Articles from 04/2009

  • Will the Future Be Geoengineered?

    Five experts debate engineering the climate, how it would be governed, and the ways we're doing it already.

  • America + China = The New G2

    Why progress on climate change hinges on our relationship with just one nation: China.

  • Books to Read Now

    May releases on how cooking helped us evolve, the fallout from physics’ greatest fraud, the social science of extremism, and more.

  • Energy for Nothing, Carbs for Free

    When we push athletes to their limits in the lab, we’re learning that their brains give up before their muscles do. Is fatigue really just all in our heads?

  • Breakdown: The New PCAST

    With climate change, an obsolete energy policy, technology that's reshaping the economy, and burgeoning health threats, there will be no dull moments for the new science team.

  • A Historic Commitment to Science

    President Obama announced he will invest in “the largest commitment to scientific research and innovation in American history,” including new energy and science education initiatives.

  • Case Study: Troubles in Kenya

    On the eastern coast of Kenya, controversy erupts over plans to turn a biodiversity hotspot into farmland for Qatar.

  • Hungry for Land

    Growing food in foreign lands has a long history. But the 21st century version of outsourced agriculture presages something fundamentally new.

  • The Parasite Puzzle

    How one of Africa’s deadliest pathogens uses on-the-fly, genetic costume changes to outsmart our immune system.

  • Week in Review: April 24

    Fire bombings over animal research, Jim Carrey and the anti-vaccine movement, fossil of walking seal discovered, senator proposes science envoys, and transcription mapped.

  • The Green Collar Solution?

    Will efforts to jumpstart the economy — even ostensibly green ones — collide with efforts to save the planet?

  • Once Out of Nature

    Isabella Kirkland’s life-size paintings of exotic, recently discovered species capture a world caught between the joys of discovery and the threat of imminent loss.

  • First Light

    Kepler is looking at the radiant clouds of stars clumped thickly along the plane of the Milky Way, increasing the mission’s chances of detecting planets.

  • Climate Change in High Definition

    Earth the movie opens today in the US, 7 years since the Planet Earth franchise first started production. Has the footage become a chronicle of an already vanished world?

  • Why Environmentalism Needs High Finance

    Conservationists may wish money were no object, but if nature is to survive, economic incentives and biological imperatives must align.

  • How We Saved the Ozone Layer

    Modeling climate in our past, present, and future worlds.

  • The Last Experiment

    It’s up to social science to make us act in an environmentally conscious way. But can we trick ourselves into saving ourselves?

  • Ear to the Ground

    Natural quiet is a rapidly disappearing resource. But if you travel far enough, and listen carefully, you can still find it.

  • This Is Your Brain on Facebook

    Recent studies on the effects of the internet and other new media on brain plasticity raises an open research question: Is Google making us smarter?

  • The Achilles’ Heel of Aging

    Understanding the biological basis of senescence may allow us to delay or prevent the degenerative declines long accepted as an inevitable part of getting older.

  • Week in Review: April 17

    The EPA’s carbon dioxide mission, cutbacks in science funding in the UK and Ireland, thoughts on the AlloSphere, and John Maddox, RIP.

  • The Synesthesia Census

    Author and synesthesia expert David Eagleman on subjective realities, the genes behind mixed sensory experiences, and taking stock of the condition that everyone wants.

  • Running on Water

    Scientists look to the efficiency of nature to solve one of the biggest challenges in sustainably producing hydrogen fuel.

  • The Anthrax Agenda

    Eight years into an investigation that has consumed millions of dollars, some scientists and legislators remain unconvinced that the FBI's case is closed.

  • The Hive Mind

    Is understanding the selfless behavior of ants, bees, and wasps the key to a new evolutionary synthesis?

  • The Body Politic

    The deep symbiosis between bacteria and their human hosts is forcing scientists to ask: Are we organisms or living ecosystems?

  • Banking the Monsoon

    In a small village in the center of Gujarat, India, a society grows from clean water and satellite maps.

  • Tissue-Engineered Art

    MoMA design and architecture curator Paola Antonelli guides us through experimental designs that are both manufactured and living, and which test both our aesthetic and ethical sensibilities.

  • Growing the Tangled Bank

    Darwin is best known for natural selection, but he saw the power of chance and development, too.

  • The Unraveling of Homogeny

    Testing mice as individuals instead of one and the same may cut down on experimental errors and lead to significantly cheaper, more efficient drug testing.

  • Protein Power

    With recent advances in bioengineering, scientists are designing novel proteins from scratch that perform some of biology's most powerful functions.

  • How to Reign Indefinitely

    An unusual form of asexual reproduction by a Japanese species of termite raises the question: What is the value of sex?

  • The Harsh Realities of Energy

    There is no faster, easier fix for America’s energy crisis than to simply begin living within rational limits.

  • I Am a Rat and So Are You

    Humans and the domesticated lab rat share DNA, a history, and increasingly, their fates.

  • Half-life

    Artist Alexis Rockman’s latest exhibit portrays a psychedelic, posthuman natural world where our failings ultimately inspire us.

  • Automatic for the People

    A team of British researchers take a robotic approach in rethinking the hypothetico-deductive method.

  • After the Fall

    Alexis Rockman’s latest exhibit portrays a psychedelic, posthuman natural world where our failings horrify but ultimately inspire us.

  • Science Hopes at the G20

    Green investment by the G20 as part of an economic stimulus package could create jobs and address the economic and environmental threats of climate change.

  • Getting Over It

    Forget about erasing bad memories. Researchers have located the receptor that enables our brains to override or “unlearn” traumatic past experiences.

  • Wave of Generation

    The recent detection of a bizarre, high-energy wave could put to rest one of the most vexing puzzles in astrophysics.

  • April Book Picks

    New works on the human cost of fear, the paradigm-shifting astronomer Edwin Hubble, and the comic failings of religious fundamentalists.


  • Ideas

    I Tried Almost Everything Else

    John Rinn, snowboarder, skateboarder, and “genomic origamist,” on why we should dumpster-dive in our genomes and the inspiration of a middle-distance runner.

  • Ideas

    Going, Going, Gone

    The second most common element in the universe is increasingly rare on Earth—except, for now, in America.

  • Ideas

    Earth-like Planets Aren’t Rare

    Renowned planetary scientist James Kasting on the odds of finding another Earth-like planet and the power of science fiction.

The Seed Salon

Video: conversations with leading scientists and thinkers on fundamental issues and ideas at the edge of science and culture.

Are We Beyond the Two Cultures?

Video: Seed revisits the questions C.P. Snow raised about science and the humanities 50 years by asking six great thinkers, Where are we now?

Saved by Science

Audio slideshow: Justine Cooper's large-format photographs of the collections behind the walls of the American Museum of Natural History.

The Universe in 2009

In 2009, we are celebrating curiosity and creativity with a dynamic look at the very best ideas that give us reason for optimism.

Revolutionary Minds
The Interpreters

In this installment of Revolutionary Minds, five people who use the new tools of science to educate, illuminate, and engage.

The Seed Design Series

Leading scientists, designers, and architects on ideas like the personal genome, brain visualization, generative architecture, and collective design.

The Seed State of Science

Seed examines the radical changes within science itself by assessing the evolving role of scientists and the shifting dimensions of scientific practice.

A Place for Science

On the trail of the haunts, homes, and posts of knowledge, from the laboratory to the field.


Witness the science. Stunning photographic portfolios from the pages of Seed magazine.

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