Generations of physicists have claimed that time is an illusion. But not all agree. In his book Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe, theoretical physicist Lee Smolin argues that time exists--and he says time is key to understanding the evolution of the universe.
Scientists reported this week in the journal Cell that they had used somatic cell nuclear transfer techniques to create a source of embryonic stem cells from the skin cells of a patient. George Daley, director of the stem cell transplantation program at Boston Children's Hospital, and Josephine Johnston of the Hastings Center discuss the research.
A report from the UN Food and Agriculture Organization says insects offer a huge potential for improving the world's food security. Peter Menzel, co-author of Man Eating Bugs, describes some insect-based cuisine and the western aversion to creepy-crawly snacks.
In Brilliant Blunders: From Darwin to Einstein, astrophysicist Mario Livio explores the colossal errors committed by scientific greats, from chemist Linus Pauling's botched model of DNA, to Charles Darwin's failure to understand genetics--the very mechanism of natural selection.
Nobel Prize-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman is the latest subject in our Desktop Diaries series, although he has no desk. Kahneman, professor emeritus at Princeton University, won the Nobel Prize in economic sciences in 2002 for his research with the late Amos Tversky on our sometimes irrational intuitions and how they affect decision-making.
As the summer travel season approaches, air travel provides a barometer for the health of the U.S. economy — and airlines report they're having a good year. After years of financial troubles, industry representatives hope U.S. travelers are more willing to fly. NPR senior business editor Marilyn Geewax explains what summer travel tells us about the health of the economy.
Days after the marathon bombing, officials established the One Fund for Boston to assist victims and their families. Attorney Ken Feinberg, who managed similar funds after Sept. 11 and Virginia Tech and is managing this fund, says there's no easy way to decide who gets how much of the $30 million that's been donated.
As the death toll in Syria climbs and critics blast the Obama administration for not taking more decisive action, former ambassador Christopher Hill points instead to a failure of diplomacy in an op-ed in the New York Times. Hill talks about what the U.S. faces in facilitating talks between the regime and Syrian rebels.
In the latest installment of our "Looking Ahead" series, NPR science correspondent and Radiolab co-host Robert Krulwich talks about reporting on big ideas in imaginative ways, the old days at NPR and what he's wondering about today.
New Yorker staff writer Susan Orlean has spent years trying to find the right desk chair. She considered a pricy museum-worthy chair, a kneeling chair and a yoga ball before ditching the seat altogether for a treadmill desk — and discovering the health benefits of moving at work.
In the latest installment of our "Looking Ahead" series, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former New York Times Middle East bureau chief Chris Hedges talks about the decisions that led him on his career path, and where he sees the country going in the next decade.
About a third of people who attempt suicide leave a note. John Pestian and others at Cincinnati Children's Hospital are merging psychology and computer analysis to see if such notes can help diagnose suicidal tendencies in the living.
As questions linger about the official response to the Benghazi attack, the White House faces new challenges related to probes by the IRS and the Justice Department. Political Junkie Ken Rudin discusses the week in politics and the future of the Democratic Party with former DNC chair Howard Dean.
The ongoing conflict on the Korean Peninsula is the legacy of the Korean War, which helps explain relations between the north and south. In a new book, historian Victor Davis Hanson discusses how the strategies of U.S. Gen. Matthew Ridgway helped to turn around what appeared to be "a lost war."
Telemedicine is nothing new, but advancements in technology have made it even more widely available. Neurologists can now treat Parkinson's patients from miles away, therapists can reach service members overseas, and general practitioners can work in rural areas without actually going there at all.
NPR's Neal Conan reads from listener comments on previous show topics, including postcards from New Orleans and our talk with astronaut Buzz Aldrin.