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Can Smart Phones Help Create Smarter Science?

Can smart phones change the way we do research? Cognitive scientists believe that they may provide a vital means of widening the participant pool, as discussed in a recent September PLoS paper that explores the intersection of technology and behavioral experiments.The potential application of Internet-based research to extend laboratory exercises to wider audiences has been a tantalizingly frustrating endeavor...

November 7, 2011 — Krystal D'Costa

What Good Is The Lytro Light-Field Camera?

I've been trying, unsuccessfully, to get my hands on a demo model of Lytro's new and purportedly revolutionary light-field camera. This is a camera whose sensor records the direction of incoming light in addition to its intensity and color, allowing the camera to "see" over a broad focal depth...

November 6, 2011 — Alex Wild

Oil Pipeline Protesters Surround the White House Today

Some people, like Joe Romm, want more coverage on climate change. For me, climate change is one of those subjects that I actually try to ignore. I am often silently thankful that I do not have to stare at a headline about one of the most crushing subjects of our time in the morning...

November 6, 2011 — Jennifer Jacquet

The Cosmic Magnifying Lens

The observable universe is one big, giant magnifying lens.At large distances, objects appear to be larger than their true size, and the farther they are, the bigger they look.

November 6, 2011 — Davide Castelvecchi

A farewell to Labwork …

Dear Labwork, We need to talk. I don’t think this will come as a surprise. I think you’ve noticed a difference in me, Labwork, and in my attitude towards you.

November 6, 2011 — S.E. Gould

Fill Flash Balances Foreground with Backdrop

Here's a simple image of a bug on a branch:Appearances aside, producing this image was technically more challenging than my usual fare. Both the sky and the insect are properly exposed, meaning I essentially had to plan and meter for two photographs in one exposure.Consider the scene with only natural sunlight and the camera metered for the sky:To correct for the dark, underexposed bug I added foreground light in the form of a diffused radio-triggered flash...

November 5, 2011 — Alex Wild

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The Essential Guide to the Modern World

The Essential Guide to the Modern World