Politicians Are More Persuasive During Interactive Town Hall Meetings

When given a chance at direct persuasion, most politicians are surprisingly good at changing our minds

Personal environmental monitors, such as TZOA (shown here), measure air quality and stream that information to users who may otherwise have no idea what they are breathing.

With Wearable Devices That Monitor Air Quality, Scientists Can Crowdsource Pollution Maps

Emerging technology means anyone with a smartphone can become a mobile environmental monitoring station

Bordetella phage BPP-1.

New Drawings Show the Strange Beauty of Phages, the Bacteria Slayers

Phage viruses rearrange genes, prey on bacteria and maintain microbial diversity. Can we harness them to do our bidding?

Use Virtual Reality to Eliminate That Pain in Your Neck

Altering visual perceptions can trick the brains of chronic sufferers so they can enjoy pain-free motion

Snack first, then try on that cardigan.

Hunger Makes You Buy More Stuff, Even If It's Not Food

Whether you're shopping at the mall or online, having the munchies will compel you to purchase extraneous things

What Physics Tells Us About Making the Perfect Chocolate

Like carbon, the treat can take on many crystalline forms, so a master chocolatier must know how to temper it in just the right way

Imagining the future of artificial hearts.

Help for the Brokenhearted: Wearable, Biosynthetic and 'Beatless' Artificial Hearts

Cow-machine hybrids and continuous-flow technologies are helping people survive devastating heart failure

Your big toe is an example of how "boundary conditions" can affect the curvature of a nail.

Toenail Physics Explains Why Big Toes Are More Likely to Suffer Ingrown Nails

The delicate balancing act between stresses of growth and adhesion can help demystify some painful nail disorders

The 2014-15 flu vaccine is here, but the CDC warns that it's not as effective as hoped.

A Universal Flu Vaccine May Be On the Horizon

Choosing the viral targets for the seasonal flu vaccine is a gamble. Sometimes, like this year, the flu wins

Social media may be more relaxing than anticipated.

Social Media Is Not Making You a Ball of Stress

But perhaps unsurprisingly, Facebook and Twitter can cause stress to spread when bad things happen to friends and family

A handful of promising drug candidates?

A New Antibiotic Found in Dirt Can Kill Drug-Resistant Bacteria

Tests in mice show that the new drug works against numerous nasty diseases and should stay viable for decades

Resolve not to have a grocery store overload.

Many Households Buy More Food in January Than During the Holidays

New Year's resolutions to eat better lead many people to buy health food in addition to a continued junk food glut

Puberty Is Beginning Earlier in Girls, So What Can Parents Do?

The authors of a new book about the earlier onset of female puberty explain the evidence and offer advice

Science can help you avoid a holiday gift faux pas.

How to Give the Best Gifts, According to Science

Researchers are unwrapping the science behind gift giving, from the value of simplicity to the quality of the bow on top

A light therapy session in a German clinic.

The Dangers of Winter Darkness: Weak Bones, Depression and Heart Trouble

Long periods without sunshine can play a role in a surprising variety of physical and mental disorders

Frost on a sprig of European mistletoe.

Medical Mistletoe: Can the Holiday Plant Really Fight Cancer?

In some countries, cancer patients take mistletoe injections to ease symptoms, but the exact effects of the extracts are still up for debate

"Once more unto the breach, dear friends … "

Shopping on Black Friday Makes You Feel Like a Well-Loved Warrior

A powerful cocktail of social bonding and competitive adventure will compel more than 95 million people to hit the stores on one day

Probably not a picky eater.

Why Are You a Picky Eater? Blame Genes, Brains and Breast Milk

The complicated science behind picky eating is giving experts plenty of food for thought

Ice Age humans left their footprints across what is now Willandra Lakes in southeastern Australia.

How Climate Change May Have Shaped Human Evolution

Evidence is building that past climate change may have forged some of the defining traits of humanity

A coffee roaster does a taste test in Los Angeles.

Five Coffee Mysteries the Bean’s Genes May Crack

The newly sequenced coffee genome might reveal the origins of caffeine and pave the way for better-tasting, healthier brews

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