Inventions & Discoveries
The tools and technology that help us understand and change the world
In the 1980s workers in an English peat bog started unearthing bodies, the apparent victims of violence.
Better photosynthesis, bomb-sniffing spinach, and that’s just the start of the ways plants are inspiring scientific innovation.
Distillations talks to the biochemist about the discovery of CRISPR-Cas9, the tool’s promise, and dangers of its misuse.
Around the world a network of detectives searches for evidence of illicit nuclear activity. Is it enough to keep us safe from a nuclear catastrophe?
Lice can tell us a lot about who we are and where we came from.
A long-running genetics project in Siberia helps us understand how we made man’s best friend.
A historian of science goes searching for meaning in synthetic life.
A misunderstanding of hippo physiology gave rise to one of the most widespread and pointless practices in medical history.
Through fame, controversy, and peril Josiah Wedgwood and Joseph Priestley’s bond endured.
Can artificial intelligence help us decipher smell?
William Herschel had a conflicted relationship with his biggest creation.
Many tragic accidents have provided unexpectedly valuable information for scientists.
Is the mayonnaise substitute Just Mayo the future of food or just another product from the hype machine?
GMOs are one of the great success stories of the postwar era. So why do many find this technology so distasteful?
In the 1950s, a devious oil company created a television show to flatter industrialists and win their business.
The jogging craze of the 1970s required a change of equipment.
Dissatisfied with the limitations of the human body, some people are modifying themselves with electronic compasses and magnetic implants.
A novel swimsuit reveals that faster isn’t necessarily better.