A smart toilet

Smart Toilets: The Jetpack of the Bathroom

On first read, “smart toilet” may sound oxymoronic, but with the advent of receptacles that can play music, warm their seats, double as bidets, and even adjust themselves for elderly...
Author

Liz Tracey

Liz Tracey teaches microbiology and studies genetics in Cleveland, OH.
brass sundial

Sundials, Sentiments, and S-Town

S-Town , the record-breaking podcast released on March 28th to a wave of critical acclaim and (some concern), was envisioned by its creators to be a podcast as novel. Host...
His Girl Friday

Rory Gilmore: The New New Woman

...more than marriage and motherhood, her freedom symbolized by bicycle riding, cigarette smoking, and pursuit of the arts–often as a writer of fiction and journalism. In 1894, an article by...
Vespasian

The Rise and Fall of Pay Toilets

Ever wondered who first invented the pay toilet? The institution may just go back longer than you’d suspect. The Ancient Romans were not the first to have sophisticated sewers and...
Roanoke baptism

Our Long Roanoke Nightmare

The sixth season of Ryan Murphy’s American Horror Story premiered on September 14th after a lengthy campaign of intentional obfuscation, including 24 trailers that may or may not have had...
Blake's "Newton"

Does Science Destroy Wonder?

In his new book, The Kingdom of Speech, Tom Wolfe challenges the idea that language is a product of evolution, claiming it must have come through some other mechanism—namely, mnemonics....
Stranger Things title

“Stranger Things” and the Psychic Nosebleed

In the Netflix series Stranger Things, which has widely been declared the show of the summer, the tropes of 1980s popular culture are returned to us–some lovingly untouched, some turned...
genetic manipulation

Genetic Manipulation: The Next Big Thing

In science, the “big papers” (those that announce a major discovery or significant breakthrough) are usually found in the “big journals”: Cell, Nature, or Science. These publications are so high...

“Stupidity Virus?” Not Quite

The last few days have brought reports of scientists finding a virus that may affect cognitive function in those infected by it. While you can’t begrudge publications their attempts to...