Most talked about Popular Science stories

Benjamin Franklin Once Electrocuted Some Turkeys For Science

popsci.com — Benjamin Franklin's famous kite-flying experiment, conducted in 1752, was not his first study with electricity. Before that, he tested electric shocks on some farmyard birds. As he wrote to botanist Peter Collinson in a letter dated 1749, "A Turky is to be killed for our Dinners by the Electrical Shock; and roasted by the electrical Jack, before a Fire kindled by the Electrified Bottle .
Nov 27, 2014

RT @robinlloyd99: I nominate @franciediep for best Turkey Day science story: Ben Franklin electrocuted turkeys pops.ci/Sv9B0f

Nov 27, 2014

I nominate @franciediep for best Turkey Day science story: Ben Franklin electrocuted turkeys pops.ci/Sv9B0f

Nov 27, 2014

RT @JenLucPiquant: Benjamin Franklin Once Electrocuted Some Turkeys For Science pops.ci/SIN7pO

The Science And Engineering Of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Balloons

popsci.com — They're cute and fat and take real engineering to get up into the air. I'm talking about the iconic balloons in Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, which starts at 9:00 am Eastern tomorrow. Just one group of 28 full-time workers, the Macy's Parade Studio in New Jersey, conceives of, makes, and maintains all of the parade's balloons.
Nov 27, 2014

RT @PopSci: The science and engineering of the iconic balloons in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade pops.ci/fWrD3B pic.twitter.com/ZbG3kNwDY3

Nov 26, 2014

RT @joshpetri: Macy’s employs 28 people full-time that do nothing but build and maintain their balloons popsci.com/science-and-en…

155 Years Later, Darwin's Manuscripts Are Going Digital

popsci.com — Charles Darwin may be a household name now, but we haven't always had the theory of natural selection. On November 24, 1859, he published On the Origin of Species as a culmination of nearly three decades of research after his journey on the H.M.S. Beagle. Happy 155th anniversary of On the Origin of Species!

DNA Sequencing Could Make Turkeys Happier And Tastier

popsci.com — It's no accident that turkeys have more than doubled in size over the past 80 years-bigger is better, at least when it comes to the Thanksgiving table. But decades of farmers raising increasingly engorged turkeys isn't just bad for the birds, which may grow so large they can't even stand.

SpaceX Unveils Autonomous Drone Ship For Landing Reusable Rockets

popsci.com — In the ongoing effort to lower the cost of commercial spaceflight, private companies hope to conquer a facet of rocket design NASA hasn't fully explored yet: reusable rockets. Up until now, all space rockets have used disposable launch systems, meaning they're designed to launch only once, and afterward, their parts are never recovered.
Nov 26, 2014

RT @PopSci: SpaceX unveils an autonomous drone ship for landing reusable Falcon 9 rockets pops.ci/45BtsB pic.twitter.com/s3ByFjmkP2

Nov 26, 2014

RT @PopSci: SpaceX unveils an autonomous drone ship for landing reusable Falcon 9 rockets pops.ci/45BtsB pic.twitter.com/s3ByFjmkP2

Rare Anglerfish Caught On Video

popsci.com — Earlier this month, scientists observed the black seadevil species of anglerfish alive in its natural habitat for the first time. You might recognize this sort of bony monster from Finding Nemo. One of them nearly swallows Marlin and Dory after luring them toward its gruesome jaws with the pretty bauble dangling from its forehead.

How To Make Extra-Efficient Solar Panels Using Old Blu-Ray Discs

popsci.com — You probably don't think of them that way, but Blu-ray discs have a gorgeous color. In fact, the same physics that gives butterfly wings and housefly eyes their iridescent shine are also at work on Blu-ray.
Nov 25, 2014

How To Make Extra-Efficient Solar Panels Using Old Blu-Ray Discs: color makes them efficient at catching light. pops.ci/MqWmVy

Astronauts Levitate Molten Orb Of Metal In Space

popsci.com — Behold the fiery sphere of pain in the heavens! No, not the sun, this one is much, much closer to Earth, and much stranger still. Aboard the International Space Station, scientists have an electromagnetic levitator that lets them suspend a sphere of liquid metal in place. Why?

Is Depression An Infectious Disease?

popsci.com — Mental health continues to be one of society's greatest concerns. Its enigmatic nature leaves both the public and the health professional in a quandary to understand not only the cause but also the means to cure. Though research has been conducted for centuries, at times it feels we are up against intractable odds.

Our Savior, The Supervillain

popsci.com — This month, Elon Musk reminded us once again why he's the most entertaining executive alive. In an online comment that's since been deleted, Musk wrote about his fears concerning artificial intelligence (AI) research and how fast it is progressing.
Nov 25, 2014

Our Savior, The Supervillain pops.ci/wrCCs7 via @PopSci Food for thought from one of LA's resident geniuses, @elonmusk.

Nov 24, 2014

Our Savior, The Supervillain: My piece for @PopSci about @elonmusk, the world's foremost doomsday prepper. pops.ci/lLi3vu

Nov 24, 2014

RT @DaveMosher: Elon Musk: Supervillain—and humanity’s greatest hope? <3ing this piece by @esofge: popsci.com/our-savior-sup…

Nov 24, 2014

Elon Musk: Supervillain—and humanity’s greatest hope? <3ing this piece by @esofge: popsci.com/our-savior-sup…

The Real Problems Of Running A Jurassic Park

popsci.com — The teaser trailer for Jurassic World will be released this Thursday, and while everyone is looking forward to the film's release next June, some imaginative folks on Twitter have been exploring what kind of problems Jurassic Park might have had to endure if it were a vacation destination in the real world.