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How AI Can Help Us Understand the World—Or Radically Misinterpret It
story
artificial intelligence

How AI Can Help Us Understand the World—Or Radically Misinterpret It

For the first time, neural networks are imagining things they've never seen before.
December 13, 2017
The Regional Scent Dialects That Help Otters Tell Friends From Strangers
story
otters

The Regional Scent Dialects That Help Otters Tell Friends From Strangers

You can learn a lot about someone from their accent.
December 13, 2017
A Six-Foot, 220-Pound Penguin Once Lived in New Zealand
story
penguins

A Six-Foot, 220-Pound Penguin Once Lived in New Zealand

The bird was almost twice the size of the largest living penguin.
December 12, 2017
Can an Anonymous Buyer Save a German Village on Its Last Legs?
story
abandoned

Can an Anonymous Buyer Save a German Village on Its Last Legs?

For the tiny hamlet of Alwine, one bid stands between it and ruin.
December 11, 2017
A 16th-Century Book on Forest Laws Had Alarming Rules About Dogs
story
dogs

A 16th-Century Book on Forest Laws Had Alarming Rules About Dogs

"Who may keepe dogges within a forrest?"
December 08, 2017
The Whistled 'Bird Language' of Turkey May Be Lost Forever
story
unesco

The Whistled 'Bird Language' of Turkey May Be Lost Forever

Mobile phones are putting this ancient form of communication at risk.
December 08, 2017
How the 18th-Century Gay Bar Survived and Thrived in a Deadly Environment
story
lgbt

How the 18th-Century Gay Bar Survived and Thrived in a Deadly Environment

Welcome to the molly house.
December 08, 2017
The Traditional Pizza Making of Naples Now Has Heritage Status
Gastro Obscura
story
italy

The Traditional Pizza Making of Naples Now Has Heritage Status

Good news for Neapolitans, however you slice it.
December 07, 2017
What Is It Like to Be a Bee?
story
philosophy

What Is It Like to Be a Bee?

A philosophical and neurobiological look into the apian mind.
December 06, 2017
Misery Doesn't Seem to Improve the Quality of Art
story
art

Misery Doesn't Seem to Improve the Quality of Art

Under scrutiny, the image of the tortured genius appears to fall apart.
December 06, 2017
Demystifying the Changes to Bears Ears National Monument
story
national monument

Demystifying the Changes to Bears Ears National Monument

The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
December 05, 2017
The Little Death of the Adult Movie Theater
story
pornography

The Little Death of the Adult Movie Theater

The final erotic cinema in Paris is closing its doors after over 40 years.
December 04, 2017
The Pioneering Woodblock Artist Caught Between East and West
story
tradition

The Pioneering Woodblock Artist Caught Between East and West

The many contradictions of Lilian May Miller, the diplomat's daughter who wanted all her work destroyed.
December 01, 2017
How a Flipped-Over Giant Tortoise Gets Its Feet Back on the Ground
story
tortoises

How a Flipped-Over Giant Tortoise Gets Its Feet Back on the Ground

And why some find it harder than others.
December 01, 2017
Using a Particle Accelerator to See Inside a 1,900-Year-Old Mummy
story
egypt

Using a Particle Accelerator to See Inside a 1,900-Year-Old Mummy

We've come a long way from 19th-century mummy "unwrapping parties."
November 30, 2017
See a 94-Year-Old Sphinx Emerge From Californian Sand Dunes
story
place news

See a 94-Year-Old Sphinx Emerge From Californian Sand Dunes

A true relic of another age, when extravagant, overwrought blockbusters ruled the cineplex. Oh, wait.
November 29, 2017
The Lazy Zeppelins and Breakneck Boeings of the Shark World
story
zeppelins

The Lazy Zeppelins and Breakneck Boeings of the Shark World

Aircraft make surprisingly good analogues for the variety of sharks out there.
November 28, 2017
Care for a Taste of the World's First Tofu-Based Alcoholic Beverage?
Gastro Obscura
story
fermentation

Care for a Taste of the World's First Tofu-Based Alcoholic Beverage?

Finally, you can get loaded on soybeans.
November 27, 2017
The Rise and Fall of the Leeches Who Could Predict the Weather
story
leeches

The Rise and Fall of the Leeches Who Could Predict the Weather

In Victorian England, was there anything leeches couldn't do?
November 27, 2017
The Struggle to Revive the Lost Native Language of Thanksgiving
story
thanksgiving

The Struggle to Revive the Lost Native Language of Thanksgiving

Sometimes it is not easy to fulfill a prophecy.
November 22, 2017
Why America's Thanksgiving Turkey Is So Boring
Gastro Obscura
story
turkey

Why America's Thanksgiving Turkey Is So Boring

The bland appeal of the Broad Breasted White.
November 22, 2017
The Secret to Dolphin Seduction Is the Gift of a Large Marine Sponge
story
dolphins

The Secret to Dolphin Seduction Is the Gift of a Large Marine Sponge

Update your holiday wishlist accordingly.
November 21, 2017
The Spanish Nuns in Hot Water for an 'Unauthorized' Organ Refurbishment
story
religion

The Spanish Nuns in Hot Water for an 'Unauthorized' Organ Refurbishment

$170,000 for repairs or a $200,000 fine. Choose wisely.
November 20, 2017
The Savvy Marketing That Put Marshmallows on Your Sweet Potato Casserole
Gastro Obscura
story
marshmallow

The Savvy Marketing That Put Marshmallows on Your Sweet Potato Casserole

"I’ll have it with my Roast … and again for dessert."
November 20, 2017