Are Computers Good for Writers?

Is the computer really a better pencil? Will it lead to better writing? Just about every other new writing instrument has been seen as a threat to literacy and a corrupter of youth.

Hardware and software for word processing have evolved to the point where the computer screen gives quite a good imitation of what words will look like on the printed page...Now that we have finally attained this long-sought goal of ink-on-paper verisimilitude, the future prospects of paper itself seem a little tattered around the edges. Much text today is not only written on the screen but also read on the screen. Few Web pages, blogs, e-mail messages or Facebook updates are ever printed out, and newspapers, magazines and books are distributed online in editions designed to be read on computers or on more-specialized devices such as the Kindle. Virtual paper is displacing the real thing.

Car culture and suburban sprawl create rifts in society, claims study

New research links urban planning and political polarization.

Pixabay
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Canadian researchers find that excessive reliance on cars changes political views.
  • Decades of car-centric urban planning normalized unsustainable lifestyles.
  • People who prefer personal comfort elect politicians who represent such views.
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Scientists reverse hair loss by making scalp "smell" sandalwood

It turns out the human scalp has an olfactory receptor that seems to play a crucial role in regulating hair follicle growth and death.

Photo: malehmann via Flickr
Surprising Science
  • Scientists treated scalp tissue with a chemical that mimics the odor of sandalwood.
  • This chemical bound to an olfactory receptor in the scalp and stimulated hair growth.
  • The treatment could soon be available to the public.
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NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller on ​the multiple dimensions of space and human sexuality

Science and the squishiness of the human mind. The joys of wearing whatever the hell you want, and so much more.

Flickr / 13winds
Think Again Podcasts
  • Why can't we have a human-sized cat tree?
  • What would happen if you got a spoonful of a neutron star?
  • Why do we insist on dividing our wonderfully complex selves into boring little boxes
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