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Sports Hooliganism Comes Down to a Fear of Death: Fan riots are sparked by terrible insights that the Grim Reaper is winning.
The soccer match hadn’t even started when the cops showed up. On the streets of Marseille, France, the officers—helmeted, shields in hands, batons on belts—charged through a crowd to break up a thicket of English and Russian fans who were hurling bot
- May 30 20131 minute
Graphing Human Uniqueness
Throughout this issue, we’ve explored the question of whether humans are unique, and if so, in what ways. In one interactive piece, “The Vocabulary of Our Uniqueness,” we asked readers which words best described what makes us special. And here are th
- Oct 1 20156 minutes
Why Science Needs Metaphysics: Science can’t tell us whether science explains everything.
Technology cannot keep pace with theoretical predictions about subatomic reality coming from physics. The same applies to our ability to observe the far reaches of the universe. Theory outstrips data and can become more extravagant with the claims it
- Oct 17 20161 minute
Time Travels in Two Directions
LILY ROTHMAN SOME BOOKS OUGHT TO COME WITH A warning—not for the reader but for those nearby, who are bound to be interrupted with passages read aloud. Mind-blowing ideas demand to be shared. Such a warning ought to come with both James Gleick’s Ti
- Jan 16 20171 minute
Are Some Years More Important Than Others?
LILY ROTHMAN THE YEAR 2016 MIGHT BE OVER, BUT debates rage on about whether it was one of the most important—or worst—years ever. Yet amid talk of surprising election results and shocking celebrity deaths, these conversations often miss a key point:
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Editor's Note: The Next Revolution
In this issue, we celebrate our Young Millionaires. These are the faces and the inspiration of tomorrow.
- Apr 10 20173 minutes
How (And When) To Think Like A Philosopher
Some forms of critical evaluation and philosophical thinking are hard because they force us to suspend other habits of mind that serve us well when our goal is to engage others, says Tania Lombrozo.
- Jan 1 20162 minutes
Meet Fear's Antidote: Hope
A seemingly small act -- returning to normal, daily life after tragedy -- takes a great deal of courage.
- Aug 1 20152 minutes
What to Do When a Colleague Acts Unethically
Q: One of my law partners had an intern pretend to be him and take an ethics course the partner needed to satisfy his continuing legal education requirement. When I learned about it, I challenged his actions. He pushed back, claiming he’d created a w
- May 26 20161 minute
Spark of Science: Robbert Dijkgraaf: The director of the Institute for Advanced Study on the wonders of his childhood attic.
Robbert Dijkgraaf will sometimes let himself drift back to his childhood attic in the Netherlands. It was there that he did some of his first physics experiments, playing with discarded binocular optics that his father kept stacked in boxes. As he ha
- Dec 1 20131 minute
The 5 Traits You Need to Dominate Any Industry
Great people, no matter their field, have similar habits. Learn them and then use them in your own quest to greatness.
- May 25 20155 minutes
How Science Can Learn From Writing That Is “Not Even Wrong”
“…when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you.” –Nietzsche For some people, this quote is very evocative. It feels important, and beautiful. Others feel like it doesn’t mean anything at all, because the idea of a deep hole looking
- Apr 1 20173 minutes
The Elements of Wisdom
Author and radio host Krista Tippett, who has spent years interviewing some of the world’s greatest thinkers, shares what she’s learned about being an enlightened leader.
- Apr 5 20173 minutes
Is Neuroscience Rediscovering The Soul?
The transcendence of human into information is either almost here, a step in evolution — or an impossibility, a mad dream of people who can't accept the inevitability of death, says Marcelo Gleiser.
- May 14 20131 minute
Are We Important to the Universe?
Is there something special about humanity’s method of understanding the world around us? If there are other intelligent beings in the world, would their knowledge be important in the same way? David Deutsch‘s research suggests an affirmative answer t
- Jan 27 20171 minute
Why Pascal’s Wager Is Eminently Modern
On the evening of November 23rd, 1654, the brilliant polymath Blaise Pascal was thrown from his horse-drawn carriage, the creatures having been frightened by a thunderstorm. The horses fell off the bridge they had been crossing into the turbulent riv
- Jun 1 20164 minutes
A Head of STEAM
Regular readers of this column may recall that my father was a scientist at Bell Telephone Laboratories. Beginning his work in the 1950s, when computers were the size of classrooms and programming was something that was done by executives at one of t
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Why David Hume Is So Hot Right Now
David Chalmers, co-director of the Center for Mind, Brain and Consciousness at New York University, once undertook something odd for a philosopher: He conducted an international poll. In November 2009, he and his then-PhD advisee, David Bourget, aske
- May 28 20156 minutes
Your Brain Can’t Handle the Moon: How the moon stirs tension between your conscious and subconscious minds.
What is this new theory?” the long-retired New York University cognitive psychologist, Lloyd Kaufman, asked me. We were sitting behind the wooden desk of his cozy home office. He had a stack of all his papers on the moon illusion, freshly printed, wa
- May 16 20163 minutes
This Man Memorized a 60,000-Word Poem Using Deep Encoding
Of man’s first disobedience, and the fruit of that forbidden tree,” John Basinger said aloud to himself, as he walked on a treadmill. “Of man’s first disobedience…” In 1992, at the age of 58, Basinger decided to memorize Paradise Lost, John Milton’s
- May 14 201512 minutes
The Trouble With Scientists: How one psychologist is tackling human biases in science.
Sometimes it seems surprising that science functions at all. In 2005, medical science was shaken by a paper with the provocative title “Why most published research findings are false.”1 Written by John Ioannidis, a professor of medicine at Stanford U
- Mar 22 20172 minutes
Are We Being Too Superficial About the Gender Problem in Science?
Why should the share of women in a given occupation affect its average pay? It’s a curious inverse relationship. Census data show that when the former increases, the latter decreases—when certain occupations see large influxes of female labor, they s
- Dec 28 20164 minutes
My Personal Hero: Priyamvada Natarajan on Martin Schwarzchild (and Mr. Carter)
I was an inquisitive child and my parents encouraged me and actively cultivated my curiosity. My first truly independent adventure, when I was 10, was to secretly take a public bus on my own to the Delhi Public Library. Given how quickly I was wolfin
- Apr 13 20171 minute
Decorate Your Space With These Beautiful Science Art Posters
Stack Commerce In a world that values the Kardashians over Kelvin, the true beauty of science is often overlooked. These stunning Science and Space Art Posters change the game, celebrating amazing engineering and the wonders of astronomy with an arti
- Apr 10 20172 minutes
A 'Hot Zone' In The Brain May Reveal When, And Even What, We Dream
When people have dreams, an area near the back of the brain seems to wake up. And specific patterns of brain activity in that area can even reveal what we're dreaming about.
- Apr 22 20171 minute
PHOTOS: Scientists Take To Washington To Stress A Nonpartisan Agenda
The science community feels threatened under the current administration. Researchers, educators and activists took to the nation's capital to say that cuts to scientific funding affect us all.
- Nov 13 20163 minutes
It’s Time to Retire the “Trolley Problem”
In the 1960s, the moral philosopher Philippa Foot devised a thought experiment that would revolutionize her field. This ethical puzzle, today known as the “trolley problem,” has become so influential—not just in philosophy but also in neuroscience, b
- Apr 22 20176 minutes
Meet The Everyday Scientists, Doctors And Engineers Of NYC's March For Science
Scientists, doctors and grad students alike took to the March for Science to stand in support of evidence-based politics.