We're On The Silk Road

Scientists are slowly unraveling the marvels and potential of silk, which is a liquid inside the organism so exquisitely producing it yet becomes a solid upon leaving it.

Silk has been around for 5,000 years and long used in sutures, yet its incredible potential for medical and other fields lies largely untapped territory. We are struggling to match the spider, silkworm and other insects in the biology of silk-making but among promising applications is "the idea of using silk as the basis for metamaterials, which can manipulate light or other electromagnetic radiation in ways that nature ordinarily cannot. By producing intricate structures in the films and depositing metal on them, metamaterial antennas may be produced that could be used inside the body as a means of monitoring health."

Why the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner won’t feature a comedian in 2019

It's the first time the association hasn't hired a comedian in 16 years.

(Photo by Anna Webber/Getty Images for Vulture Festival)
Culture & Religion
  • The 2018 WHCA ended in controversy after comedian Michelle Wolf made jokes some considered to be offensive.
  • The WHCA apologized for Wolf's jokes, though some journalists and many comedians backed the comedian and decried arguments in favor of limiting the types of speech permitted at the event.
  • Ron Chernow, who penned a bestselling biography of Alexander Hamilton, will speak at next year's dinner.
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How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
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A new study says alcohol changes how the brain creates memories

A study on flies may hold the key to future addiction treatments.

Scott Barbour/Getty Images
Mind & Brain
  • A new study suggests that drinking alcohol can affect how memories are stored away as good or bad.
  • This may have drastic implications for how addiction is caused and how people recall intoxication.
  • The findings may one day lead to a new form of treatment for those suffering from addiction.
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