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History of science


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Astronomy Biology Biotechnology Chemistry Computing and artificial intelligence Cosmology Deep time Earth science and climate Ecology and environmental sciences Engineering Evolution Genetics History of science Human evolution Human reproduction Illness and disease Mathematics Medicine Oceans and water Palaeontology Physics Quantum theory Space exploration
Essay/
History of science
How to make mountains

In living memory, geologists believed that the Earth was slowly shrivelling, little guessing how vibrantly alive it truly is

Marcia Bjornerud

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Philosophy of science
Getting it right

Truth is neither absolute nor timeless. But the pursuit of truth remains at the heart of the scientific endeavour

Michela Massimi

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Human evolution
The hunt for human nature

We still live in the long shadow of Man-the-Hunter: a midcentury theory of human origins soaked in strife and violence

Erika Lorraine Milam

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History of science
A history of monsters

Monsters once inhabited the mysterious fringes of the known world. In our human-dominated present, can they still be found?

Natalie Lawrence

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History of science
Mathematics as thought

Mathematical ideas are some of the most transformative and beautiful in history. So why do they get so little attention?

Mordechai Levy-Eichel

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Physics
Through two doors

How a sunbeam split in two became physics’ most elegant experiment, shedding light on the underlying nature of reality

Anil Ananthaswamy

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History of science
Forging Islamic science

Fake miniatures depicting Islamic science have found their way into the most august of libraries and history books. How?

Nir Shafir

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Human reproduction
The macho sperm myth

The idea that millions of sperm are on an Olympian race to reach the egg is yet another male fantasy of human reproduction

Robert D Martin

Essay/
History of science
Alive and ticking

The idea that nature is a humming, complex, clockwork machine has been around for centuries. Is it due for a revival?

Jessica Riskin

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Stories and literature
Sweet artifice

Dandies in the age of decadence favoured synthetics over nature, nowhere more so than in perfumery’s fabulous counterfeits

Catherine Maxwell

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Human rights and justice
Truth is also a place

Throughout history, people found truth at holy places. Now we build courts, labs and altars to be truth spots too

Thomas Gieryn

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Mathematics
The chords of the universe

It’s no surprise that mathematics has influenced music. But did you know that the influence goes both ways?

Eli Maor