado, science friday live
Jun. 25, 2015

The Octopus Whisperer

by Alisa Opar

To keep the brainy creatures healthy in captivity, caretakers employ a variety of tricks—including dog toys.

octopuses, cephalopod, cephalopod week
Jun. 23, 2015

Picture of the Week: Cock-Eyed Squid

by Chau Tu

This midwater cephalopod sports different-size eyes for different functions.

squid, cephalopod week, cock-eyed squid
Jun. 22, 2015

Take a Selfielopod for #CephalopodWeek!

by Brandon Echter

Print one of our cutouts and take your own selfielopod for Cephalopod Week.

cephalopod week
Jun. 17, 2015

Picture of the Week: Ferrofluid

by Marcus Woo

Liquid magnets lend themselves to art, as well as medical research.

ferrofluid, cancer, tumor
Jun. 12, 2015

What Lemurs Can Teach Us About Human Evolution

by Ian Tattersall

An excerpt from Ian Tattersall's The Strange Case of the Rickety Cossack.

ian tattersall, lemur, paleontology
Jun. 11, 2015

The Silk Road’s Turn Toward Biotechnology

by Julie Leibach

Using a protein found in silkworm moth cocoons, researchers at Tufts University in Boston are developing a range of biodegradable materials and therapeutic devices.

silk, silk fibroin, polymer, biopolymer, electronic, fiorenzo omenetto, david kaplan
Jun. 09, 2015

Picture of the Week: The Green Rose

by Chau Tu

This mutated rose has sepals instead of petals.

rose, green rose, botany
Jun. 05, 2015

What Role Does the Sun Play in Vitamin D Synthesis?

by Michele Berger

The sun kickstarts a process that converts a vitamin D precursor into the active form your body needs.

Jun. 03, 2015

Picture of the Week: Milk Drop

by Emma Bryce

An engineer creates a perfect liquid crown using innovative flash photography.

doc edgerton, photography, flash
Jun. 01, 2015

Science Diction: Sun

by Howard Markel

The ancient Greeks personified the sun as a handsome god named Helios.

May. 27, 2015

Picture of the Week: Limpet Teeth

by Laura Dattaro

The title-holder for strongest biological material goes to a small mollusk.

limpet, sea snail
May. 22, 2015

The Day the Moon Blew Up

by Neal Stephenson

An excerpt from Neal Stephenson's new book, Seveneves.

neal stephenson, excerpt, seveneves
May. 22, 2015

A Date Palm Named Methuselah

by Thor Hanson

An excerpt from The Triumph of Seeds, by Thor Hanson.

thor hanson, seeds
May. 21, 2015

The Fine Art of Toxic Waste

by Jennifer Balmer

An engineer and an artist are transforming pollution from coal mines into pigments used to tint paint.

toxic paint, pollution, polluted streams, ohio, guy riefler, john sabraw
May. 20, 2015

Picture of the Week: Bombardier Beetle

by Adam Hoffman

Researchers have figured how a toxin-spraying beetle packs its pulsing punch.

bombardier beetle, beetles, toxic spray, mit, eric arndt

To access older blog posts, navigate via the archive links in the sidebar at left.

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