Category: Science

How to Raise the Rarest Kiwi

FRANZ JOSEF, NEW ZEALAND—When I first see the kiwi chick, I briefly wonder if I’m actually looking at a real animal. It’s a grapefruit-sized sphere of fluff with an adorably short version of an adult’s long beak. When it sits still in its dark, red-lit enclosure, it looks indistinguishable from some of the plush toys that fill New Zealand’s gift…

What George Stephanopoulos Gets Wrong About Climate Policy

This weekend, we got a great view into the broken way that the American political media covers climate change. Many people sense that U.S. politics reporters don’t always cover global warming in the most substantive or evidence-grounded way. This weekend provides a good example of how their coverage is also frequently negligent and just plain silly. On Sunday, George Stephanopolous…

What Makes a Color Warm?

The internet abounds with techniques for teaching elementary schoolers the difference between warm and cool colors—an often-invisible, somewhat flexible line down the middle of the color wheel to separate warm reds, oranges, yellows, and browns from cool blues, greens, purples, and grays. The balance between them is said to enhance the beauty of Baroque landscapes and the Mona Lisa. Interior…

Scientists Can Now Repaint Butterfly Wings

When the butterfly emerged from its cocoon, in various butterflies—and found an even wider range of effects. In the painted lady and common buckeye, it looked like someone had taken an eraser to the middle of the wing, removing the splotches and spots that normally live there. In two species—the small postman and the Sara longwing—black parts of the wing…

Hurricane Maria Just Became the Latest Category 3 Storm

The Caribbean is preparing for another “dangerous” major hurricane less than two weeks after Irma struck the region, devastating entire islands, flattening homes and buildings, and killing more than 30 people. The National Hurricane Center on Monday upgraded Hurricane Maria to a Category 3 storm packing 120 mile per hour winds with stronger gusts. “Additional rapid strengthening is forecast during…

The Museum of Colonialism

The latest controversy to embroil the British Museum began, as it often seems to do in the early 21st century, on social media, when @britishmuseum tweeted a reply to an innocuous #AskACurator question about exhibition descriptions. “We aim to be understandable by 16-year-olds,” wrote the museum’s Asia curator in a string of tweets. “Sometimes Asian names can be confusing, so…