It’s the network, stupid: study offers fresh insight into why we’re so divided

Saturday, January 4, 2020 at 8:57 PM

There's rarely time to write about every cool science-y story that comes our way. So this year, we're once again running a special Twelve Days of Christmas series of posts, highlighting one science story that fell through the cracks each day, from December 25 through January 5.

Giant surveillance balloons are lurking at the edge of space

Saturday, January 4, 2020 at 8:27 PM

It’s a brisk December morning at Spaceport Tucson, America’s premiere (only?) dedicated launch pad for stratospheric balloons, and a small army of technicians in reflective vests is milling around on the concrete and thawing out after a long, cold night.

NIST Study Of 189 Facial Recognition Algorithms Finds Minorities Are Misidentified Almost 100 Times More Often Than White Men

Wednesday, January 1, 2020 at 10:32 AM

The development and deployment of facial recognition tech continues steadily, but the algorithms involved don't seem to be getting much better at recognizing faces.

Quiz: Let Us Predict Whether You’re a Democrat or a Republican

Wednesday, January 1, 2020 at 2:02 AM

Tell us a few details about you and we’ll guess which political party you belong to. It shouldn’t be that simple, right? We’re all complex people with a multiplicity of identities and values.

4 Things That Keep the N.S.A. Up at Night

Monday, December 30, 2019 at 10:01 PM

Mr. Warzel is an Opinion writer at large. This article is part of a limited-run newsletter. You can sign up here.

The hidden menace threatening Democrats' bid to beat Trump in 2020

Monday, December 30, 2019 at 10:01 AM

Democrats are entering a critical stretch of the campaign when voters are paying more attention, the top candidates and their desperate single-digit rivals are more likely to begin attacking one another, and Trump, facing both impeachment and a slew of general election polls that show him losing to…

Domestic Cozy: 10

Sunday, December 29, 2019 at 2:31 PM

There is an interesting emerging relationship, I think, between domestic cozy and the slightly older “trad” turn in contemporary youth culture (which I think began at the height of the recession with burned-out Millennials), complete with tendencies towards religion, social conservatism, and tra…

Joe Biden explains why he’d defy a subpoena to testify in the Senate impeachment trial

Sunday, December 29, 2019 at 2:01 PM

Former Vice President Joe Biden said in an interview on Friday that if he were subpoenaed to testify in President Donald Trump’s upcoming Senate impeachment trial, he would defy the order.

Judge rules Denver’s urban camping ban unconstitutional

Sunday, December 29, 2019 at 2:01 PM

A Denver County judge ruled Friday that the city’s controversial urban camping ban is unconstitutional, constituting cruel and unusual punishment. In his ruling, Judge Johnny C. Barajas cited another decision from the U.S.

Savage tick-clone armies are sucking cows to death; experts fear for humans

Sunday, December 29, 2019 at 1:01 AM

Ravenous swarms of cloned ticks have killed a fifth cow in North Carolina by exsanguination—that is, by draining it of blood—the state’s Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services warned this week.

Health care is getting more and more expensive, and low-wage workers are bearing more of the cost

Sunday, December 29, 2019 at 1:01 AM

Half of all Americans get their health insurance through work. Trouble is, doing so is becoming less and less affordable — especially for already low-wage workers.

Predictable Identities: 23 – The Self

Sunday, December 29, 2019 at 1:01 AM

In reality there are only atoms and the void, but in our mind exists the self. This thing here is part of me, this thing there isn’t. The concept of self serves the same purpose as all others: it makes good predictions. Or perhaps it made good predictions at some point, and got stuck.

The telling conservative backlash to a Virginia zoning reform proposal, explained

Saturday, December 28, 2019 at 12:11 AM

Ibraheem Samirah, a Democratic member of the Virginia House of Delegates who represents portions of DC suburbs in Fairfax and Loudon Counties, has an idea: legalize “duplex” houses on all residential land throughout the state.

Mike Bloomberg has spent a staggering $100 million on campaign ads in a month

Friday, December 27, 2019 at 11:11 PM

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has spent well over $100 million on advertising since entering the Democratic presidential primary about a month ago — a head-spinning sum of money for ad buys that dwarfs most of his competition and highlights the unique advantages of being a billionaire in…

The Toxic Bubble of Technical Debt Threatening America

Friday, December 27, 2019 at 10:11 AM

In Northern California, the fires have come again, sending hundreds of thousands fleeing by mandate.