Stephen Ornes' Articles
- Audiences are getting smarter, so the makers of movies, TV shows and video games are responding by enlisting scientists to make everything on screen appear even more authentic.
- Alkali metals explode in water. Using high-speed cameras, scientists have finally figured out why.
- The blood-brain barrier gets leakier with age. That breakdown could contribute to memory problems.
- Newly analyzed fossils suggest snakes lived at the same time as the golden age of dinosaurs. These early snakes appear to have had flexible skulls and likely also had four small limbs.
- The speed of light is often called a “constant.” Experiments now show that light doesn't always reach its top speed.
- Scientists have designed a problem-solving process that allows a computer to win at a kind of poker. It gives a computer enough knowledge to win against any opponent — eventually.
- A study on twins suggests that environmental factors can shape a person's immune system more than genes do.
- Scientists have found a compound in soil that can kill the microbes that cause anthrax, tuberculosis and other diseases.
- Scientists suspect the current Ebola outbreak started with bats that lived in a hollow tree in Guinea. The outbreak's first victim, a two-year-old boy, often played in the tree.
- Field guides often group birds together by similarities in appearance or behavior. But a new study, based on DNA, confirms earlier suspicions that such groupings are only skin-deep.