Vol. 193 No. 7
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More Stories from the April 14, 2018 issue

  1. Astronomy

    We probably won’t hear from aliens. But by the time we do, they’ll be dead.

    Astronomers build on the Drake Equation to probe the chance that humans will find existing aliens. The answer: Not likely.

  2. Animals

    Dino-bird had wings made for flapping, not just gliding

    Archaeopteryx fossils suggest the dino-birds were capable of flapping their wings in flight.

  3. Anthropology

    Ancient climate shifts may have sparked human ingenuity and networking

    Stone tools signal rise of social networking by 320,000 years ago in East Africa, researchers argue.

  4. Life

    Inked mice hint at how tattoos persist in people

    Tattoos in mice may persist due to an immune response, challenging currently held beliefs about how the skin retains tattoos.

  5. Health & Medicine

    How obesity makes it harder to taste

    Mice that gained excessive weight on a high-fat diet also lost a quarter of their taste buds.

  6. Science & Society

    Kids are starting to picture scientists as women

    An analysis of studies asking kids to draw a scientist finds that the number of females drawn has increased over the last 50 years.

  7. Health & Medicine

    Male birth control pill passes a safety test

    A prototype contraceptive for men safely reduced testosterone and other reproductive hormones during a month-long treatment.

  8. Earth

    False alarms may be a necessary part of earthquake early warnings

    To give enough time to take protective action, earthquake warning systems may have to issue alerts long before it’s clear how strong the quake will be.

  9. Life

    Earwigs take origami to extremes to fold their wings

    Stretchy joints let earwig wings flip quickly between folded and unfurled.

  10. Science & Society

    Why science still can’t pinpoint a mass shooter in the making

    Arguments flare over mass public shootings that remain scientifically mysterious.

  11. Planetary Science

    Venus may be home to a new kind of tectonics

    Venus’ surface seems to be divided into jostling blocks of crust, defying conventional wisdom about how the surfaces of rocky planets work.

  12. Animals

    Humpback whale bumps have marine biologists stumped

    Christine Gabriele is taking tissue samples from humpback whales in Hawaii to determine why more and more have nodular dermatitis.

  13. Life

    Fossils sparked Charles Darwin’s imagination

    Darwin’s Fossils recounts how finding extinct species in South America helped Charles Darwin develop his theory of evolution.

  14. Animals

    The truth about animals isn’t always pretty

    The Truth About Animals digs up surprising stories about sloths, pandas, penguins and other wildly misunderstood wildlife.

  15. Health & Medicine

    50 years on, vaccines have eliminated measles from the Americas

    Thanks to high vaccination rates, measles has mostly disappeared from the Americas.