In 1967, Sweden made a huge change to its roads — it went from driving on the left-hand side to the right, all in the space of one day. Like the US, Swedish cars are left-hand drive, and driving on the left-hand side of the road meant that seeing around the car in front of you while attempting to pass was difficult and lead to a high number of fatalities. With laws requiring seatbelts and other safety equipment, Swedish car manufacturers like Volvo gained a reputation for being among the safest on the road.
The invention of plastic changed human history forever. From sterile medical supplies to food packaging that lengthens shelf lives, our world would grind to a halt without it. But all that plastic has to go somewhere, and it's beginning to show up in huge amounts in our waterways, oceans, and even ourselves. Kurzgesagt looks at the plastic problem and what we can to clean up our own act.
Explaining quantum computing to your average person is hard. You'll definitely need an expert — and the expert has to be able to explain quantum computing in a way that's easily understood. Senior Manager of Quantum Research at IBM Dr. Talia Gershon is just that person. Not only does Dr. Gershon know her stuff, she has a natural gift for being able to break down tough concepts into bite-sized chunks. WIRED had Dr. Gershon explain quantum computing on five different levels, from a child to an educated professional.
Volkswagen recently smashed the overall record at the Pikes Peak International Hillclimb with their electric-powered I.D. R prototype racer. They beat the old record by over 15 seconds — almost an eternity when first place can come down to thousandths of a second. Mark Robber was challenged by VW to make a battery that could charge the I.D. R, and decided on one of the oldest tricks in the book — making a lemon battery and trying to break a world record himself.
Graphics card maker NVIDIA is coming up with a deep-learning AI solution for creating slow-motion video from footage shot at standard frame rates. The software creates extra frames and inserts them into the original video, creating the slow-motion effect. NVIDIA even went so far as to take footage from the Slo Mo Guys and slow it down even further, making clear, coherent video from the source.
The countdown has been used to launch rockets, start events, and just about everything else since 1961. But the countdown has its origins in film, not science. German film director Fritz Lang's 1929 Woman on the Moon was the invention of the countdown — and was an amazingly accurate film.
Built for an active lifestyle, the All Day Every Day Pant is more stylish than traditional sweats, and more comfortable than any pair of jeans. In a huge shift away from the baggy, boring sweatpants you only break out in private around the house, Public Rec has created a leisure pant that is not only better fitting than any sweats you've had because they come in numbered waist and length sizing, but are also made with an ultra-soft, durable nylon and spandex fabric blend that wicks away moisture. You've always wanted to wear sweats in public without looking like you've given up, and the All Day Every Day Pant gives you outdoor style paired with indoor comfort to make that dream a reality.
Presented by Public Rec.
Erectile dysfunction isn't on the short list of conversation starters for most guys. But since it affects 40% of men by the age of 40, it's more common than you might think. Thanks to science there can be a solution. hims is a one-stop shop for men's wellness and offers treatment plans that are backed by science and have been prescribed by doctors for over 20 years. It can work and hims makes it easy by shipping directly to your door. No more awkward doctor's office waiting rooms or long pharmacy lines. Get started online today for only $5.
Presented by hims.
On a beach in West Jutland, Denmark, a low building near the beach houses one of the most crucial Internet connections in the world. Undersea fiber optic cables from New Jersey terminate here, connecting the US with Europe. MOTHERBOARD talked with a marine maintenance manager to find out just how important it is keeping the transatlantic link up and running in the information age.
Climate change is nothing new. The Earth's weather has gone through different periods of hot, cold, dry, and wet over its lifetime. Nearly 234 million years ago, the planet went through one of these stages. At the time, the world was one big supercontinent known as Pangea. The entire surface was flat and extremely dry. That is, until one day it started raining, and it kept on raining for the next two million years.
Disney's animatronics have always been way ahead of their time. Now, the entertainment giant is teaching their performing robots a new set of tricks. Comprised of three hinged links, the headless cyborg uses a gravity-driven pendulum to perform a series of acrobatic stunts while flying through the air with the greatest of ease.
The country is divided. Families split down the middle. All over one thing — yanny or laurel. The audio illusion is driving the internet crazy but luckily science is here to save us. Several different factors, like the device you use, go into what each person hears but it mainly comes down to pitch. AsapSCIENCE breaks down the entire phenomenon in under three minutes while Neuroscientist Tyler Perrachione also weighs in.
Richard Jenkins loves sailing — on land and sea. He broke a speed record for land sailing in a vehicle of his own design and then set his sights on something completely different — bringing autonomous tech to sailing. His company Sail Drone has a fleet of self-sailing drones, powered by nothing but sun and wind, that are navigating the San Fransico Bay and sending back real-time telemetry via satellite.
Gamers, prepare to be amazed. After you pick your jaw up from the floor, allow Lewis Hilsenteger to walk you through his insane gaming PC setup. It starts with a 42.5-inch 4K LG Display, flanked by a pair of 24-inch portrait displays to completely immerse you in the action. It's powered by a Xidex PC with a PlayStation input. At the heart of the station is an Imperator reclining chair, fitted with a refrigerator and snack stand for those long nights of Far Cry 5. But playing in a throne fit for a gaming king doesn't come cheap. Altogether, it'll set you back about $30,000.
The most prolific killer on Earth is the bacteriophage — a virus that does nothing but kills bacteria by the trillions, every day. Right now, you're covered in them, but fortunately, they can't infect humans. With bacteria becoming more resistant to antibiotics, the bacteriophage might be the best weapon we have in the fight against infection.
More electricity produced by solar panels sounds like it's a win-win proposition. But with the current structure of our power grid, solar energy actually causes a problem. Called the "duck curve," demand for energy dips when solar energy production is at its highest, potentially causing damage to the grid. Which means some solar panels are shut off at their peak production, causing energy to be wasted. Find out the details in this explanation from Vox.
Timex honors their rich watchmaking history with the Marlin Automatic Watch. This modern release is an aesthetic refresh of the iconic 1960s Marlin, replacing the original hand-wound movement with a 21 jewel automatic. The design has been updated here and there, but maintains the same clean, mid-century feel, and incorporates the original's signature acrylic domed crystal. It's finished with a date window at 3 o'clock and a classic leather strap using material from the S.B. Foot Tanning Company.
Presented by Timex.
The result of three years of research and millions of data points, the Casper Wave is a breakthrough in mattress design. Underneath its handsome exterior, you'll find the new, proprietary Natural Geometry System. It uses five layers of foam to mimic the natural contours of your body at 36 specific points, adjusting naturally to your shoulders and hips without sacrificing support, and keeping your spine properly aligned. Like the original, it uses open-cell foams to keep you cool at night. Designed and assembled in the USA.
Presented by Casper.
Boston Dynamics continues to hasten the end of human usefulness with their latest demo of the SpotMini robot. After being driven through the test area to build a map, the SpotMini then navigates the course on its own — indoors, outdoors, and up and down steps. Boston Dynamics other robot, the bipedal Atlas, was also spotted outside for a jog and jumping over obstacles. Watch Atlas in action here.
In a constantly expanding universe, what would the end look like? As the universe expands, it expands faster — faster than the speed of light. Which means actually getting there might be impossible, even if the technical limitations were overcome. So there's a good chance that we'll probably never know.
There are a lot of rumors and half-truths surrounding space and what it's really like to be out there. Chris Hadfield was the first Canadian to walk in space and has been there three times, making him a bit of an expert on the subject. Chris refutes some of the biggest myths surrounding living above the atmosphere and even confirms a few in this question-and-answer session with WIRED.
A spinning black hole could provide enough energy to power civilization for trillions of years — and create the biggest bomb known to the universe. Using the rotation of a black hole to supercharge electromagnetic waves could create massive amounts of energy or equally massive amounts of destruction. Kurzgesagt explains what it would take to harness a black hole and the potential risks of the process.
To be a fighter pilot, you need a good g-force tolerance — or at least better than Tom Scott. Tom took a ride in the Royal Air Force's centrifuge, where they test and train pilots on withstanding the g-forces encountered while flying a modern jet aircraft. This is what it looks like when you lose consciousness from g-loc — hopefully while not actually flying a plane.
Scientists have been cloning animals for nearly two decades. Since Dolly the sheep, horses, cows, pigs and even two monkeys have been successfully cloned — but it still isn't an exact science. Life Noggin looks at what would happen if you were to clone yourself and the surprising facts about what might happen to it.
We see the moon every night when the sun goes down but due to the synchronous rotation, we actually only see a small portion of it. Luckily for us, NASA is allowing you to view our natural satellite like never before. Using data collected over the last nine years by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft, they have created a virtual tour that offers a detailed look at the near side, the far side, and everything in between.
We may not have much, but on a large enough scale, there's lots and lots of time. But while time won't go on forever, none of us will be there to see it end — so make the most of what you've got. This remaster of one of Kurzgesagt's videos puts time in perspective, from beginning to end.
At the University of Arizona, the Giant Magellan Telescope is under construction. Using seven 27-foot-tall mirrors ground to within one-thousandth of an inch, it will be the largest optical telescope in the world once completed. Astronomer Patrick McCarthy describes the what it takes to make the mirrors and what the telescope will be capable of when it's installed at it's permanent home in Chile.
There are pros to living in the city, but there are also a whole bunch of cons. Between pollution, traffic, and crime, the perfect one just doesn't exist. So let's create it. Borrowing all of the great features from the best cities around the world and throwing in a few of their own, Life Noggin builds a marvelous utopia from the ground up. Too bad it's only hypothetical.
Currently, our planet Earth is happily residing in the Milky Way. We say currently because The Andromeda galaxy is heading straight for us. When the two galaxies collide, the crash will cause both of them and their supermassive black holes to merge creating a super, supermassive black hole. The good news is none of us will be around to see it. The event won't take place for at least another four billion years.
A lot of the talk about commercial space companies focuses on getting there — the reusable rockets and vehicles that will take people and cargo into orbit. But getting there is only half of the discussion. A whole private industry based on satellite imaging and communications has sprung up in the last decade — making space one of the last financial frontiers.
Not sleeping for a week won't break any records, but it might break you. The effects of going without sleep are well documented, but there's also a growing body of research that suggests sleep deprivation can have a beneficial effect on depression. Life Noggin looks at the ups and downs of not sleeping.
It's a long way up to leave the Earth's atmosphere behind reach true space. But just how far away is it? The Royal Greenwich Observatory has an answer — and it's both farther away and closer than you might think.