economics
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Moneyball Could Offer Winning Strategy For Drug Development

Nearly one-third of drugs in development ultimately fail during clinical trials because the side effects are just too severe. Researchers at Cornell University have developed a promising new AI tool that better predicts which drug candidates are likely to be too toxic — and it’s based on the Oakland A’s winning strategy, immortalised in the blockbuster book and movie Moneyball.


We Can Learn A Lot From The Economics Of Star Trek

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the hugely popular sci-fi franchise Star Trek — arguably one of the profoundly influential fictional series of the last century. It’s also the 500th anniversary of Sir Thomas More’s classic work, Utopia, offering his vision of an ideal society. For Manu Saadia, that’s a fitting coincidence: “The world of Star Trek is an economic Utopia.”


A Breakdown Of How The US Spends Every Food Dollar 

The USDA has released an update to its “food dollar” breakdown — a division of a single dollar into the exact amount every link in the chain receives. So what’s new in the latest data from 2014, over last year’s update? There’s a series of changes, all of which seem to trend towards the same point: America is cooking for itself less and less.


What Would The World Look Like If Half Of All Jobs Were Held By Robots?

Numerous intelligent people have now claimed that within the next few decades, robots will automate half of all existing jobs. Whether or not that will pan out — or whether you’re in the luckless 50 per cent — will only be determined by time. But either way, what would that world look like?


Most US Ports Are Still Woefully Unprepared To Welcome The New Generation Of Megaships

On the day after Christmas, the largest container ship to call at a US port will stop by the Port of Los Angeles, the largest port in the US. But it’s largely just a PR event: Like many US ports, the Port of LA is not completely ready to welcome this size megaship, which will soon be standard on the high seas.


Why It's So Hard To Change Minds About Refugees

Fleeing violence and starvation in their native country, the refugees arrived in their new home only to be ridiculed in the press, subject to overt racism, and faced with persecution in their places of worship. Sound like recent headlines? This was the reality for the first Irish refugees to come to the US. It hasn’t gotten much better in the last 150 years, either in the US or around the world.


It's Perfectly Normal To Live With Your Parents

A recent survey from Pew Research found that 18-34 year-olds in the US are living with their parents for much longer than any generation since the 1960s. 43% of men and 37% of women in this age group are living at home. Commentators on last night’s PBS News Hour called it “the new normal.” But it’s actually the same old normal. The idea of moving out has been an aberration for decades.


Are We Recycling Too Much Of Our Trash?

A recent credible study suggests the amount of waste Americans dispose in landfills each year is over twice what the EPA had been estimating.


The 25th Ig Nobel Awards Were The Greatest Moment In The History Of (Silly) Science

For years, the Ig Nobel Awards have been famous for celebrating the most offbeat and ludicrous forms of scientific discovery. And last night, I was lucky enough to attend the 2015 Ig Nobel ceremony, because a friend was the proud winner of an Ig Nobel.


How Much Money Would It Take To Be Batman?

Is it possible to be Batman? OK, better question, who could afford the technology to be Batman? Could we even make much of what we see being used by Batman in the Dark Knight movies?


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