Articles from 02/2010

  • Stranger than Fiction

    There's no shortage of movies that play fast and loose with the laws of nature. One scientist is on a mission to fix these flaws, but will it really improve scientific literacy?

  • The Pre-Electric Slide

    In the mid-1800s, hobbyists’ microscopes and slides took up a place beside the piano in the parlor. Explore a selection of antique slides of remarkable precision and beauty.

  • Sentient Slime?

    Slime molds form patterns similar to rail and road networks, and bacteria organize slimy scouting parties and move in groups. Is there such a thing as microbial intelligence?

  • Mosquito Noses and Baby Brains

    In this week's Findings Log, we examine new research that studies mosquitoes' sense of smell, bilingual babies, brain-computer interfaces, and more.

  • The Stunning Diversity of Plants

    Kirsten Bomblies, MacArthur genius and Harvard biology professor, answers our 10 questions, discussing the immune system of plants and how young scientists can keep inspiration alive.

  • Zero-Sum Game

    With two power-players—Bill Gates and Barack Obama—placing their bets on nuclear energy, another round of debate begins over its place in a carbon-free future.

  • A Battle at Midway

    We talk with photographer Chris Jordan, who recently traveled to a remote part of the Pacific Ocean to document effects of the world’s largest known mass of garbage.

  • Appetite for Destruction

    Chris Jordan traveled to a remote area of the Pacific and returned with snapshots of a burgeoning ecological crisis, from the belly of the world’s largest garbage pile.

  • The Evolution of Illumination

    Researchers are now uncovering how—and why—bioluminescent organisms evolved the ability to glow.

  • Urban Resilience

    Merging complex systems science and ecology, resilience scientists have broken new ground on understanding—and preserving—natural ecosystems. Now, as more and more people move into urban hubs, they are bringing this novel science to the city.

  • Yellow, Black, and Blues

    A look at our agricultural past may explain why honey bees around the world began disappearing three years ago.

  • Getting Snowed

    As major storms cover the northeast, the classic canard of conflating climate with weather takes on ridiculous new forms. But is it better to fight or ignore them?

  • The Age of Impossible Numbers

    In Running the Numbers, photographer Chris Jordan attempts to convey the vastness of modern consumption with clever visualizations.

  • Incredible Journeys

    Some animals can instinctively solve navigational problems that have baffled humans for centuries. Now, researchers are uncovering how.

  • The Matthew Effect

    When it comes to scientific publishing and fame, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. How can we break this feedback loop?

  • Illuminating Dark Economies

    Measuring economic activity from outer space is a new frontier in the struggle to quantify humanity’s impact on the natural world.

  • Star Crossed

    With the announcement of the new budget, the Constellation program’s loss is many other agencies' gain. Meanwhile, Iran sends some critters into orbit.

  • The Science of Stuff

    A visual tour of the colorful, the strange, and the super-strong in the Material ConneXion library, where new forms of cloth, concrete, metal, and more line the walls.

  • Living in a Material World

    Scientists and designers join forces at an unusual consultancy, bringing technical savvy to assist anyone in search of the right material—from faux fur to green concrete.

  • Battle of the Viral Mutations

    Viruses like H1N1 and HIV are hard for biomedical researchers to tackle because they mutate so readily. Will scientists uncover new treatments before the viruses adapt again?

  • Many Minds, One Story

    Virginia Woolf’s mental illness may have ultimately defined her craft—one that rejected convention in a decades-long attempt to portray the very character of consciousness.

  • Books to Read Now

    February releases explore the annals of piracy; delve into the subculture of anti-aging zealots; and reveal the fraught history of the most famous cell line in science.


  • 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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