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‘Even if you’re a tough person you can’t avoid becoming a child again…’
In this video composed of time-lapse imagery recorded from the International Space Station, four veteran astronauts – Helen Sharman, Michael Barratt, Jean-François Clervoy and Daniel Tani – describe the singular, life-changing experience of looking down at Earth. In providing context for these images of our planet (the station orbits Earth every 92 minutes, for instance) and trying to find words for the profound sense of wonder that has come to be known as ‘the overview effect’, the astronauts strive valiantly to share their rarified perspective, giving us just a glimmer of an experience that many people think is just around the corner for a much greater number of us.
Bertrand Russell wanted to kill off causation. Can contemporary philosophy rescue it?
History of science
Bat-people on the Moon – what a famed 1835 hoax reveals about misinformation today
What it’s like to wear a prosthetic that ‘feels’
A square inch in a Petri dish becomes a grand stage for chemical transformations
What is it like to be a paramedic, navigating human emergency?
The tangled tale of how physicists built a groundbreaking wormhole in a lab
Computing and artificial intelligence
Teaching an AI to beat video games still takes human imagination
Social contagions can cause genuine illness, and TikTok may be a superspreader
Why making if-then connections might be the key to consciousness