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.

Hostile planet: Echus Chasma, one of the largest water source regions on Mars, is pictured from ESA's Mars Express. Photo: Getty
68 Days Later: why the Mars One mission would end in disaster
By Ian Steadman - 23 October 10:00

A team from MIT estimated how long it would take for the mission to experience its first fatality. The answer: 68 days. The second group would arrive to find the first pioneers had been dead for more than a year and a half.

A tyre washed up on the beach at Prestwick, Scotland. Photo: Getty
Meet the women sailing across oceans to understand what toxins are really doing to our bodies
By Caroline Criado-Perez - 22 October 16:21

The aim of the voyage, and the play inspired by it, is to make “the unseen seen” and enhance understanding of what the chemicals we put into the sea and our own bodies are actually doing.

Face off: Hong Kong residents wear Sars masks while watching a funeral procession. Photo: Getty
The plague index: which diseases could still cause chaos?
By Michael Barrett - 22 October 15:20

We defeated or tamed many fatal diseases in the 20th century but many remain a threat. Michael Barrett assesses the contenders for the next pandemic. 

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott(L) and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper laugh as they address the media during a joint press conference in Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canda on June 9, 2014. Photo: Getty Images
The world's worst climate change villains? Step forward, prime ministers of Australia and Canada
By Rebecca Leber - 21 October 15:08

These two world leaders are laughing while the world burns up - and they don't look like stopping any time soon.

A scientist looks at a blood sample. Photo: Getty
The man with the golden blood
By Penny Bailey - 21 October 11:22

Meet the donors, patients, doctors and scientists involved in the complex global network of rare – and very rare – blood.

Autumn rain: being damp is inferred rather than truly felt. Photo: Getty
On our nerves: what makes us itch or feel wet?
By Michael Brooks - 16 October 10:00

Michael Brooks’s science column. 

Lovely grub: are insects the future of food?
By Emily Anthes - 15 October 10:26

Emily Anthes braves locusts, beetles, mealworms and more as she asks whether eating insects is the answer to feeding ever more humans and livestock.

An 1899 illustration for H G Wells’ “When the Sleeper Wakes”. Image: Hulton Archive / Stringer / Getty Images
Can science fiction writers predict trends in technology’s future?
By Peter F Hamilton - 13 October 13:32

From Arthur C Clarke’s “Extra Terrestrial Relays” (now called satellites) to H G Wells’ “ironclads” (tanks), science fiction writers have form when it comes to pre-empting the future of technology.

Free again: Doctorow signals the danger of states pushing tech boundaries. Photo: Rex/Will Ireland/Future Publishing
Betrayed by your smartphone: Cory Doctorow on the future of internet censorship
By Ian Steadman - 09 October 10:00

“Information doesn’t want to be free,” writes the sci-fi novelist and activist Cory Doctorow, “people want to be free.”

Hope injection: women with their pets at a rabies vaccination centre in India. Photo: Noah Seelam/AFP/Getty Images
Preventing rabies: the dog jabs that can save humans
By Michael Brooks - 09 October 10:00

Responsibility for treatment of infected people falls on human health services. It is difficult to create an alliance against rabies until animal and human health experts co-ordinate.

The High Line in New York. Photo: Getty
New York’s High Line was the city planner’s Holy Grail. SkyCycle could be the answer for London
By Ed Smith - 03 October 9:10

London may be better served by embracing a different transport infrastructure project, one that follows the High Line principle of transforming what is already there.

Workers on Crossrail breakthrough into the Whitechapel station which forms part of the Crossrail network on April 04, 2014 in London, England. Photo: Getty Images
Britain needs to stop discouraging women from choosing engineering as a career
By Fiona Rutherford - 02 October 17:47

A new report suggests that women are lost to a potential career in engineering at the age of 16, when A-level and vocational subject choices are made – More needs to be done to challenge society’s clichéd attitudes and expectations of “masculine” and “feminine” career paths.

The implications of this research is profound. Photo: Getty
Is it a man or a mouse?
By Michael Brooks - 02 October 9:00

Scientists have a simple recipe for creating a more human-like mouse: just alter its DNA very slightly.

Illustration: Darrel Rees/Heart
Apocalypse soon: the scientists preparing for the end times
By Sophie McBain - 25 September 11:00

A growing community of scientists, philosophers and tech billionaires believe we need to start thinking seriously about the threat of human extinction.

Plumb role: actors dressed as Nintendo characters Super Mario and Luigi in Chiba, Tokyo, August 2014. Photo: Getty
The most influential tech company you’ve never heard of
By Philip Maughan - 25 September 10:00

The scientists and engineers at “Alca-Loo”– as it is known among financiers – think of themselves as “the plumbers of the internet world”.

ISRO’s successful mission control room. Photo: EPA
Billion people hold their breath as India becomes the first Asian country to reach Mars
By John Bridges - 24 September 11:52

Mars has become the destination of choice for ambitious space agencies and nations. Now India is among that group.

Not that kind of fishing. Photo: Getty
The psychology of phishing: why do we fall for terrible email scams?
By Emma Woollacott - 23 September 12:36

New research suggests that it isn’t the technologically illiterate who fall for the promise of a legacy from a Nigerian prince – the more you use Facebook, the more likely you are to click that link.

A scientist looks for microbiological pathogens in samples of water. (Photo credit Patrick Kovarik /AFP/GettyImages)
Science journal Nature Communications joins the open access movement
By Fiona Rutherford - 23 September 9:41

Nature Communications will be the first Nature-branded open access-only journal - a huge step in the right direction for the progression of scientific communication.

Part of a new permanent exhibition at the Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie in Paris dedicated to the human brain. Photo: Getty
How it is possible to live fairly normally with half your brain missing
By Michael Brooks - 22 September 11:10

Chinese researchers have recently reported a case of a woman found to have no cerebellum, a part of the brain that usually contains half of its neurons.

Staffs at Ainsworth Pharmacy make up homeopathic remedies (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
It's unscientific for a medical regulatory body to give accreditation to homeopaths
By Fiona Rutherford - 18 September 17:12

Homeopaths can now get their "medicine" accredited by an official regulatory body, to the dismay of critics.

A row of traditional American mailboxes. Photo: Andrew Taylor/Flickr
Reprivatising the internet: how physics helps you hide from spooks
By Michael Brooks - 18 September 10:00

Tim Berners-Lee has publicly called for programmers to develop better, more user-friendly cryptography. That way, he says, we can all get back to living private lives again.

How many bricks would it take to build a Lego bridge connecting London to New York?
By Randall Munroe - 17 September 12:30

An extract from What If? Serious scientific answers to absurd hypothetical questions by Randall Munroe, the creator of the wonderful web comic xkcd.

Starry, starry night: the Perseid meteor shower seen from Burma, 2013. Photo: Getty
Pleiades row: the fault in our star measurements
By Michael Brooks - 11 September 10:00

Either our understanding of how stars form needs a big overhaul, or one of the current missions of the European Space Agency could turn out to be something of a white elephant.

Newly-discovered dinosaur is the biggest land animal found so far
By Fiona Rutherford - 05 September 13:57

Dreadnoughtus schrani, which walked the earth 77 million years ago, is the largest land animal ever known – dwarfing such monsters as Diplodocus and Tyrranosaurus Rex.

The Sun, seen from the International Space Station. Photo: STS-129/Nasa
The curious case of space plankton
By Ian Steadman - 04 September 9:29

It’s increasingly becoming clear that space is a more hospitable environment than was assumed.

A Eurasian jay picks at a nut in northeastern Germany. Photo: Getty
Jay joy: what it feels like for a bird
By Michael Brooks - 02 September 17:00

Attributing emotions to birds is not a flight of fancy. Emotions are a feature of evolution: they arose to help creatures navigate the world safely and with maximum reward.

The logo of Apple's iCloud service, which is suspected to be at the centre of the celebrity image leak scandal. Image: Apple
The iCloud leak: weak security isn't only a problem for Apple's backup service
By Lauren Razavi - 02 September 15:11

Apple's cloud backup service, iCloud, has emerged as a likely weak link in the leaking of personal photographs of celebrities this week - but with online security, there are many possible ways for sensitive personal information to leak.

Crushed by the wheels of industry: critics increasingly see new tech as one of the free market's most dangerous tools of oppression. Image: Ikon Images
The new Luddites: why former digital prophets are turning against tech
By Bryan Appleyard - 29 August 15:18

Neo-Luddism began to emerge in the postwar period. First after the emergence of nuclear weapons, and secondly when it became apparent new computer technologies had the power to change our lives completely.

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