The Olympic Flame was lit from the sun's rays using a parabolic mirror, during the final dress rehearsal for the lighting ceremony at Ancient Olympia, in southwestern Greece, on Monday, Oct. 23, 2017.

Your Burning Questions About the Olympic Torch, Answered

Curious minds will want to know that the blaze is lit not with matches or a lighter, but using a method that dates to Ancient Greece

Every dazzling jump on the ice—like Yuzuru Hanyu's quadruple Lutz at the 2017 Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Moscow, Russia—requires a mastery of balance, rotational speed and angular momentum.

How Physics Keeps Figure Skaters Gracefully Aloft

Every twist, turn and jump relies on a mastery of complex physical forces

This Is the Largest Known Prime Number Yet

The newly discovered prime is 23 million digits long

The Ten Best Children's Books of 2017

Our picks are full of silly words, weird animals and unknown histories

The Ten Best Science Books of 2017

These books not only inspired awe and wonder—they helped us better understand the machinations of our world

The Ten Best STEM Toys of 2017

Kid tested and parent approved, these tech toys stand out for holiday wish lists

The formerly wobbly Millennium Bridge

What Makes Bridges Wobble? Your Awkward Walk

A new study asks: How many people does it takes to set a pedestrian bridge a-swaying?

Watch the Winners of the 2017 Dance Your Ph.D. Competition

From sea stars to mathematical braids, scientists translate their work into hot moves and killer choreography

The astrolabe is a rare and highly sophisticated navigational tool.

Rare Mariner’s Astrolabe Found in Shipwreck Near Oman

Contrary to some reports, it may not be the earliest-known marine navigational tool—but it's still a spectacular find

NASA Dedicates New Facility to Katherine Johnson, the Pioneering Mathematician of ‘Hidden Figures’

'I think they're crazy,' the 99-year-old jokingly said of the honor

Carbon Dating Reveals the History of Zero Is Older Than Previously Thought

An ancient text called the Bakhshali manuscript has bumped zero’s origin story back by 500 years

Newly found letters by Alan Turing

New Letters Show Alan Turing Wasn't a Fan of the U.S.A.

The groundbreaking mathematician and computer scientist who spent 2 years at Princeton wrote that he 'detests America' in newly found documents

This clay tablet written around the year 1800 B.C.E. may represent the oldest known use of trigonometry

Ancient Babylonian Tablet May Hold Earliest Examples of Trigonometry

If true, it would mean the ancient culture figured out this mathematical field more than a millennia before its known creation

An early adding machine, c. 1890, invented by William Seward Burroughs, grandfather of the beat writer.

How America’s First Adding Machine is Connected to ‘Naked Lunch’

William Seward Burroughs (no, not that one) was the first man to invent a commercially practical calculator

Pierre de Fermat left behind a truly tantalizing hint of a proof when he died—one that mathematicians struggled to complete for centuries.

The Romance of Fermat's Last Theorem

Fermat left a lot of theorems lying around. Mathematicians proved them all–except one

Napoleon Bonaparte was born on this day in 1769 in Corsica. As a young man at school, one instructor said that he "has always been distinguished for his application in mathematics."

Napoleon's Lifelong Interest in Science

Napoleon was a Frenchman of his time, which means he was interested in how science could do good–he just took it farther than most

Joseph Moxon, author of 'Mathematicks Made Easie,' was born on this day in 1627.

Is One A Number? According to ‘Mathematicks Made Easie,' Yes

The ancient Greeks, and people for almost 2,000 years after them, argued over whether one was a number

Parisite-(La), a carbon-bearing mineral that was predicted by computer model before it was discovered.

Big Data (and You) Could Help Find 1,500 Undiscovered Minerals

Researchers are using new tools to predict where to find new minerals as well as to locate new sources of valuable resources like copper

The United States's version of the Imperial system is based on an older British version.

America Has Been Struggling With the Metric System For More Than 200 Years

The United States is the one of the world's only holdouts at this point, but it could have been the first country outside of France to adopt the system

Maryam Mirzakhani

Remembering the Brilliant Maryam Mirzakhani, the Only Woman to Win a Fields Medal

The Stanford professor investigated the mathematics of curved surfaces, writing many groundbreaking papers

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