2500 Flaming Gas Burners Make This One Awesome Audio Visualiser

Remember Winamp’s wonderful audio visualisers? They let you see your music through trippy ever-evolving patterns, but they couldn’t hold a flame to this Pyro Board, which trades animations for a glowing grid of flames produced by 2500 gas burners. Awesome first, safety second.


Why Thyroid Conditions Are So Bad

It seems like just about everyone knows someone with a thyroid condition. Their symptoms can sometimes be wide ranging, and it can leave you a little confused about what exactly it does and why it can cause so many problems. In an effort to put this ignorance to bed, let’s take a little closer look at this inexplicable little endocrine gland.


A Brief History Of Beer

Beer brewing and drinking are activities that have been part of the human experience seemingly since the dawn of civilisation. Around 10,000 years ago, mankind began to move away from living life as nomadic hunter gatherers, and began settling down in one spot to farm the land. Grain, a vital ingredient in beer making, was cultivated by these new agricultural societies.


10 Animals That Might Become Extinct In The Next 10 Years

Chances are you won’t see these rare animals at the local zoo, because their population is down to the last hundreds. In some cases, it’s much worse than that with only a couple left.


The Humble Supermaterial: There's More To Tin Than Cans

Hear mention of tin and your thoughts instantly turn to cans stuffed with limp vegetables. But while the metal has become ubiquitous thanks to its use in convenience food packaging, it actually serves all manner of exotic purposes — and it could just change the future of electronics.


This Bionic Ankle Walks Like It's Alive

The human lower leg is a marvel of biological engineering — it lets you have a long, strong stride while minimising exertion and joint strain. But conventional spring and hydraulically-driven prosthesis worn by amputees offer no such benefit and can cause osteoarthritis-inducing skeletal strains. The BiOM T2 system aims to rectify that.


A 3D-Printed Ultrasound Cast That Looks Awesome And Heals You Faster

Old-fashioned casts are nasty, a festering stinksleeves that you wear like a medieval torture device for what seems like forever. 3D-printed casts take care of the smell and itch issues, and now Deniz Karasahin has designed the next step: a custom cast with an ultrasound device to speed up bone healing.


SpaceX Is Sending Dinosaur Microbes To The Space Station

The SpaceX Dragon capsule that recently left Earth for the International Space Station is carrying many an important item: a new laser communication system, coffee (which they just ran out of!), a planter for fresh produce, and billions and billions of microbes swabbed from dinosaur bones, sneakers, and spacecraft clean rooms. Over the next few days, we’ll find out how well these bacteria grow in space.


Using Plastic Surgery To Keep Astronauts Human On Long Space Missions

A brief exchange in the back of last week’s issue of New Scientist asks: “I understand that the lines and sagging skin we acquire as we age are due to the sun and gravity. If I lived in a space station in zero or microgravity away from the sun, would I stay looking young?” A perfectly innocuous, if even somewhat boring, question — but the answer, supplied by a reader from London, touches on some fascinating terrain.


How That Teenage Stowaway Survived The Flight In A Wheel Well

By now, you’ve likely heard the insane story of a 16-year-old boy who survived a five-hour flight from California to Hawaii hidden in a wheel well. How the hell did his body make it through sub-zero temperatures with little oxygen? Probably by going into “suspended animation”, a strange, frozen state that’s about as close you can get to death without dying.