Since 1958, researchers have been measuring the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere at the Mauna Loa Observatory. The remote outpost has just reported a carbon dioxide level of 400 parts per million — the highest it has climbed in the modern age.
To test a common theory about the cause of autism, researchers recently studied how kids with autism process moving images. They found that the kids saw simple movements twice as fast as their typically developing peers.
The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has crossed the "psychological threshold" of 400 parts per million. That number is one of the clearest measures of how humans are changing the planet by burning fossil fuels.
Sam Penix and Sam Lewontin, of Everyman Espresso in New York City, and Harold McGee, author of On Food and Cooking, explain how to get the most out of your grounds. The brewmasters discuss brewing devices, from wood necks to chemex, and filter out reasons you might choose one over another.
Saul Perlmutter shared the 2011 Nobel Prize in physics for his discovery that the universe was expanding at an accelerating rate. Perlmutter explains how supernovae and other astronomical artifacts are used to measure the expansion rate, and explains what physicists are learning about "dark energy" — the mysterious entity thought to be driving the acceleration.
How long can you go without checking email, or glancing at your smartphone? Clifford Nass, a psychology professor at Stanford University, says today's nonstop multitasking actually wastes more time than it saves--and he says there's evidence it may be killing our concentration and creativity too.
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