In the past year, The New York Times Sunday opinion page has run three different columns by Moises Velasquez-Manoff, a writer whose new book argues that the hygiene hypothesis — the idea that over-cleanliness can make you sick — is the one true cause behind everything from autism, to celiac disease, to allergies. While the hygiene hypothesis, itself, is perfectly plausible, Velasquez-Manoff's extension of it to cover a host of hot-button disorders and cures for said disorders is much less plausible … something that was pointed out in a negative review of his book that ran in, yes, The New York Times. Matthew Herper explores this strange dichotomy at Forbes.
Christian Stangl (previously here) turned a common process into a gorgeous abstract short film using macro footage of things as they dry out. Life needs water. But this fluid tends to evaporate over time into a gaseous state. Drying out is a chemical process that takes hours, days or even weeks. Without enough water the… READ THE REST
Researchers closely studied the wings of two moth species from China and Africa, and found that their tiny scales form a "metamaterial" that absorbs bat sonar — thus becoming an acoustic cloaking device. Pretty darn cool. The paper is paywalled here, but Nature has a good lay-persons' writeup … The researchers measured the acoustic reflections… READ THE REST
Cody from Cody's Lab bought 10 kilograms of bananas at the store, then proceeded to extract 9 grams of potassium from them. He could have gotten about twice that, but his condensation device had a design issue that caused the condensate to solidify and clog the tube. Great fun to see him toss it in… READ THE REST
To be clear, cigarettes are not illegal. But if you're a smoker in America, it can probably often almost feel that way. Anyone carrying a lighter or the visible bulge of a cigarette pack tucked in a shirt pocket is all but guaranteed to get some side-eye in 2020. But hey, we've all got our… READ THE REST
The median average salary for an American project manager is currently over $115,000 a year. As you'd expect from an employee earning a paycheck that size, companies don't hand those titles out to just anyone. To assume a proper project management position with a respected company, that person has to have an assortment of certifications,… READ THE REST
Qi wireless charging has only been around for about a decade. While it only took a few years for Android phone manufacturers like Nokia and LG to jump on the wireless charging bandwagon, it was as recently as 2017 when Apple finally joined the party with the iPhone. Taking that short history into account, it's… READ THE REST