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Anecdotes from the Archive

Air Defenses Against Zeppelins, 1915


Reported in Scientific American, This Week in World War I: February 13, 1915 German Zeppelins (airships with rigid frames) bombed Liège, Belgium, on August 6, 1914, only a few days after the Great War broke out. Over the next few weeks, Zeppelins carried out raids throughout Europe on military and civilian targets. The actual damage [...]

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Image of the Week

A Modest Mussel Is Making Waves


Image: A mussel shell engraved by Homo erectus between 540,000 and 430,000 years ago Credit: Wim Lustenhouwer, VU University Amsterdam Source: Kate Wong’s World’s Oldest Engraving Upends Theory of Homo sapiens Uniqueness on Observations These scratches may not look like much but they predate the existence of our species, Homo sapiens, and upend any claim [...]

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Plugged In

Will oil companies become carbon capture ones?

Credit: Mississippi Power

I pose this question in the larger context of “how we will get from here to there” (that is, from a carbon-intensive economy to a more efficient, low-carbon intensity economy). Recognizing that carbon capture and sequestration will likely be one of many approaches to staying within our carbon budget, we should look at the potential [...]

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Crab Moves in Under Chrysler Building; Refuses to Budge


Japanese artist Aki Inomata created a series of 3D-printed hermit crab homes after learning that the land under the French Embassy in Tokyo changed from being French to being Japanese in 2009 and would subsequently change back in 2059. The exchange reminded her of a hermit crab changing its shell and so she set out [...]

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