What if you put all 7 billion humans into one city, a city as dense as New York, with its towers and skyscrapers? How big would that 7 billion-sized city be? As big as New Jersey? Texas? Bigger? Are cities protecting wild spaces on the planet? We try a little experiment to find out.
Springtime means bug time. Michael Raupp, professor of entomology at the University of Maryland has the story of a big brood of cicadas that is set to emerge up and down the East Coast. We can also expect the largest infestation of stink bugs this year. USDA entomologist Tracy Leskey tells guest host Jacki Lyden about the bugs and efforts to stop them.
This week President Obama announced his BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) Initiative, which the White House describes as "a bold new research effort to revolutionize our understanding of the human mind." National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins describes the new research plan.
In his new book Drunk Tank Pink Adam Alter, an assistant professor of psychology and marketing at NYU, explains how subtle cues, such as the sound of someone's name or the color of a room, can influence behaviors and thoughts. Alter discusses the book, and his research on the psychology of decision-making.
After a winter that many beekeepers have described as particularly hard on their hives, Eric Mussen, extension apiculturist at the University of California, discusses the plight of the modern honeybee and the threats the tiny pollinators face from disease and pesticides.
In The Bonobo and the Atheist: In Search of Humanism Among the Primates, primatologist Frans de Waal explores traits like empathy and fairness in our closest relatives, bonobos and chimpanzees, and argues that human morality is not the product of rational thought or religion, but evolved long ago.
Reporting in Science, Gabriel Villar and colleagues have turned tiny water droplets into cooperating networks that can pass electrical signals and do mechanical work. Villar says that in theory, water droplet networks could be used as artificial tissues.
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