AI needs to face up to its invisible worker problem

Many of the most successful and widely used machine learning models are trained with the help of thousands of low-paid gig workers. Millions of people around the world earn money on…

What’s on the GMO menu: fast-growing salmon and slow-swimming tuna

A genetically modified salmon will become the first GM food animal to go on sale in the US, according to its maker, AquaBounty, possibly launching an era of steaks and…

Gene editing has made pigs immune to a deadly epidemic

When covid-19 began to race around the world, countries closed businesses and told people to stay home. Many thought that would be enough to stop the coronavirus. If we had…

The chart that shows how we’ll get back to normal

A covid-19 chart that’s been shared thousands of times is dramatizing just how well vaccines against the disease can work and how we might get out of pandemic hell. Today,…

How our data encodes systematic racism

I’ve often been told, “The data does not lie.” However, that has never been my experience. For me, the data nearly always lies. Google Image search results for “healthy skin”…

Why more, earlier voting means greater election security—not less

The pandemic made for a lot of differences in this year’s US elections, including vastly expanded access to mail-in ballots and early voting. That upended the Election Day rituals many…

SpaceX’s Starship has flown a record 12.5 km into the air

SpaceX today pulled off the first ever high-altitude (well, high-ish) flight of Starship, the rocket the company hopes will one day take humans to the moon and Mars. Although the…

Facebook should be broken up, says US government

What happened: The Federal Trade Commission has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Facebook for its “anticompetitive conduct and unfair methods of competition.” That includes its 2012 acquisition of Instagram and…

Hackers accessed documents on covid-19 vaccines

The European Medicines Agency, which has been evaluating covid-19 vaccines produced by Pfizer and BioNTech, says it was hit with a cyberattack.  Just days after a coronavirus vaccine from Pfizer…

What are the ingredients of Pfizer’s covid-19 vaccine?

Facebook said on December 3 that it would remove posts with false claims or conspiracy theories about what’s in the covid-19 vaccines that everyone’s counting on. In the face of…

This is what NASA wants to do when it gets to the moon

When NASA finally gets back to the moon—probably not till sometime after 2024—it will start the groundwork for the first extraterrestrial colony in the history of human civilization, and for…

Web scraping is a tool, not a crime

As a reporter who can code, I can easily collect information from websites and social media accounts to find stories. All I need to do is write a few lines…

This super energy dense battery could nearly double the range of electric vehicles

Scientists have long seen lithium-metal batteries as an ideal technology for energy storage, leveraging the lightest metal on the periodic table to deliver cells jam-packed with energy. But researchers and…

A UK woman aged 90 was the first in the world to receive the Pfizer vaccine today

The news: The UK started vaccinating its population against covid-19 today, becoming the first country to start distributing the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, less than a week after it approved it. It…

“You can’t just give people more data and expect them to act differently”

Digital contact tracing apps first emerged early in the pandemic. They’d let you know if you’d been around anyone who tested positive, and they worked on a regular personal smartphone.…