- The new movie The Martian got its start as a blog. It’s out the week NASA announces the discovery of water on the red planet. So why, Lisa Messeri asks, does the science of Mars fare so poorly against Matt Damon?
- Tim Flannery reviews two extraordinary-sounding books about the social lives of animals. In related news: macaquetor-network theory at work. (In possibly-related news: the woolliest sheep in the world is in Australia. Or was, before it was emergency-sheared.)
- Turns out it wasn’t just Volkswagen manipulating its emissions tests. Oops! But the story of how VW went down this road is very interesting and very STS.
- A conference at the CUNY Graduate Center called “The Way of the Flesh” on April 7-8 is now taking submissions.
- A stunning graphic about the history of colors from Lapham’s Quarterly.
- Cheese in evolutionary perspective.
- Arctic dinosaurs discovered!
- And in case you missed it, the new MacArthur geniuses.
- The Pope’s encyclical on climate change, published by Melville House Press with an introduction by Naomi Oreskes.
- An incredible interview with five scientists about what came true in their fields, and didn’t.
- Why Rosalind Franklin is more important than ever.
- The first withdrawal from the Arctic seed vault. Uh oh.
- A cool BuzzFeed listicle (ugh) about the Natural History Museum in London.
- The Volkswagen defeat device and the dangerous future of computerized cars. Also, apparently VW is full of engineers who don’t believe in climate change.
- An oldie but goodie: the invisible labor force behind your curated news feed.
- And a profile of the blog that has “made retractions sexy”: RetractionWatch.
- Alex Wellerstein found the above remarkable diagram from a December 1945 U.S. Navy report on medical effects of atomic bombs.
- Reopened relations between the U.S. and Cuba could lead to advances in cancer research, which Cuban medicine is quite good at.
- A neurologist writes on artificial intelligence.
- A Hindenburg expert warns us not to go to Mars.
- In lots of ways, it turns out, humans still beat robots for exploring the bottom of the sea, but NOAA has cut funding for the best submersible research lab in the Pacific.
- How is our constant living in a virtual world rewiring our brains?
- An essay on the early 19th century New York naturalist and polymath Dr. Samuel Mitchill.
- A review of Michael Gordin’s new book on the languages of science.
- The vampire squirrel exists!
- JSTOR merch.
- The President of the United States has ordered the U.S. government to take into account the findings of behavioral science.
Tacit knowledge and lay expertise: the actor Ben Foster doped so he could better understand Lance Armstrong, whom he’s portraying in a new biopic. (Not everyone is thrilled.)
Campus police vs. the million-dollar map thief.
Plants are predators, too! (Don’t watch the video if you are a big fan of snails.)
What’s the point of digitizing history?
Uber flat-out bought Carnegie Mellon’s world-leading robotics department.
- Our move is official!
- “I just think it’s worth trying to preserve Kim.” On cryogenics, immortality, and whether we want to live forever.
- Pictures of a giant wooden mockup of the Soviet space shuttle, in the woods.
- Where your heirloom tomatoes come from.
- Felix Salmon argues against attempts to calculate the objectively-best destination for your charity.
- There’s a new collection of speculative fiction about 9/11, including stories placing the event in the real longue durée.