Tech

Why a Grape Turns Into a Fireball in a Microwave

February 18, 2019

The internet is full of videos of thoughtful people setting things on fire. Here’s a perennial favorite: Cleave a grape in half, leaving a little skin connecting the two hemispheres. Blitz it in the microwave for five seconds. For one glorious moment, the grape halves will produce a fireball unfit for domestic life. Physicist Stephen […]

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The Great White Shark Genome Is Here—Superpowers and All

February 18, 2019

Is there any more daunting animal to study than the great white shark? Just you try attaching a radio transmitter or drawing a tube of blood from a two-ton, razor-toothed, meat-seeking missile. But scientific understanding of these iconic apex predators has been limited by technical challenges as much as human bias for studying species that […]

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Star Wars News: Is ‘Episode IX’ Called ‘Balance of the Force’?

February 18, 2019

Following a down period for rumormongering around December’s Star Wars: Episode IX, things have really picked up in the last couple of weeks. Now all kinds of potential plot points, costume designs, and even maybe-possibly-kinda movie titles are being thrown around with wild abandon. Fans won’t know for sure until the end of the year, […]

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NATO Group Catfished Soldiers to Prove a Point About Privacy

February 18, 2019

The phony Facebook pages looked just like the real thing. They were designed to mimic pages that service members use to connect. One appeared to be geared toward a large-scale, military exercise in Europe and was populated by a handful of accounts that appeared to be real service members. In reality, both the pages and […]

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10 Best Cheap Headphones and Earbuds for 2019 (Under $100)

February 18, 2019

Both of Jaybird’s latest sub-$100 headphones, the Tarah and the X4, are excellent, durable, long-lived workout buds with fantastic sound quality. But if you don’t need the X4’s special, squishy Comply foam ear tips, the Tarah has everything you need at a sweet price point—and they’re currently quite affordable. My coworker Adrienne So liked the […]

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In Defense of Videogame Selfies (Yes, Really)

February 18, 2019

For all their crustiness about new features, videogame fans seem to have enthusiastically endorsed one particular Newfangled Idea: selfies. Last year, the joyous Spider-Man allowed players to turn Peter Parker’s lens on himself, with Spidey throwing peace signs or boastful jumps depending on where the shot was taken.1 Meme fodder, no question; also, as it […]

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38 Best President’s Day Sales on Laptops, TVs, Gear (2019)

February 18, 2019

This weekend is Presidents’ Day. Maybe you’ve chosen to spend the day contemplating the long history of our nation’s highest office, or maybe you’re taking advantage of the long weekend to get out of town. If you find yourself with some free time, we’ve rounded up more than two dozen of our favorite deals from […]

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Jargon Watch: What ‘Roadmanship’ Means to a Self-Driving Car

February 18, 2019

Roadmanship n. A proposed safety standard for self-driving cars, based on the road etiquette of humans. In 1909, when horseless carriages were all the rage, a magazine called Country Life in America advised new drivers on “the ­ethics of good roadmanship.” Motorists, it urged, should go slow to avoid spooking the animals pulling other vehicles. […]

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The Imperfect Truth About Finding Facts in a World of Fakes

February 18, 2019

In the summer of 2006, Fidel Castro unexpectedly announced that he was temporarily handing over power to his brother. Turns out he needed to undergo intestinal surgery. Afterward, an anchor on state-run television read a statement, said to have been written by Castro, attesting that all was well. But there were no photographs of Fidel […]

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The Best Gear for the E-Scooter Commuter

February 18, 2019

Chances are e-scooters have landed on a sidewalk near you. Gear up, hop on, and brave the urban grid. 1. OluKai Waialua Lace An active commute doesn’t mean you have to look like you’re going to the gym. These office-friendly sneaks are made from lightweight mesh and rubber, with a seaweed-inspired tread that’ll help you […]

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