Science + Technology – Articles, Analysis, Opinion

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How do they do while sleeping what we can barely do at all? Carlos Bustamante Restrepo

Neuromechanics of flamingos’ amazing feats of balance

These birds spend long periods, often asleep, standing on one leg. Is it passive biomechanics or active nervous system control of their muscles that allows them to do easily what's impossible for us?
When is it okay for the government to keep a secret? sharpshutter via shutterstock.com

Should spies use secret software vulnerabilities?

What's the best way for spy agencies to protect the public: secretly exploit software flaws to gather intelligence, or warn the world and avert malicious cyberattacks?
Balancing and doing tricks requires visual attention. ThamKC via shutterstock.com

Fidget toys aren’t just hype

Fidget items can have practical uses that help people calm down and stay focused. The problem with spinners may be that they require visual attention, which can distract users and others nearby.
People don’t want to be interrupted to update their software. irin73bal via Shutterstock.com

Why installing software updates makes us WannaCry

People don't want to endure the interruptions and inconveniences of keeping their computer software up to date. Research tells us why, and how we might fix the problem – and protect ourselves.
A shot of fake news now and your defenses are raised in the future? funnyangel/Shutterstock.com.

Inoculation theory: Using misinformation to fight misinformation

Does science have an answer to science denial? Just as being vaccinated protects you from a later full-blown infection, a bit of misinformation explained could help ward off other cases down the road.
Between the Earth and the moon: An artist’s rendering of a refueling depot for deep-space exploration. Sung Wha Kang (RISD)

Mining the moon for rocket fuel to get us to Mars

To get us to Mars and beyond, a team of students from around the world has a plan involving lunar rovers mining ice and a space station between the Earth and the moon.
Artificial intelligence can bring many benefits to human gamers. Sam Jordan Belanger

Computers to humans: Shall we play a game?

Twenty years after Deep Blue beat Garry Kasparov at chess, artificial intelligence can make games more fun, and perhaps even endlessly enjoyable, if it learns to adapt.
People seem to think industry-funded research belongs in the garbage. mllejules/Shutterstock.com

People don’t trust scientific research when companies are involved

Scientists need funding to do their work. But a new study finds turning to industry partners taints perceptions of university research, and including other kinds of partners doesn't really help.
Seeking to make stories that surround us. 'Screen,' by Noah Wardrip-Fruin, Robert Coover, Shawn Greenlee, Andrew McClain, and Ben "Sascha" Shine

The future is in interactive storytelling

People want video games and interactive experiences that help them explore deep and meaningful themes, such as creating family, valuing diversity and living responsibly.
What if you could unlock your smartphone this way? Janne Lindqvist

Could a doodle replace your password?

A simple idea that's surprisingly secure: drawing your own unlock pattern on a touchscreen. Faster and easier to remember than a password, and much harder to guess or crack.