Science & Society

  1. Computing

    Intel STS finalist’s computer program models social life

    Ajay Saini has brought together math and computer science to show how habits spread within social groups. His new computer program could help promote healthy habits.

  2. Health & Medicine

    The dangerous rise of electronic cigarettes

    Electronic cigarettes were originally advertised as a way for smokers to wean themselves off of cigarettes. In fact, e-cigarettes are helping hook a whole new generation of young people on nicotine — an addiction that may transition back to tobacco.

  3. Health & Medicine

    Explainer: What is a hookah?

    Many teens are turning to water pipes as a potentially safer alternative to conventional cigarettes. But they’d be wrong.

  4. Health & Medicine

    Explainer: What are e-cigarettes?

    New battery-powered devices deliver nicotine, a dangerous and addictive drug.

  5. Environment

    Burning to learn

    Fires cause billions of dollars of destruction to homes and forests every year. But not all fires are bad, especially for forests. With a better understanding of fire, scientists can both help people prevent dangerous fires — and identify which ones it would be better to let burn.

  6. Science & Society

    Eric Chen wins 2014 Intel Science Talent Search

    The Intel Science Talent Search gala on March 11 honored 40 brilliant high school seniors and their research projects. Eric Chen won first place for his computer screening technique that identified new influenza drugs.

  7. Genetics

    Where Native Americans come from

    All tribes seem to derive from the same Asian roots, DNA indicates.

  8. Animals

    A weekend for the birds

    February 14 to 17 is this year’s Great Backyard Bird Count. It offers an opportunity to not only learn about the birds in your neighborhood but also contribute to science.

  9. Computing

    Cool Jobs: Paid to dream

    Some visionaries use science and engineering to see what our world could — and should — become

  10. Humans

    Human ancestors threw spears

    Who threw first? Scientists had long believed that ancient people who lived 80,000 years ago were the first to throw spears with stone tips. But the discovery of 279,000-year-old stone spear tips in Ethiopia pushes that date back, and suggests prehuman species hunted with spears too.

  11. Science & Society

    Bigger groups make better tools

    As the size of a population grows, so too does its ability to quickly create clever new tools. Lab experiments suggest that connections between people give rise to the new creations.

  12. Science & Society

    Many teens try alternatives to cigarettes

    Teen use of cigarettes has dropped a bit in recent years. But many kids have been turning to other tobacco and tobacco-like products. And which they choose can differ sharply by gender and ethnic group.