Stage to Screen

The nation's top playwrights are turning increasingly to TV where producers are shooting programs on one or two sets to reduce costs as budgets are being squeezed.

The nation's top playwrights are turning increasingly to TV where producers are shooting programs on one or two sets to reduce costs as budgets are being squeezed. "'Theater is now viewed as a way of getting a staff writing job on TV,' says Warren Leight, the show runner and developer of 'Lights Out' who won a 1999 Tony Award for the jazz-inspired play 'Side Man.' 'For a lot of guys now, it's a means to an end. And the end is, 'How do I make a living as a writer?'' Many playwrights say television is a good fit for their talents, since it is often driven by dialogue rather than by the visual effects that dominate film. Recent TV writers include critically acclaimed playwrights—such as Marsha Norman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer of ''night, Mother' who wrote for last season's 'In Treatment' on HBO—and current theater darlings such as Jon Robin Baitz, who created ABC's long-running 'Brothers & Sisters' and will debut a new play on Broadway next season. In a tight economy, playwrights have emerged as key writers for episodes that feature only one or two locations—a cost-saving device known as a "bottle episode." These episodes have become increasingly necessary as producers are told to rein in costly, multiple-location shoots. Bottle-episode scripts tend to rely more on dialogue than sprawling action sequences in diverse settings.

A dark matter hurricane is crashing into Earth

Giving our solar system a "slap in the face"

Surprising Science
  • A stream of galactic debris is hurtling at us, pulling dark matter along with it
  • It's traveling so quickly it's been described as a hurricane of dark matter
  • Scientists are excited to set their particle detectors at the onslffaught
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Are we all multiple personalities of universal consciousness?

Bernardo Kastrup proposes a new ontology he calls “idealism” built on panpsychism, the idea that everything in the universe contains consciousness. He solves problems with this philosophy by adding a new suggestion: The universal mind has dissociative identity disorder.

We’re all one mind in "idealism." (Credit: Alex Grey)
Mind & Brain

There’s a reason they call it the “hard problem.” Consciousness: Where is it? What is it? No one single perspective seems to be able to answer all the questions we have about consciousness. Now Bernardo Kastrup thinks he’s found one. He calls his ontology idealism, and according to idealism, all of us and all we perceive are manifestations of something very much like a cosmic-scale dissociative identity disorder (DID). He suggests there’s an all-encompassing universe-wide consciousness, it has multiple personalities, and we’re them.

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New study reveals what time we burn the most calories

Once again, our circadian rhythm points the way.

Photo: Victor Freitas / Unsplash
Surprising Science
  • Seven individuals were locked inside a windowless, internetless room for 37 days.
  • While at rest, they burned 130 more calories at 5 p.m. than at 5 a.m.
  • Morning time again shown not to be the best time to eat.
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