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Your search has returned 30 articles:
  • People

    Protecting the planet

    Catharine “Cassie” Conley has the coolest job title at NASA: She’s the agency’s planetary protection officer. (The best title used to be “director of the universe,” but a reconfiguration a few years back eliminated that job description, she says.)

    Since 2006, Conley (right) has been charged with preventing Earth from being overrun by extraterrestrial microbes or other contaminants...

    10/19/2012 - 11:24 Microbes
  • SN Online

    SN Online

    ON THE SCENE BLOG Deep brain stimulation shows promise for treating spinal cord injuries. Read “Brain zap helps spine-damaged rats walk.”

    ATOM & COSMOS Two white dwarf stars may have triggered a supernova that left bubble-shaped remains. See “No companion in supernova debris.”

    HUMANS       A small-scale society figures out how to put an end to years of...

    10/19/2012 - 11:24
  • Letters to the Editor


    Fractious debateRachel Ehrenberg’s feature story on hydraulic fracturing “The Facts Behind the Frack,“ (SN: 9/8/12, p. 20) spurred a big response from readers. We received letters voicing strong opinions on both sides of the fracking debate. The article was intended as an overview of what science has to say about the risks of fracking and, due to space constraints, could not cover every...

    10/19/2012 - 11:23
  • Science Future

    Science Future for November 3, 2012

    November 8–16 Take in nine days of science-based films during the Imagine Science Film Festival at several locations around New York City. This year’s films explore the mind, brain and time. See

    November 17 A new exhibit called “Our Global Kitchen” at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City explores issues around growing and eating food. More...

    10/19/2012 - 11:21
  • Science Past from the issue of November 3, 1962

    PAST-SEEKING CAMERA — A camera that can “see” what already has happened as well as what is happening may have provided the United States with information on missile bases in Cuba…. Special photographic plates are sensitive to heat (infrared) radiation and the past presence of objects is shown differentially. This is only one of the many unique photo-devices developed for the defense of the...

    10/19/2012 - 11:21
  • Reviews & Previews

    The Joy of x

    The world would be a better place, it is safe to say, if everybody had a basic understanding of mathematics and an appreciation for its scope and power. Economics, science and medicine, energy and the environment and diverse realms of public policy all depend on math as a guide to factual accuracy, sound judgment and intelligent opinion.

    Sadly, the U.S. education system...

    10/19/2012 - 11:13 Numbers
  • Reviews & Previews

    Homo Mysterious

    Through an evolutionary lens, this book explores proposals — probable and improbable — that seek to explain the mysteries of human biology and behavior. Looking at questions such as what adaptive advantages, if any, human ancestors might have gotten out of developing the mental capacities for art, Barash provides no pat answers. Instead, he delights in all that remains unknown and...

    10/19/2012 - 11:13 Human Evolution
  • Reviews & Previews

    Fifty Minerals That Changed the Course of History by Eric Chaline

    From alabaster to zinc, this book highlights the scientific, cultural and commercial significance of a bevy of alloys, metals, rocks and gemstones.

    Firefly, 2012, 224 p., $29.95
    10/19/2012 - 11:08
  • Reviews & Previews

    Owls of the World: A Photographic Guide by Heimo Mikkola

    Spectacular imagery enhances this detailed guide to 249 species of owls, including sections on owl biology, evolution and behavior.

    Firefly, 2012, 512 p., $49.95
    10/19/2012 - 11:07
  • Reviews & Previews

    The Science of Human Perfection: How Genes Became the Heart of American Medicine by Nathaniel Comfort

    A historian finds parallels between the 19th century eugenics movement and the rise of modern human genetics.

    Yale Univ., 2012, 316 p., $35
    10/19/2012 - 11:06