Oct. 05, 2015

4850 Feet Below: The Hunt for Dark Matter

Deep in an abandoned gold mine in rural South Dakota, a team of physicists hunt for rare and elusive quarry: dark matter.

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Sep. 28, 2015

Plants in Space!

For humans to travel to the Moon and Mars, they'll need a companion - a lowly weed known as crackwort.

space plants astrobiology mars horticulture

Sep. 10, 2015

Pedaling Through Pollution

Using biometric sensors, a wearable pollution monitor, and GPS, the a new study will detail cyclists' exposure to toxins as they bike through city streets.

biking breathing pollution cycling excercise health urban lungs darby jack steven chillrud Columbia university

Sep. 01, 2015

A Cure for the Colorblindness Blues

Using a virus-based gene therapy and a group of highly trained monkeys, Maureen and Jay Neitz may have created a cure for colorblindness.

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Aug. 03, 2015

The Unlikely Tale of a Tenacious Snail

For over 70 years, no one had seen the oblong rocksnail, until one spring day in 2011.

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Jul. 06, 2015

The Lollipop Hypothesis

Mathematicians studying fluid dynamics designed experiments to watch how lollipops dissolve.

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Jun. 19, 2015

Run, Octopus, Run!

Dr. Chrissy Huffard explains how and why an Octopus might stand up on two tentacles and run backwards

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Jun. 15, 2015

Isn't this Octopus Adorabilis?

Stephanie Bush of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute aims to classify and name a presently undescribed deep-sea cephalopod.

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Jun. 01, 2015

The Medical Wonders of Worm Spit

Dr. David Kaplan explains how bioengineers at Tufts University craft silk into a myriad of medical materials

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Jun. 03, 2011

Solar Spotting

Using the Swedish Solar Telescope, a ground-based observatory, Goran Scharmer and colleagues probe the penumbra—that's the stringy structure around the perimeter of the dark part of the sunspot. The images give scientists new insight into h...

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May. 04, 2015

Flash of the Disco Clam

Reminiscent of the flashy dance halls and shag carpets of the '70s, the disco clam flaunts frilly tentacles and its very own light show.

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Apr. 20, 2015

The Pot-Stirrer: Teaching Evolution in the South

Dr. Amanda Glaze studies the perceptions of evolution and their religious and societal influences in the American Southeast.

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Apr. 13, 2015

Forecasting the Meltdown

NASA has developed the Airborne Snow Observatory, a program that uses specialized instrumentation to carefully measure the water content.

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Apr. 06, 2015

Babies on the Brink

A series of rigorous (and adorable) experiments by Karen Adolph of NYU's Infant Action Lab shatters the myth, that babies learn to fear heights as they learn to crawl.

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Apr. 02, 2015

Easy Hard Eggs

Jeff Potter, author of Cooking for Geeks, explains how steaming eggs, even massive ostrich eggs, makes them easier to peel.

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Mar. 30, 2012

Why Spiders Don't Stick to the Web

William Eberhard, of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and the University of Costa Rica, and colleague Daniel Briceno film spiders in the lab, in the field, and under a dissecting microscope to untangle this longstanding arachnological myst...

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Mar. 12, 2015

How to Make Perfume for Artistic Expression

The smells of Los Angeles’ Koreatown—a bustling, crowded, and gritty enclave just east of downtown—aren’t particularly pleasant. K-Town, as Angelenos lovingly call it, conjures odors from loose asphalt, c...

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Feb. 25, 2015

Dawn of the Cyborg Bacteria

In a basement laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania, two robotocists have harnessed the sensing, swimming, and swarming abilities of bacteria to power microscopic robots.

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Nov. 09, 2012

Desktop Diaries: Oliver Sacks

Writer and neurologist Oliver Sacks explains what his desk means to him. From lumps of metal to lemurs, Sacks describes some of his treasures.

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Feb. 12, 2015

Is Pedigree What It's Cracked Up To Be?

Data distilled 80,000 individual dog profiles revealed that outside of the show ring, there's a lot of behavioral variation within any given breed.

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Jan. 29, 2015

Face Time

We can make split-second judgments about someone's personality and character without even consciously seeing their face.

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Jan. 22, 2015

Behind-the-Scenes at the Explorers Club

Tour the unique artifacts, including a yeti scalp and 4-tusked elephant, collected by Explorers Club members during research expeditions over the last century.

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Jan. 08, 2015

SciArts: Exoplanet Art

Artist Helena Kauppila imagines and paints her vision of what it would be like stand on the surface of another planet and look up at the stars.

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Dec. 26, 2014

Birdie In Flight: The Science of Badminton

The key to the badminton's speed is the unique aerodynamic shape of the birdie and the kinetic movements by players.

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Dec. 18, 2014

Under the Influence of Beer Foam

A team of fluid mechanics researchers at Princeton University dive into the anti-sloshing physics of foam.

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Dec. 11, 2014

Fungal Freeways

Dr. Marcus Roper of UCLA explains how fungal networks function with remarkable efficiency and prevent microscopic traffic jams.

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Dec. 04, 2014

The Design Arcade

Join the Museum of Modern Art's Senior Curator of Architecture and Design, Paola Antonelli, on an exclusive tour of the video games in their collection.

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Nov. 20, 2014

'Hot' for Turkey

Female wild turkeys parse the courtship performances of males to determine their genetic potential.

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Nov. 13, 2014

I'm Not a Dinosaur, I Just Play One on Stage

A behind-the-scenes look at how the cast and crew of Walking with Dinosaurs - The Arena Spectacular brings life-size dinosaurs to life in an theatrical setting.    Read about how the team behind Walking With Dinosaurs co...

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Oct. 30, 2014

Creature Double Feature: Zombies and Bloodsuckers

Witness two tales that will make your skin crawl and your mind reel with fear and curiosity.

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Oct. 28, 2014

Invasion of the Zombees: A Bee Horror Film

Up and down the West coast of the U.S., bees are leaving their hives, flying around at night and then suddenly dropping dead - Learn why!

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Oct. 23, 2014

No Strain, No Gain: Filter Feeding Mantas

Marine biologist and biomechanist, Dr.Misty Paig-Tran details her research into these graceful giants and reveals the multiple methods of filtration they use to sift a meal from the water.

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Oct. 09, 2014

How to Make Quark Soup

Using massive feats of engineering, Brookhaven National Laboratory has devised a recipe for cooking up tiny ephemeral batches of this quark-gluon soup, a fluid which physicists Paul Sorensen say is the most "perfect" fluid ever discovered.

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Sep. 19, 2014

Shake Your Silk-Maker: The Dance of the Peacock Spider

With their ornately-colored fur, rhythmic pulsations, and booty-shaking dance moves, male peacock spiders attract the attention of spectating females as well as researchers.

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Sep. 11, 2011

The BioArcade

Biologist Oliver Medvedik and computer programmer Keith Comito developed a kit where live single-celled organisms play a game called the BioArcade.

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Sep. 07, 2014

Quantum: An Ode to Particle Physics

Drawing on his experience as Artist-in-Residence at CERN, Gilles Jobin's dance performance, Quantum, presents an abstract meditation on the motion of particles and laws of physics.

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Aug. 21, 2014

Tar Noir: Paleoforensics at the La Brea Tar Pits

Using paleoforensics, researchers recount the grim details of life and death at the the La Brea Tar Pits.

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Aug. 20, 2014

Millions of Fossils Can't Be Wrong

The Page Museum's Chief Curator, Dr. John Harris, explains how paleontological and climatological research at the museum relies upon on tar pit's prolific fossil deposits.

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Aug. 14, 2014

Bridging the Rift: Oculus' Answer to Virtual Reality

Technological and design innovations inside the Oculus Rift make virtual reality poised to make a mass-market debut.

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Aug. 15, 2014

Stained Glass Conservation

Medieval stained glass reveals a lot about life in the Middle Ages, but keeping these artistic works from falling apart is a detailed process.

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Jul. 24, 2014

Oarfish: The Ultimate Fish Tale

Thought to the be inspiration of sea serpent stories, the monstrously long oarfish provokes wonder in nearly all who witness it. Yet despite our fascination, little is known about this fish, its lifecycle, and how it navigates its deep-sea environment.

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Jun. 17, 2014

Smarty Pants: Testing the Quality of Textiles

Confidence in our clothing shouldn't be taken for granted. It owes much to an oft-overlooked the field of study- textile quality assuranc

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Jul. 03, 2014

In a Flash: Firefly Communication

Fireflies communicate with a "language of light" that scientists still don't completely understand.

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Jun. 20, 2014

#CephalopodWeek: Celebrating All Things Tentacled

They’re the amazing cephalopods, and Science Friday, public radio’s source for news and entertaining stories about science, celebrates them with Cephalopod Week.

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Jun. 20, 2014

Teaching Ancient Nautilus New Tricks

A series of experiments by evolutionary biologists Dr. Jennifer Basil and Robyn Crook involving fish juice, blue lights, and mazes dispels the notion that the ancient Nautilus is incapable of basic learning and memory.

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Jun. 20, 2014

Caring for Cuttlefish

Using recycled soda bottles, modified cradles, and knowledge of each species' husbandry, the Monterey Bay Aquarium staff have nurtured to adulthood 95% of the cuttlefish eggs spawned.

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Jun. 20, 2014

The Vampire Squid From Hell

Although its latin name translates as "the vampire squid from hell," the vampire squid is actually a gentle steward of the ocean's depths, gracefully foraging on marine detritus.

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Jun. 20, 2014

Milking a Spider

Ever wondered how to milk a spider? In this video, Dr. Greta Binford, a researcher at Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon, extracts venom from a sleeping spider's fangs.

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Jun. 05, 2014

The Goat Brigade: Preventing Wildfires in Southern California

A herd of “elite” brush-clearing goats demonstrate why they are a versatile tool to shield against wildfires in Southern California.

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May. 16, 2014

Weeding Out and Dining In: Foraging with Tama Matsuoka Wong

Guided by professional forager and author, Tama Matsuoka Wong, Science Friday toured western New Jersey's meadows and forested trails to discover the native plants and invasive weeds that are used as culinary delicacies.

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May. 08, 2014

Choc Full of Science

Crystal formation is essential in making smooth chocolate that's solid at room temperature and melts in your mouth.

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May. 01, 2014

Nothing to Sneeze At

Sneezes and coughs generate gas clouds which can spread germs farther than previously imagined.

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Apr. 17, 2014

Suckers for Sap

By vacuum-sucking sap directly from the cut tops of juvenile maple trees, the researchers may revolutionize the maple syrup industry.

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Apr. 03, 2014

Inside Insight: Clearing and Staining Fish

Clearing and staining gobies, stingrays, and sharks has revealed to Dr. Adam Summers critical data and the beauty of each fish’s unique form.

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Mar. 21, 2014

Digital Gets Physical

Students in MIT’s Tangible Media Group break down the barriers of graphic interfaces and allow users to touch and manipulate pixels in real life.

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Mar. 13, 2014

EncROACHment: New York City's Invasive Roaches

Rutgers University entomologists unravel clues to identify a new invasive species of cockroach and what its emergence represents.

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Feb. 27, 2014

This Fish Sucks

Dr. Adam Summers of the University of Washington's Friday Harbor Labs, details how the Northern Clingfish takes the art of suction to new heights.

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Feb. 21, 2014

Forecasting Avalanches

Using field tests and a deep understanding of how to identify weaknesses in the snow pack, staff members from the Utah Avalanche Center forecast avalanches and take preventive measures.

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Feb. 14, 2014

Olympic Ski Jump Training in the Wind Tunnel

Physics Professor Adam Johnston, explains how, with the help of a wind tunnel, U.S. ski jumpers can fine tune the physics of their jumps along with the flow of air around their bodies in order to attain Olympic gold.

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Feb. 07, 2014

Out of the Bottle: Wine Psychology

Dr. Brian Wansink, Director of Cornell University's Food and Brand Lab, explains how expectations, environment, and social cues can fool us into believing that our wine tastes better or worse than it is.

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Jan. 17, 2014

Star-Crossed Galaxies

Collisions between two spiral galaxies can be spectacular affairs, filled with romance.

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Jan. 03, 2014

Out of the Bottle: Tricks of the Trade

In the second episode of our wine science series, Out of the Bottle, Dr. Gavin Sacks of Cornell University's Viticulture and Enology Program translates popular wine jargon such as "breathing," "corked," and "wine tears" into chemistry you can understand.

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Dec. 19, 2013

Out of the Bottle: Wine Flavor

A researcher from Cornell details the chemical composition of wine’s diverse flavor profiles.

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Dec. 12, 2013

Building a Synth, Bit by Bit

A new tool and toy from littleBits teaches you how synthesizers work while you make electronic music.


Nov. 21, 2013

When Water Flows Uphill

In the Leidenfrost Effect, a water droplet will float on a layer its own vapor if heated to certain temperature. This phenomenon takes center stage in a series of experiments by physicists who discovered new means of manipulating droplets of hot water.

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Nov. 15, 2013

The Other Golden Rule

Did you know that most mammals, from a house cat to an elephant, take roughly the same amount of time to urinate? Researchers at Georgia Tech studied real-life and online video streams, and discovered what enables this feat of fluid dynamics.

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Nov. 07, 2013

The Myth of the Woolly Bear

Can woolly bear caterpillars predict winter weather?

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Oct. 24, 2013

The Inner Beauty of Naked Mole Rats

How do naked mole rats live to 30 years without getting cancer? Research by Vera Gorbunova and Andrei Seluanov of the University of Rochester shows how these aesthetically challenged creatures live long, cancer-free lives.

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Sep. 07, 2012

To the Bat Cave!

Bat biologist Nickolay Hristov, of UNC’s Center for Design Innovation and Winston-Salem State University, develops new techniques for filming and visualizing bats and the caves they occupy. Some of the tools in his kit include a long-range lase...

bat, biology, filming

Aug. 31, 2012

Unwinding the Cucumber Tendril Mystery

Plants may be stationary, but they're rarely still, says biologist Roger Hangarter, creator of the website Plants in Motion. Researchers are using time-lapse photography to study the biomechanics of plant movement. For example, in an August 2012 ...

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Aug. 29, 2008

DisCERN This: Large Hadron Rap

An original rap about the Large Hadron Collider—don't miss it. Brought to you by Will Barras, who was a Ph.D. student in the department of linguistics and English language at the University of Edinburgh and science writer (and rapper) Kate ...

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Oct. 19, 2012

Geek My Pumpkin

Maniac Pumpkin Carvers Marc and Chris carve hundreds of pumpkins each fall, which go for a few hundred bucks and rarely end up on stoops. They gave us some tips for how to bring our pumpkins to the next level this Halloween.

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Nov. 23, 2012

Heavy Metal: The Physics of DIY Instruments

Composer and instrument builder Paul Rudolph makes music from garbage. John Powell, physicist and author of How Music Works, chimes in with an explanation of how Rudolph's modifications to the instruments helps transform noise into notes.

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Dec. 07, 2012

Blue Whale Barrel Roll

Blue whales can grow to 90 feet -- that's longer than a tennis court. To understand how they get so large, Jeremy Goldbogen studies their dining habits. And he found that blue whales do underwater acrobatics while they eat.

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Feb. 17, 2012

Where's the Cuttlefish?

Cuttlefish change the patterns on their body for courtship rituals, when they eat a snack, and most famously when they want to blend in. How they change their skin patterns may tell us something about how they see the world, says Duke biologist Sarah...

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Mar. 24, 2011

A Spacesuit Ballet

Of the suit he wore on the moon, Neil Armstrong wrote, "It was tough, reliable, and almost cuddly." But that cuddly suit, made by the company Playtex, had some stiff competition (literally) from rival rigid, metal designs. This video features archiva...

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Jun. 22, 2012

Bones, Books, and Bell Jars

In her new book, Bones Books and Bell Jars, physician and photographer Andrea Baldeck documents the collection of medical texts, instruments, and specimens at Philadelphia’s Mütter Museum.

photography, medical history, medical specimens, Mütter Museum, medicine

Aug. 05, 2011

Where's the Octopus?

When marine biologist Roger Hanlon captured the first scene in this video he started screaming. (If you need to see it again, here's the raw footage.) Hanlon, senior scientist at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, studies camouflage ...

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Aug. 09, 2013

Desktop Diaries: Tim White

An office with teeth.

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Aug. 02, 2013

Dark Art

A biologist takes shadow puppetry to the next level.

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Nov. 04, 2011

When Is a Moth Like a Hummingbird?

A hawk moth feeds by hovering in front of flowers and slurping nectar through a proboscis, basically a body-length straw.

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Jul. 19, 2013

Give Yourself A Hand With DIY Gripper

What high-tech materials are required for making a robotic hand that can pick up almost anything? Coffee grounds and a latex balloon.

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Jul. 12, 2013

Desktop Diaries: Jill Tarter

As the SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute’s first employee, Tarter has accumulated E.T.-themed office ornaments for the last 30 years -- including a bottle of wine to be opened "only upon detection of Extraterrestrial signal."

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Jul. 05, 2013

Lock Luster

The evolution of safe and vault lock technology is on view in midtown Manhattan.

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Jun. 28, 2013

Tiny Living

The nuts and bolts of designing, building and living in a 140-square-foot home.

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Jun. 21, 2013

Coffee's Natural Creamer

Coffee beans are filled with oils that emerge from coffee grounds under high pressure. These oils form the crema—the frothy stuff on top of an espresso.

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Jun. 14, 2013

Bamboo Bicycles Roll Out

To be bike-ready, the bamboo must be cooked in an oven, stripped, and sealed. We visited the workshop of Valid Cycles in Woodinville, Wash., to see how the bikes are made.

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Jun. 10, 2013

Al Gore: Studio Session

Former vice president Al Gore joins Ira Flatow in the studio to talk about 'The Future.'

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Jun. 07, 2013

Comet's Tail Shines Light on Sun

In 2011, comet Lovejoy traveled through the sun’s corona and lived to tell the tale. But its tail was the most telling.

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May. 31, 2013

Teacher Feature: Ethnobotanist Tom Carlson

Science Friday pays tribute to a great science teacher. "Office hours are some of my favorite hours of the week," says Tom Carlson, a medical doctor, ethnobotanist, and instructor of 1700 students annually at the University of California, Berkeley.

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May. 17, 2013

Desktop Diaries: Daniel Kahneman

"I have always emphasized the willingness to discard," says psychologist and Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman. That philosophy works on two levels -- forget desk trinkets, Kahneman doesn't have a desk -- and he doesn't hoard ideas either he says.

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May. 09, 2013

Gear for Your Coffee Grounds

Coffee experts percolate over how to get the most from your grounds. From the chemex to the wood neck, the brewmasters filter out reasons to choose one brewing device over another.

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May. 03, 2013

Fermenting with Sandor Katz

Sandor Ellix Katz, self-proclaimed "fermentation revivalist" and author of "The Art of Fermentation" (Chelsea Green Publishing, 2012) discusses the two "cultures."  

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May. 03, 2013

Living Inside the Box

Michele Bertomen and David Boyle bought an empty 20-by-40-foot lot in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and built a home constructed from shipping containers.

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Apr. 18, 2013

Every Spring, This Bird Struts its Stuff

Across Utah, the Greater sage-grouse performs a striking dance routine each morning at dawn.

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Apr. 24, 2013

Science Project: Coffee

Get the scoop on coffee flavor with Harold McGee's counter-top chemistry experiment.

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Apr. 12, 2013

Concocting the Perfect Cup of Coffee

Brew-masters pore over the chemistry and craft of making a good cup of joe.

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Apr. 04, 2013

Making Tissues from Water Droplets?

Researchers turned tiny water droplets into cooperative networks that can change shape and pass electrical signals.

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May. 14, 2009

Finding the Roots of an Ancient Crop

Agave plants, probably best known as the source of tequila, were important as a food crop long before the invention of margaritas. Wendy Hodgson, botanist at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, says the plants were cultivated as far back as 800 A...

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Michael Pollan Talks Plants and Food

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Poop and Paddle

Desktop Diaries: Oliver Sacks

Psychological Reappraisal Of Bedbugs

Where's the Octopus?


Mystery Box

Science Goes to the Movies: Jurassic World

Paleontologists Lindsay Zanno and Kenneth Lacovara share what made them clap—and cringe—while watching Jurassic World.

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