How Bizarre

  1. Materials Science

    Making artificial muscles with a spin

    Scientists have given ordinary fishing line and sewing thread a new twist. When coiled into tight corkscrews, the fibers can lift loads more than 100 times as heavy as those hefted by human muscles.

  2. Physics

    Levitating objects with sound

    Physicists have levitated milli­meter-sized objects. Now, the objects can levitate and move in all directions.

  3. Animals

    Dogs pick up robots’ social cues

    Dogs were more likely to pay attention to a PeopleBot robot — a machine with a laptop head and Mickey Mouse–style hands — after watching it walk, talk and shake hands with humans.