Closeup of a colorful zipper with metal teeth

How WWI Made the Zipper a Success

A money belt with a zipper became an instant success among WWI U.S. sailors, whose uniforms did not have pockets. Almost all initial zipper sales were for the money belts.
Flu hospital 1918

The Flu Pandemic of 1918, As Reported in 1918

The Spanish Influenza pandemic 100 years ago was the most lethal global disease outbreak since the Black Death. What were people thinking at the time?
A Spongey Lower Manhattan

How to Build a City That Doesn’t Flood? Turn it Into a Sponge

Cities encourage potentially devastating floods by laying down asphalt and pavement. Could this be avoided by making them "spongier" and more absorbent?

Why We Need to Start Listening to Insects

The study of wingbeat has come an incredibly long way and could lead to breakthroughs crucial for human populations facing insect-borne disease and pests.
Wampum illustration

Wampum was Massachusetts’ First Legal Currency

First Nations' seashell-derived wampum was Massachusetts' first legal currency, used as currency throughout northeastern America into the 19th century.
First sentence

Female Inventive Talent

Brief commentary on one line from JSTOR: An unsigned editorial from an 1870s issue of Scientific American suggests that women can be great inventors, too.
Antikythera Ephebe

The Antikythera Shipwreck Keeps Revealing Wonders

In the first century B.C.E., a Roman ship sank near the Greek Island of Antikythera. In 1900 some off-course sponge divers discovered the wreckage.
Neutron star collision

A Primer on Neutron Stars

In the far off constellation of Hydra; two neutron stars collided, producing vast clouds of gold and other heavy elements. What's a neutron star anyway?
Origins of speech crow

The Origins of Human Speech: More Like a Raven or a Writing Desk?

Language is the cognitive faculty that separates humans from other animals, but interjections have often been equated with the primitive cries of animals.
Scientists working in lab

To Save the Threatened, Scientists Clone Cacao, Fertilize Mollusks, and Hunt Porpoises

All over the world, researchers are trying to better understand a world in constant flux and to prevent species from extinction as they battle for survival.