Jacob Blitstein

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32 Books That Will Actually Change Your Life

And all you have to do is read them!

Books

Great Barrier Reef on the brink as politicians bicker

The federal government insists it is striving to avoid the Great Barrier Reef being listed "in danger" ahead of a crunch UN meeting, after rejecting …

Why babies in every country on Earth say 'mama'

Every language has a word for water. In Swahili they call it <i>maji</i>. In Danish, it's <i>vand</i>. The Japanese say <i>mizu</i>. Even though these words describe the …

The Energy Fix: How Geography Drives Energy Development

The importance of global landscapes<p>Worldwide renewable energy production reached 66.83 quadrillion BTUs in 2010. The countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development—which keeps detailed records for its 34 members [see map]—produced 16.50 quadrillion BTUs that year. Which …

How Not To Be A Dad: The Latest Science Of Male Birth Control

Examining 8 promising methods of male contraception in development. Happy Father's Day!<p><i>Click here to enter the gallery</i><p>Male birth control, like flying cars, just seems like one of those things we should have by now. It's the 21st century—if they can find the Higgs Boson and bring back <i>Arrested</i> …

The 10 Coolest Innovations We Saw At E3 2013

The greatest games and gear from Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, plus awesome hardware and indie fare.<p>The big three--Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo--came out firing on all cylinders at E3 this year. We checked out two new consoles, a stable of games, and other innovations on display from the …

What Can We Learn From Spying On Our Own Metadata?

Why let the NSA have all the fun?<p>Okay, so the National Security Agency is sitting on a treasure trove of all your metadata. What exactly can they learn about you from something as vague as the time and duration of your calls?<p>That's what Gabe Stein, resident news hacker at Co.Labs, aims to find …

Associated Press News

Experts: No 'game changer'

New military aid President Barack Obama is sending to the Syrian opposition is unlikely to tip the balance in the rebels’ favor, experts said Thursday.<p>But after Obama’s public promise that chemical weapons use by the Syrian regime would be a “game changer” for U.S. policy toward the conflict, it …

iPhone Phablet on the way? Apple is exploring bigger iPhones with up to 5.7″ screens

While we’ve been hearing quite a bit about Apple’s plans for a cheaper iPhone over the past few months, the company’s plans to go bigger have been more cloudy.<p>Now it sounds like Apple aims to go into phablet territory, a term for giant smartphones over 5-inches that may as well be tablets. Apple is …

New Human Body Part Discovered

Time to rewrite the textbooks!<p>The newest addition to human anatomy is just 15 microns thick, but its discovery will make eye surgery safer and simpler. Harminder Dua, a professor at the University of Nottingham, recently found a new layer in the human cornea, and he's calling it (can you guess?) …

The Energy Fix: Engineering Triumphs Over Wave And Tidal Forces

How water could be harnessed for roughly a third of U.S. annual electricity usage<p>The Bottom Feeder<p>Water is 800 times denser than air, and building a gen­erator able to withstand the tremendous force it generates has hampered the development of next-gen hydropower. If engineers can harness its …

Simple theory may explain mysterious dark matter

Most of the matter in the universe may be made out of particles that possess an unusual, donut-shaped electromagnetic field called an anapole.<p>This …

Dark Matter

The Exhilarating, Terrifying Experience of Doing Something NEW

I'm a fairly adventuresome person, but I don't have that thrill gene--you know, the one that makes you want to sky dive and bungee jump and have sex in public places. But I'm also a woman in my forties, which makes me, if not more staid, at least more experienced with having done, well, a LOT. So …

Scooters

The Election of 1860 & the Road to Disunion: Crash Course US History #18

Can Going Vegetarian Help You Live Longer? Maybe

If you're looking for the definitive study that might persuade meat lovers to become vegetarians, this may not be it.<p>New research published in JAMA Internal Medicine finds that vegetarian diets are linked to a slightly lower risk of early death — about 12 percent lower over a period of about six …

Buffett Award for Leadership in Conservation

WASHINGTON (June 3, 2013)—Dr. Alberto Yanosky, leader of an environmental organization in Paraguay that works to safeguard habitats and species across the country, and Charles Tumwesigye, chief of conservation area management in the Uganda Wildlife Authority, have been selected as the 2013 winners …

The Science of Hangovers

One for the road? The hidden risks of roadside alcohol availability

In the UK, you can purchase and drink alcohol in bars, restaurants, cafes, at the cinema, at the theatre and on planes and trains. However, how often …

Trust in science would be improved by study pre-registration

In an ideal world, scientific discoveries would be independent of what scientists <i>wanted</i> to discover. A good researcher would begin with an idea, …

US Institute of Medicine lays out gun-research agenda

When he responded in January to the massacre of 20 schoolchildren and six educators in Newtown, Connecticut, US President Barack Obama issued 23 …

How innovations such as goal-line technology make sport better

Writing in Nature last week, Nic Fleming argues that "the introduction of goal-line technology to football is likely to perpetrate a mass deception …

New all-solid sulfur-based battery outperforms lithium-ion technology

Scientists have designed and tested an all-solid lithium-sulfur battery with approximately four times the energy density of conventional lithium-ion …

Clean Energy

Turning point on Mars: Curiosity rover sets sights on mountain at last

After spending the past four months drilling holes in rocks on Mars, the team controlling NASA's Curiosity rover has set a course for the $2.5 billion mission's ultimate destination, a 3-mile-high (5-kilometer-high) mountain in the middle of the crater where Curiosity landed 10 months ago.<p>"We're …

Did comet impacts jump-start life on Earth?

Icy comets that crashed into Earth millions of years ago could have produced life building organic compounds.<p>Early Earth was not very hospitable when …

First Images Of How A Molecule's Structure Changes In A Reaction

Visualizing chemistry is awesome!<p>Researchers have for the first time captured atomic-scale images of molecules before and after a chemical reaction--a breakthrough that will help researchers and students better visualize chemistry and could eventually lead to improved electronics.<p>Traditionally, …