This is the third story in a multi-part series on taxonomy and speciation. It’s meant to help you as you participate in Armchair Taxonomist — a challenge from the Encyclopedia of Life to bring scientific descriptions of animals, plants, and other living things out from behind paywalls and onto the Internet. Participants can earn cool [...]
“The future of technology will be largely determined by citizens who will design, build, and hack their own”
69k backers. $10m in the can. But now that the Pebble E-paper watch is showing up on our wrists, was it worth it?
As Dungeons and Dragons became more rulebound and combat-oriented, some players revived older, more expressive forms of the game. But is the Old School Renaissance itself just more nerd fundamentalism?
Rodents of Unusual Size do exist. We know because we just ate one. Here’s how it happened.
This is the first story in a four-part, weekly series on taxonomy and speciation. It’s meant to help you as you participate in Armchair Taxonomist — a challenge from the Encyclopedia of Life to bring scientific descriptions of animals, plants, and other living things out from behind paywalls and onto the Internet. Participants can earn [...]
Trouble is, a lot of information about living things is hidden behind paywalls or scattered across random sources where the general public can’t easily get to it. That’s where you come in! Help fill the Encyclopedia of Life’s open-source database with information about animals, plants, fungi, protozoa, and bacteria.
For the past few months I’ve been reporting a big story on the copper industry for Pacific Standard. It takes a broad look at how the global economic boom of the past decade, led by China and India, is pushing copper mining into new regions and new enormities of investment and excavation. (It’ll be out [...]
Fertilizer can explode*. We all know that. It was a key ingredient in the bomb that destroyed Oklahoma City’s Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in 1995. Last night, a factory full of the stuff went up with enough force that United States Geological Survey seismographs registered it as a magnitude 2.1 earthquake. Ammonium nitrate is [...]
When bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon on Monday, my Facebook feed was immediately filled with urgent messages. I watched as my friends and family implored their friends and family in Boston to check in, and lamented the fact that nobody could seem to get a solid cell phone connection. Calls were made, but they [...]
Photo: Matt Bresler Whatever you do, don’t call Ophira Eisenberg a comedienne. That’s an outdated, patronizing term from an era when men patted women on the head (or, unsolicited, on the ass) and called Amelia Earhart an aviatrix. If only her fiancé, now husband, had known that before he compiled a spreadsheet of every woman [...]
Jonathan Coulton and Greg Pak launch a crowdfunding campaign to create a series of comic books based on characters from Coulton’s songs
Maria Semple wrote a tremendously entertaining work of social satire combined with a mystery that kept me wondering what would happen next right up to the end.
Seven hundred years ago, millions of Europeans were wiped out by a disease we still don’t entirely understand. The Black Death might seem like a pretty open-and-shut case at this point: It was caused by plague-bearing fleas that hitched rides on the rats that infested a grim and grimy medieval world. The End. But that [...]
Read this if you want to stay out of jail. When my friend Aaron Swartz committed suicide in January, he’d been the subject of a DoJ press-release stating that the Federal prosecutors who had indicted him were planning on imprisoning him for 25 years for violating the terms of service of a site that hosted [...]