From savoring a morning coffee to lighting a candle each night, people employ rituals all over the world. NPR science correspondent Shankar Vedantam speaks with behavior scientist Francesca Gino and Slate columnist William Saletan about the role of rituals in human life.
Last fall, Heather Liljengren was collecting the seeds of New York's native dune grasses. Within days, Hurricane Sandy wiped out the Rockaways' dunes and all their flora. Now, those seeds are growing plants likely to be used to restore the dunes and other natural environments around New York City.
The prize is sometimes called the "Nobel Prize for food and agriculture." And this year's winners include Monsanto executive Robert Fraley, a pioneer in genetically engineered crops. If there's a single person who personifies the company's controversial role in American agriculture, it's probably Fraley.
The White House and NASA want the public's help in hunting for asteroids that could potentially smash into Earth. They're also looking for a perfect space rock to capture so that astronauts could go there and study it.
A day at a museum promises fun for parents and kids alike. But for children who are on the autism spectrum, a seemingly simple museum exhibit may be too overwhelming to enjoy. Now, museums are coming up with ways to accommodate these visitors.
Conventional wisdom holds that men prefer younger women as mates because they're more fertile than older women. But a mathematical analysis suggests that this preference may be the cause of menopause rather than a consequence of it.
Thirty years ago Tuesday, Sally Ride became the first woman to fly in space. She was aboard the shuttle Challenger. Less than three years later, it would explode on takeoff, killing seven crew members.
An enterprising carpenter and a creative puppeteer teamed up on a do-it-yourself project to build a mechanical hand for a little boy. They created an inexpensive prosthetic and published their designs on the Internet. So far, over 100 children have been outfitted.
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