I'm curious what sorts of future events you had in mind, following on from this balloon release, if it had unfolded closer to the original plan. In other words, say this event had not, in fact, gone sour, and that the balloons had successfully drifted out over the midwest without coming back down to clog the city—what… » 4/22/14 5:35pm Yesterday 5:35pm

Using Plastic Surgery To Keep Astronauts Human On Long Space Missions

A brief exchange in the back of last week's issue of New Scientist asks: "I understand that the lines and sagging skin we acquire as we age are due to the sun and gravity. If I lived in a space station in zero or microgravity away from the sun, would I stay looking young?" A perfectly innocuous, if even somewhat boring,… » 4/21/14 5:41pm Monday 5:41pm

This Huge Nuclear Waste Dump Will Be Washed Away By Rising Sea Levels

A dumping ground for nuclear waste located near the British coast is "virtually certain" to be washed away by rising sea levels, a new report warns. The UK Environment Agency has admitted that constructing the Drigg Low-Level Waste Repository so near the coast was a mistake, and that one million cubic meters of nuclear… » 4/21/14 9:41am Monday 9:41am

General Mills Comes to its Senses, Reverses Legal Policy on "Likes"

General Mills has come to its senses, reversing its very recent and instantly unpopular attempt to punish customers who have liked it on Facebook or downloaded and used digital coupons. The original idea had been to force customers who have benefited from the cereal giant's online generosity to give up their legal… » 4/20/14 7:32pm Sunday 7:32pm

Deepsea Minerals Are Coming Soon To A Cell Phone Near You

Rocks mined from the seafloor have been confirmed as a viable source for rare earth metals, and thus a tiny piece of the ocean might soon find its way into a cell phone or computer chipboard near you. The finding, published in the April 2014 issue of Applied Geochemistry, all but guarantees a new round of focus on… » 4/18/14 12:00pm Friday 12:00pm

Electric Lights Are Too Expensive—Why Not Brighten The Moon?

Think of all the power it takes to light up empty parking lots at night. Think of how annoying it can be when the sun goes down, yet you didn't finish all your work for the day. Think of how great it would be if we could just extend daytime, reduce the cost of lighting up all those empty streets and garages, and keep… » 4/16/14 5:40pm 4/16/14 5:40pm

Jump a turnstile on the subway. Go into Manhattan, run outside, and hail a cab. Take it to the nearest heliport, then leap out without paying. Steal a helicopter. Fly up over the Empire State Building and attach cables somehow to the 2015 Ford Mustang. Where are the cables from? Who's flying the chopper while you… » 4/16/14 9:27am 4/16/14 9:27am