At the Smithsonian | Smithsonianhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/rss/smithsonian-institution/RSS feed for At the SmithsonianenThu, 27 Aug 2015 17:32:48 +0000Why Can’t We Turn Our Eyes Away From the Grotesque and Macabre?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/why-cant-we-just-turn-our-eyes-away-grotesque-and-macabre-180956424/Alexander Gardner’s photographs of Civil War corpses were among the first to play to the uncomfortable attraction humans have for shocking imagesThu, 27 Aug 2015 17:32:48 +0000Life May Have Spread Through the Galaxy Like a Plaguehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/life-may-have-spread-through-galaxy-plague-180956425/If alien life is distributed in a pattern that mirrors epidemics, it could be strong support for the theory of panspermiaThu, 27 Aug 2015 14:30:19 +0000Updated: One of the National Zoo's Panda Cubs Has Diedhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/one-panda-cub-has-died-180956417/The Zoo announced on August 26 that the smaller of its newborn twin panda cubs has diedWed, 26 Aug 2015 19:25:51 +0000When Do Pandas Get Their Eye Patches? http://www.smithsonianmag.com/videos/category/at-the-smithsonian/when-do-pandas-get-their-eye-patches/A panda bear's defining features are not present at birth. Caretakers at Smithsonian's National Zoo explain when a panda's eye patches start to appearWed, 26 Aug 2015 17:41:03 +0000Meet Mr. Wizard, Television's Original Science Guyhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/meet-mr-wizard-science-guy-inspired-bill-nye-180956371/In the 1950s and 1960s, Don Herbert broadcast some of the most mesmerizing, and kooky, science experiments from his garageWed, 26 Aug 2015 14:30:14 +0000Thirty Years Ago, an Artificial Heart Helped Save a Grocery Store Managerhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/thirty-years-ago-artificial-heart-helped-save-grocery-store-manager-180956388/The Smithsonian, home to the Jarvik 7 and a host of modern chest-pumping technologies, has a lot of (artificial) heartWed, 26 Aug 2015 14:00:53 +0000Panda Update: Giant Panda Mom Mei Xiang Won't Exchange Care of Cubshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/panda-update-giant-panda-mom-mei-xiang-wont-exchange-care-cubs-180956396/Smaller cub is receiving infant formula and fluids from Zoo veterinariansTue, 25 Aug 2015 18:25:27 +0000The Broken Promise of the Levees That Failed New Orleanshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/broken-promise-levees-failed-new-orleans-180956326/A piece of concrete serves as a reminder of how Hurricane Katrina shattered a city's faithMon, 24 Aug 2015 15:00:00 +0000What Happens to Spiders That Get Sucked Into a Vacuum?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/what-happens-spiders-sucked-into-vacuum-180956331/You asked, we answeredMon, 24 Aug 2015 15:00:00 +0000A Second Panda Cub is Born at the Zoo (New Pictures)http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/second-panda-cub-born-zoo-180956377/After giving birth to one cub, the Zoo's 17-year-old female panda, hours later, delivers a second cubSun, 23 Aug 2015 11:33:01 +0000BREAKING: A Panda Cub is Born at the National Zoo (Video)http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/breaking-zoo-reports-female-giant-panda-mei-xiang-cub-birth-video-180956374/The 17-year-old female giant panda Mei Xiang gives birthSat, 22 Aug 2015 20:09:57 +0000Ask Smithsonian: Why Do Flamingos Stand on One Leg?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/ask-smithsonian-why-do-flamingos-stand-one-leg-180956323/Flamingos may be doing their one-legged tree pose to stay warm or just because it's comfortableThu, 20 Aug 2015 17:42:15 +0000Panda Cub (Or Is It Bamboo?) Detected in Mei Xiang's Ultrasoundhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/panda-cub-bamboo-detected-mei-xiang-ultrasound-zoo-180956301/Breeding pandas is complicated and frustrating. The Zoo's female Giant Panda has delivered two healthy cubs in the past ten yearsWed, 19 Aug 2015 21:06:59 +0000A Next Gen Museum Show Takes Aim at Inspiring Next Gen Ingenuityhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/next-gen-museum-show-takes-aim-inspiring-next-gen-ingenuity-180956289/Curators are betting high-tech playtime will turn today’s kids into tomorrow’s engineering visionariesMon, 17 Aug 2015 14:25:48 +0000The Story of Mexican Coke Is a Lot More Complex Than Hipsters Would Like to Admithttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/story-mexican-coke-more-complex-than-hipsters-would-admit-180956032/A nasty trade war and questionable scientific assumptions make it difficult to discern what is, and what isn't, the real thingTue, 11 Aug 2015 15:47:14 +0000When a Trip to the Zoo Resulted in an Engineering Breakthroughhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/when-trip-to-zoo-resulted-in-engineering-breakthrough-180956204/Megan Leftwich, an engineering professor at George Washington University, is building a robotic flipper based on her observations of sea lionsMon, 10 Aug 2015 15:20:00 +0000This is the First Known Photo of the Smithsonian Castlehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/smithsonian-celebrates-169th-birthday-image-castles-construction-180956212/On the Smithsonian's 169th birthday, a glimpse into the iconic Castle's constructionMon, 10 Aug 2015 14:39:00 +0000What Gives Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken” Its Power?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/what-gives-robert-frosts-road-not-taken-its-power-180956200/On the 100th anniversary of the poem’s publication, a Smithsonian poet examines its message and how it encapsulates what its author was all aboutMon, 10 Aug 2015 14:30:47 +0000Ask Smithsonian: Why Do We Get Prune Fingers?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/ask-smithsonian-why-do-we-get-prune-fingers-180956024/Some researchers say that, like tire treads, our fingers and toes could get better traction in wet conditionsThu, 06 Aug 2015 14:33:50 +0000How a Five-Letter Word Built a 104-Year-Old Companyhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-five-letter-word-built-104-year-old-company-180955899/THINK—printed on signs, deskplates, business cards and notepads—was the seed from which the rest of IBM’s culture would growMon, 03 Aug 2015 17:09:23 +0000When Congress Looked James Smithson's Gift Horse in the Mouthhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/looking-james-smithsons-gift-horse-mouth-180956107/180 years ago, the U.S. government debated what to do with the bequest from across the pondThu, 30 Jul 2015 14:17:09 +0000New Jamestown Discovery Reveals the Identities of Four Prominent Settlers http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/new-archaeological-research-jamestown-reveals-identities-four-prominent-settlers-discovery-180956028/The findings by Smithsonian scientists dig up the dynamics of daily life in the first permanent British settlement in the coloniesTue, 28 Jul 2015 15:30:00 +0000The Entertaining Saga of the Worst Crook in Colonial Americahttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/long-entertaining-saga-worst-crook-colonial-america-180955643/Stephen Burroughs was a thief, a counterfeiter and a convicted criminal. A rare piece of his fake currency is in the collectionsMon, 27 Jul 2015 14:41:32 +0000The Scandalous Story Behind the Provocative 19th-Century Sculpture "Greek Slave" http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/scandalous-story-behind-provocative-sculpture-greek-slave-19th-century-audiences-180956029/Artist Hiram Powers earned fame and fortune for his beguiling sculpture, but how he crafted it might have proved even more shockingFri, 24 Jul 2015 15:53:51 +0000Inspiring Invention the MacGyver Wayhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/inspiring-invention-macgyver-way-180955987/Visitors to the Smithsonian's new Spark!Lab are challenged to solve problems with ingenuity and a pile of off-the-shelf itemsWed, 22 Jul 2015 10:00:00 +0000Teenage Inventor Alexis Lewis Thinks That Kids Have the Solutions to the World's Problemshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/teen-inventor-alexis-lewis-wants-kids-to-invent-solutions-to-worlds-problems-180955933/With a patent to her name and more likely on the way, the 15-year-old has made it her mission to inspire young innovatorsTue, 21 Jul 2015 17:59:04 +0000Smithsonian Takes a Giant Step with Its First Kickstarter Campaign to Fund the Conservation of Neil Armstrong's Spacesuithttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/smithsonian-takes-giant-step-its-first-kickstarter-campaign-fund-conservation-neil-armstrongs-spacesuit-180955964/On the 46th anniversary of the historic moonwalk, the spacesuit that made it possible is headed to the conservation lab Mon, 20 Jul 2015 13:21:02 +0000The Farmworker’s Champion Dolores Huerta Receives Her Due, Even as the Struggle for Justice Continueshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/farmworkers-champion-dolores-huerta-gets-her-due-even-struggle-justice-continues-180955924/We must continue the struggle against present-day agricultural production and labor practices, says the director of the Smithsonian’s Latino Center Thu, 16 Jul 2015 18:35:44 +0000Ask Smithsonian: What Makes Us a Righty or a Lefty?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/ask-smithsonian-what-makes-us-righty-or-lefty-180955922/Scientists are interested in studying why some of us are non-right-handers because it might offer insight into how the brain developsThu, 16 Jul 2015 18:00:22 +0000The Evolution of Money, From Feathers to Credit Cardshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/evolution-money-feathers-credit-cards-180955602/Coin collectors, and trinket lovers welcome back the National Numismatic Collections to its splendid new gallery at the American History MuseumWed, 15 Jul 2015 18:51:47 +0000How Singer Won the Sewing Machine War http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-singer-won-sewing-machine-war-180955919/The Singer Sewing Machine changed the way America manufactured textiles, but the invention itself was less important than the company’s innovative businessTue, 14 Jul 2015 17:54:33 +0000Which of These Baseball Players Should the Portrait Gallery Put on Display?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/which-these-baseball-players-should-portrait-gallery-put-display-180955906/Vote for these all-stars in an entirely different kind of competitionMon, 13 Jul 2015 13:00:00 +0000The Scopes Trial Redefined Science Journalism and Shaped It to What It Is Todayhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/scopes-trial-redefined-science-journalism-shaped-it-what-it-is-today-180955881/Ninety years ago a Tennessee man stood trial for teaching evolution, a Smithsonian archives collection offers a glimpse into the rich backstoryFri, 10 Jul 2015 15:01:33 +0000These Scientists Hope to Have Half the World's Plant Families on Ice By the End of Summer http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/these-scientists-hope-have-half-worlds-plant-families-on-ice-by-end-summer-180955867/Teaming up with botanical gardens, researchers at the Natural History Museum are digging deep into garden plant genomicsThu, 09 Jul 2015 19:37:27 +0000A New Photo Exhibition Depicts Just How Dramatic Mother Earth Can Behttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/new-exhibition-depicts-just-how-dramatic-mother-earth-can-be-180955866/Iceland, the land of fire and ice, brings vivid focus to the raw power of a geophysically active EarthThu, 09 Jul 2015 18:22:31 +0000These Two Scientists Turned Data From the Sun Into a Work of Arthttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/these-two-scientists-turned-data-sun-into-work-art-180955824/After collecting real-time data from the sun, two astrophysicists got to tinkering with video game components and the outcome is breathtakingWed, 08 Jul 2015 13:00:00 +0000A Look Into the Innovative Mind of One of the World's Most Inventive Architectshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/a-look-innovative-mind-one-worlds-most-inventive-architects-180955826/A new show at the Cooper Hewitt reveals the process behind designer Thomas Heatherwick's projectsWed, 08 Jul 2015 10:00:00 +0000Tracing the History of American Invention, From the Telegraph to the Apple Ihttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/tracing-history-american-invention-from-telegraph-to-apple-I-180955838/More than 70 artifacts, from an artificial heart to an Etch A Sketch, grace the entryway to the American History Museum's new innovation wing Tue, 07 Jul 2015 20:40:49 +0000This Is How You Live Paint an Eventhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/this-is-how-you-live-paint-an-event-180955823/Artist Jeremy Sutton painted on his iPad while musicians performed and visitors played virtual reality games at the Smithsonian American Art MuseumTue, 07 Jul 2015 14:54:04 +0000How Curators Wrestled With the Complex Story of American Businesshttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-curators-wrestled-complex-story-american-business-180955783/The broad and sometimes difficult history of business in the U.S., its rogues, heros, successes and failures, is the dynamic story in a new exhibitionMon, 06 Jul 2015 18:14:51 +0000How Colonel Sanders Made Kentucky Fried Chicken an American Success Storyhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-colonel-sanders-made-kentucky-fried-chicken-american-success-story-180955806/A weathervane from the Smithsonian collections is emblematic of Harland Sanders’s decades-long pursuit to make his chicken finger-lickin' goodMon, 06 Jul 2015 14:41:55 +0000Why Milo's Sunrises Are a Symphony of Color in The Phantom Tollboothhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/why-milos-sunrises-are-symphony-color-phantom-tollbooth-180955811/Author Norton Juster says one boon to his magical writing is that he was born with synesthesia and hears colorsFri, 03 Jul 2015 12:04:36 +0000Bringing Thomas Jefferson's Battered Tombstone Back to Lifehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/leveraging-material-science-restore-thomas-jeffersons-battered-tombstone-180954462/The founding father's fragile grave marker has survived for centuries, enduring souveniring, a fire and errant repairs Thu, 02 Jul 2015 15:21:42 +0000The Great Moon Hoax Was Simply a Sign of Its Timehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/great-moon-hoax-was-simply-sign-its-time-180955761/Scientific discoveries and faraway voyages inspired fantastic tales—and a new Smithsonian exhibitionThu, 02 Jul 2015 14:33:53 +0000On His First Day on the Job, Smithsonian Secretary David J. Skorton Discusses the Past and the Futurehttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/his-first-day-job-smithsonian-secretary-david-j-skorton-discusses-past-and-future-180955793/The new Smithsonian leader says he wants to emphasize the arts and humanities at a time when they are being deemphasized nationally Wed, 01 Jul 2015 18:48:07 +0000What Did Insects Evolve From and More Questions From Our Readershttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/what-did-insects-evolve-from-more-questions-from-readers-180955758/You asked, we answeredWed, 01 Jul 2015 16:00:00 +0000What Makes the Orange Juice Can Worthy of Display in a Museumhttp://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/what-makes-orange-juice-can-important-museum-artifact-180955750/A new exhibition explains why the everyday objects of today and the recent past are so important to understanding who we areTue, 30 Jun 2015 13:15:00 +0000Is Architecture Actually a Form of Weaving?http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/architecture-actually-form-weaving-180955698/David Adjaye, lead architect of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, approaches building design as creating "fabric"Mon, 29 Jun 2015 14:45:10 +0000