In the past week, the Camp Fire has killed at least 56 people and leveled the Northern California town of Paradise. Another wildfire raging through the Los Angeles suburbs, the Woolsey Fire, has already destroyed more than 500 buildings and forced some 250,000 people to evacuate their homes.
Such disasters are likely to occur more frequently in the coming years, data from recent years...
In any given year, nearly 20 percent of U.S. adults, more than 40 million people, have to contend with a mental illness. Getting treatment is often a struggle; fewer than half of those affected get any sort of care, which can be especially hard to find in rural and underserved communities.11/04/2018 - 06:15 Science & Society, Technology, Neuroscience
Virtual reality may seem like the least likely technology to address the lack of mental health...
Reviews & Previews
Never Home AloneRob DunnBasic Books, $28
As I write this in my basement office, a sticky trap lies beneath my desk catching whatever insects wander by. Its current haul is pretty typical: a cricket, a spider and some small flies. But as Rob Dunn writes in his intriguing new book, Never Home Alone, I’m missing a lot if I think that’s all that lurks beneath my slippers.
At 5:10 a.m. on October 1, news director Macon Morehouse walked into her kitchen, powered on her computer and hit “start” on the coffeemaker she had preloaded the night before. It was game day for the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine, and she wanted to be ready when the announcement came from Stockholm, six time zones away.10/17/2018 - 07:00 Science & Society
It’s a ritual we follow every year at Science News;...
Science & the Public
For sale: Pristine lake. Price negotiable.
Most U.S. government attempts to quantify the costs and benefits of protecting the country’s bodies of water are likely undervaluing healthy lakes and rivers, researchers argue in a new study. That’s because some clean water benefits get left out of the analyses, sometimes because these benefits are difficult to pin numbers on. As a result, the...
Protecting the anonymity of publicly available genetic data, including DNA donated to research projects, may be impossible.
About 60 percent of people of European descent who search genetic genealogy databases will find a match with a relative who is a third cousin or closer, a new study finds. The result suggests that with a database of about 3 million people, police or anyone else with...
First Man is not a movie about the moon landing.
The Neil Armstrong biopic, opening October 12, follows about eight years of the life of the first man on the moon, and spends about eight minutes depicting the lunar surface. Instead of the triumphant ticker tape parades that characterize many movies about the space race, First Man focuses on the terror, grief and heartache that led to...
Reviews & Previews
The Sawbones BookJustin McElroy and Dr. Sydnee McElroyTeylor Smirl (illustrator)Weldon Owen, $24.99
Humans took a long, weird road to modern medicine. We don’t have everything figured out yet, but at least we’ve learned not to drink the feces of cholera victims and never to plug dental cavities with a lizard’s liver — unlike some of our ancestors.
Gruesome methods like these...
News in Brief
Two U.S. economists, William Nordhaus and Paul Romer, have received the 2018 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for their efforts to untangle the economics of climate change and technological innovations.
Nordhaus and Romer “significantly broadened the scope of economic analysis by constructing models that explain how the market economy interacts with nature and knowledge,” the...
Leon Lederman, a Nobel Prize–winning particle physicist who lifted back the curtain to the subatomic world, died on October 3 at the age of 96.
His work revealed the existence of multiple new elementary particles — with names like the muon neutrino and the bottom quark — showing that the realm of the infinitesimal was more complex than previously thought. The muon neutrino discovery...