LATEST ARTICLES

Kristen was the picture of health. She died of colorectal cancer at 38

When she was 5 years old, Kristen McRedmond had just taken her last swing up at bat when the umpire called her out. McRedmond turned around and told the ump that she was wrong, that she had hit the ball. Kristen’s mother, Rita McRedmond, laughed as she recalled the story so many years later. “She didn’t...

Want to cut carbon emissions? Try growing cement bricks with bacteria

Ginger Krieg Dosier’s inspiration for changing the ground beneath our feet was a seashell she picked up on a beach at 8 years old. To understand how, go outside and stand on a sidewalk. OK, look down. Odds are you’re staring at one of biggest contributors of greenhouse gases on the planet. Cement is the glue that...

How scientists are tracking a massive iceberg in the making

But first: There’s a giant crack in an ice shelf of the Antarctic that’s been the source of much attention this winter, and is raising new concerns over the larger stability of the ice there. Miles O’Brien has the story, the focus of this week’s Leading Edge. If glaciology is all that it is cracked up...

What fax machines can teach us about electric cars

Imagine if you could gas up your GM car only at GM gas stations. Or if you had to find a gas station servicing cars made from 2005 to 2012 to fill up your 2011 vehicle. It would be inconvenient and frustrating, right? This is the problem electric vehicle owners face every day when...

Why did humans evolve big brains? We don’t know, but math can help

 mathematically illustrates what led to the evolution of humans’ abnormally large brains. Evolutionary biologists devised these equations to tease apart the relationship between human brain size and the cost of maintaining a large brain. Over the last few decades, the pace and stages of brain growth in humans have become clearer. From birth to preschool, our brains quadruple...