An eminent mathematician reveals that his advances in the study of millennia-old mathematical questions owe to concepts derived from physics.
When you’re orbiting 400 kilometers above the Earth, getting to the movie-plex to watch the latest science fiction blockbuster is a bit of a drag. But the current crew of the International Space Station will still be able to watch Star Wars: The Last Jedi, according to a report from Inverse—and they’ll do so while in orbit.
NASA Public Affairs Officer Dan Huot told Inverse that the ISS crew “will be able to watch it in orbit. Don’t have a definitive timeline yet.”
This is at least partially thanks to the improvements made in the ISS’s communications systems in 2013. Those updates were intended to improve the “scientific output” of the space station, which once had to essentially rely on dial-up speed connections. The High Rate Communications System (HRCS) gave the ISS a massive upgrade in its downlink and uplink speeds—increasing the bandwidth of uplink from the ground to 25 megabits per second, making it qualify as broadband under FCC guidelines. The downlink speeds—the rate at which ISS can send data to ground stations—is a blazing 300 megabits per second. The high-speed networking gear and accompanying Ethernet upgrades were executed by the ISS’s commander at the time, Canadian astronaut and interstellar rock star Chris Hadfield, and Flight Engineer Tom Marshburn.
Why bother with fiction when you can be horrified by everyday life? We’ve found a paper about how to locate bodies in “clandestine graves” by analyzing the gas emissions they give off.
Whether you’re a bird lover or a data fiend, this poster will please you immensely.
Remember a few years back, when relieving your stuffy nose was a simple matter of going to your local pharmacy and buying Sudafed? And then one day Sudafed just….stopped working? You weren’t imagining it. According to new research, phenylephrine—the active ingredient drug makers swapped into over-the-counter decongestants when they took out pseudoephedrine—is basically useless.
When people try to spot a lie, they generally make a judgment on a number of factors, including body language, expression, and word choice. This may be a mistake. People are complicated creatures, and they send mixed messages. Picking just one criterion to indicate truthfulness improves the odds of ferreting out a lie—but only a little bit.
When it comes to the emergence of new lifeforms, we typically think of a single species evolving into another. But as a new study of fruit flies and parasitic wasps demonstrates, the emergence of a new species can set off a domino effect that, in this case, creates not one, but several new species.
Today, alum, as a chemical, is barely good enough to rub on your armpits as deodorant. During the 1400s, it became so crucial to the economy that the Papacy formed cartels to protect its monopoly on the trade.
Intestinal worms have an incredibly bad reputation. The thought of them sneaking around inside our bodies and eating us from the inside is pretty unpleasant. But for decades, results coming out of lab after lab have shown that some kinds of helminths can be extremely beneficial to their host, and aren’t parasites at all.
The victim was a seamstress, found dead in a bean patch, strangled by her own scarf. The suspect was a local creep who insisted he had nothing to do with the crime and was far away when it occurred. How did one detective prove what really happened? With dirt.
We think of bats as swooping through the air to hunt their prey, but the vampire bat is known to creep along the ground to stalk its prey. Put it on a tiny treadmill, and the crafty critter can also break into a full gallop, using its wings to propel itself along the ground.
An international team of marine biologists has made the first-ever field observations of rare Omura’s whales—one of the least known species of whales in the world — while working off the coast of Madagascar.
There’s a long and colorful history of people trying to unlock the secret of how the Egyptian pyramids were built—and possibly find hidden rooms and corridors, for good measure. And now, a new international project aims to peer through the stone walls of these ancient structures, using cosmic rays.
Meet Pliobates catalonia, an extinct species of ape that roamed the jungles of Catalonia some 11.5 million years ago. Because of this ancient creature’s many surprising physical characteristics, researchers are having to revise their conceptions of what the last common ancestor of all living apes—humans included—might have looked like.
Using the VISTA telescope, astronomers in Chile have discovered a previously undetected band of young stars hidden away behind thick clouds of dust in the central bulge (hee hee) of the Milky Way.
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and that includes a man’s (or woman’s) urine. Scientists have figured out how to transform your pee into tiny semiconducting nano crystals they’ve dubbed “quantum pee-dots.”
Want to know whether Anne Boleyn knew Utopia author Thomas More? There was a time when that answer would have involved painstakingly combing through historical archives hunting for arcane clues. But now you can search a massive online digitized database and get the answer in a fraction of the time.
Do you have initials that spell out something bad, like PIG or DIE? For a while it looked like bad initials could literally kill you. The Theory of Bad Initials set the world abuzz, until someone noticed something off about the data.
Music, if it is to be perfect, can’t be perfectly timed. A perfectly timed musical composition may sound mistimed to our stupid human brains, especially if it’s synthesized.
The extinction of the mammoths in Eurasia occurred at the end of the Pleistocene. They didn’t die alone. A lot of different megafauna, including cave bears and giant sloths, went extinct at roughly the same time. There are plenty of theories on why mammoths went extinct: climate change, disease, geological upheaval, or being hunted by humans—but a new theory says the ground is responsible.
An American husband-and-wife team working in Greece has uncovered the 3,500-year-old remains of a prominent ancient warrior who was buried alongside an assortment of riches. It’s being called the most important discovery made in continental Greece in over 65 years.
It’s not just today’s media that reports on scandalous stories of foreign decadence that probably aren’t true. In 1912 the New York Times reported that Parisian women were injecting perfume into themselves. Sounds like a good idea to me.
The Kepler Space Telescope recently picked up unprecedented flickering behavior from a distant star, leading to speculation that—among other things—it might be an alien megastructure. Now, some astronomers are saying it might just be caused by a rapidly spinning and irregularly shaped star.
A Hall thruster is powering many of the satellites moving around Earth right now. It needs 100 million (yes, you read that right, 100 million) times less fuel than chemical thrusters. But it was never remotely sturdy enough to get anything to Mars—until now.