Capsules containing ketamine. Photo: Nicolas Asfouri/AFP
Could ketamine stop suicide?
By Michael Brooks - 29 January 8:00

The drug has been proven as a reliever of suicidal thoughts. With some doctors reluctant to prescribe SSRIs, it could provide the answer.

A doctor at work. Photo: Adam Berry/Getty Images
Osteoporosis is medicine’s Cinderella diagnosis. It rarely gets a look-in
By Phil Whitaker - 22 January 10:29

Osteoporosis gets less attention than the "big, ugly stepsisters' -- yet roughly three million in the UK are affected.

A light bulb. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
How harnessing the strangeness of light allows science to shine
By Michael Brooks - 22 January 10:10

From eyecare to creating the coldest thing in the universe, lasers show science at its most illuminating.

Hawking in 1991. Photo: Rex/Tom Pilston/The Independent
Stephen Hawking’s life is a triumph of intellect over adversity
By Martin Rees - 21 January 11:19

Stephen Hawking received his "death sentence" more than 50 years ago. The Astronomer Royal pays tribute to him.

Robots assemble a car. Photo: Camera Press
Reign of the robots: how to live in the machine age
By Ian Leslie - 21 January 10:50

By using ever more machines we lose not only physical skills, but cognitive faculties.

The image of the Martian surface that confirmed the survival of Beagle2. Image: HiRISE/NASA/Leicester
ESA's elusive Mars lander Beagle2 discovered - but how?
By Monica Grady - 19 January 13:35

Eureka! We've found Beagle2 – now, where did Philae go?

23andMe Co-Founder Anne Wojcicki. Photo: Kimberly White/Getty Images
23andMe: Why bother with predictions about yourself when you are almost certainly average?
By Michael Brooks - 15 January 9:06

Want to understand your genes? Call your parents.

The Twitter logo and homepage. Photo: Getty Images
Troubles with Twitter: I’m glad I couldn’t tweet when I was an idiot
By Phil Hartup - 08 January 16:58

Twitter might be here to stay. Those block lists, those grudges, those bridges we burn – we could be stuck with them. And that is a sobering thought.

PETA, Ferguson, jihad, Doctor Who, rape, and kitten pics: the toxoplasma of online rage
By Scott Alexander - 08 January 12:37

A study of how anger on the internet is born, lives, and regenerates.

Frontiersmen: the 1962 US Mercury crew
The best of the NS in 2014: Science
By New Statesman - 23 December 18:36

Our best pieces from the past year. In this selection, the best articles about science.

Philae comes in to land on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. It reached the comet using carefully calculated forces of attraction. Image: 2014 European Space Agency/Getty
Wandering in the heavens: how mathematics explains Saturn’s rings
By Ian Stewart - 22 December 16:28

Ian Stewart shows how maths is changing cosmology, and explains why the best way to reach a comet near Mars is to go round the back of the sun.

Tuck in: a 1955 Christmas dinner. Photo: Getty
Why festive indulgence is good for you
By Michael Brooks - 22 December 15:11

What should you do to stay happy and healthy this Christmas? You’ll like the first piece of advice: if you want to relax, you could try eating a big meal.

The Bardarbunga volcano in south-east Iceland in September 2014. Photo: Bernard Meric/AFP/Getty Images
From Werner Herzog to Pompeii: the difficulties of capturing volcanoes in film
By Oliver Farry - 22 December 10:59

It is strange that the full terror of the volcano has rarely been harnessed for narrative purposes – most films about eruptions end up as camp disaster flicks.

© Luke Evans
Colour to dye for: how much do we really know about the risks of colouring our hair?
By Rebecca Guenard - 16 December 12:14

The basic chemistry of hair dyes has changed little over the last century, but what do we know about the risks of colouring our hair, and why do we do it?

A woman poses in front of photowall showing a fantasy library at the 2013 Frankfurt Book Fair. Photo: Thomas Lohnes/Getty
To build a fan base, it helps to know what it’s like to be a fan
By Elizabeth Minkel - 12 December 10:00

The online book world is about gathering around a book, or a love of books generally. If publishers want to capitalise on this, they would do well to promote authors who are fans themselves.

The Betatron, which was used in the treatment of cancer and other diseases. Photo: Getty
Protecting planet earth from killer electrons
By Michael Brooks - 11 December 9:37

Our planet has hidden life-protection systems that continue to surprise us.

Photo: Getty
Why we should resist antibiotics
By Michael Brooks - 10 December 18:01

Recent analysis of a bacterium that killed a First World War soldier showed that this bug was resistant to attacks by penicillin and erythromycin, even before we had discovered either of these antibiotic drugs. 

Dark skies: a view of the milky way during a meteor shower, Myanmar. Photo: Getty
Dark energy vs dark matter: a battle of two cosmic monsters
By Michael Brooks - 04 December 10:00

Michael Brooks’s Science Column.

Jeff Bezos poses on a lorry after handing over a two billion dollar cheque to Indian Vice President and Country Manager of Amazon.in, Amit Agarwal, in Bangalore. Photo: Manjunath Kiran/AFP/Getty
The party is over for Amazon
By Danny Vinik - 03 December 11:05

The retail giant was unstoppable – until this year. What happened?

Sangeang Api, a volcano off the coast of Sumbawa Island, Indonesia, as it erupted on May 30, 2014. Volcanic dust can cool the Earth. Image: Nasa
The problem with keeping the Earth cool with space mirrors and fake volcanic eruptions
By Ian Steadman - 01 December 11:46

Reflecting heat back into space, seeding the ocean with iron, simulating the effects of volcanic dust - the problem with thinking big about fixing the climate is that the massive risks are far more expensive than the known costs of simply not screwing the planet up in the first place.

Footballer Gavin Swankie (left), just one of the players whose every goal is recorded by the Whitehall fan. Photo: Getty Images
Who's the Whitehall civil servant spending hours each week editing footballers' Wikipedia pages?
By Ian Steadman - 27 November 15:59

Someone, somewhere in government, is spending a considerable amount of time keeping Wikipedia's entries on Scottish football up-to-date.

Powerful you have become: a 3D-printed model of Star Wars' Yoda. Photo: Getty
Made in space: Sending 3D printers into orbit
By Michael Brooks - 27 November 10:00

The ESA wants to test a 3D printer in orbit because this is likely to be the best place and method of building the equipment that will take us further out.

Sir Malcolm Rifkind, the head of the ISC, has said companies like Facebook offer terrorists a "safe haven". Photo: Getty Images
Making Facebook an arm of MI5 won't be a guarantee against terrorism
By Ian Steadman - 26 November 13:42

The security services want social networks like Facebook to be more forthcoming with material posted by users that might indicate a threat to national security. But the root causes of terrorism will never be fixed with data alone.

French Guiana's Amazonia region. What happens here affects the climate of the entire world. Photo: Jody Amiet/AFP/Getty
Martin Rees: The world in 2050 and beyond
By Martin Rees - 26 November 11:22

In today’s runaway world, we can’t aspire to leave a monument lasting 1,000 years, but it would surely be shameful if we persisted in policies that denied future generations a fair inheritance and left them with a more depleted and more hazardous world.

High voltage: Hinkley power stations near Bristol. Photo: Getty
Path of least resistance: the quest for room-temperature superconductors
By Michael Brooks - 20 November 10:00

Michael Brooks’s Science Column. 

Strange fish: Lake Malawi is home to some unique species. Photo: Getty
Genes are not as important as you might think
By Michael Brooks - 13 November 10:00

Michael Brooks’s Science Column. 

Collateral damage? Debris from Virgin Galactic's crashed SpaceShipTwo
Space incorporated: lessons from the deadly Virgin Galactic crash
By Ian Steadman - 13 November 10:00

Governments are setting their sights on missions to Mars and the moon but private companies are focused on shorter excursions into space. Their motivation is simple: there’s money in it.

Amanda Palmer at Glastonbury. Photo: Getty Images
Standing naked in front of an audience: Amanda Palmer and a new way to make art
By Cory Doctorow - 11 November 16:17

Cory Doctorow on the singer and performer Amanda Palmer's first book, "a manifesto and a confessional of an artist uniquely suited to her time and place".

Speeding ahead: the Lockheed stand at an aviation trade show in 2012. Photo: Getty
Forever 20 years away: will we ever have a working nuclear fusion reactor?
By Michael Brooks - 06 November 10:00

Lockheed Martin has announced that it already has a small-scale fusion energy generator. In ten years’ time, it says, it will have developed a reactor large enough to power a city and small enough to sit on the back of a truck.

Free capital: a winning design for one of Peter Thiel's floating cities. Image: Andras Gyorfi
Peter Thiel: we must stop fearing the future
By Ian Steadman - 30 October 12:35

The co-founder of PayPal, Facebook board member and hugely successful venture capitalist is disappointed in the future. He doesn’t think we’re ambitious enough.

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