What would you do with an extra thumb? Master that tricky guitar chord? Perhaps become a volleyball pro or an expert shadow puppeteer?
Scientists and engineers have long been interested in augmenting the human body with extra limbs or fingers. We’ve previously seen drummers with three arms, and robotic sixth fingers for stroke patients. Now, a project called The Third Thumb has shown how the brain adapts to an extra body part.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
LIGHT CALIFORNIA, USA
Human Augmentation Rewires The Brain
Scientists discover what happens to our neural circuitry when we learn to use robotic upgrades
The Next Giant Leaps
From spider robots to antennas on the Cornish coast, these UK-based projects are laying the groundwork for a permanent station on the Moon
Covid-19 After Lockdown
As the UK gradually comes out of lockdown, what do the coming months have in store?
Great Balls Of Fire
Going behind the scenes at East Anglia airbase RAF Marham to get up close to the new F-35, the first fighter jet that does (most of) the flying for pilots
The Rise Of The Cat Burglar
They scaled walls, climbed through lofty windows, and preyed on the grandest mansions in the land. Eloise Moss introduces the high-climbing criminals who stole Britons’ jewellery – and sometimes their hearts – in the 1920s and 30s
A Medieval King As You've Never Seen Him Before
The inner workings of Henry III’s mind are laid bare in a unique collection of letters that have survived from the 13th century. David Carpenter, who has written a major new biography on Henry, presents seven insights that these documents give us into the king
Okavango Delta, Botswana
First Studies From The Largest-Ever Human Genome Database Released
The Genome Aggregation Database has collected 15,708 genomes and 125,748 exomes (the protein-coding part of the genome) to help shed light on how genetic mutations can lead to disease
What Pop Psychology Gets Wrong
Power corrupts, crowds are violent, and depression is just a chemical imbalance. Or are they? Classic psychology theories often have a nice ring to them, creating a mythology that persists throughout the media, cinema, and literature. But new research is revealing that the human mind isn’t as simple as we’d like to think
The 5G Factor
The next generation of telecommunications is coming to a hotel near you – and changing the stay as we know it
Pittsburgh Turns To Technology As A New Economic Force
Pittsburgh turns to technology as a new economic force.
Paging Dr. Robot: Artificial Intelligence Moves Into Care
The next time you get sick, your care may involve a form of the technology people use to navigate road trips or pick the right vacuum cleaner online.
Science Pioneers - Bringing Us Robots, Renewable Power And Food Made From Air
Robot co-workers, lifesaving A.I., and food made from the air we breathe. These innovators are engineering the future.
Can 5G Save The Planet?
Climate Change’s Unlikely Ally
Making It On Mars
If humans want to create a lasting presence on the Red Planet, they’ll have to live off the dirt beneath their feet.
Inside Uber's Innovation
What does success look like at Uber? The company has famously had its share of scandals, and its IPO earlier this year disappointed investors, but in a letter to his staff, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi wrote that “our true north will be determined over the long term.” Much of that long-term vision is explored here, in a recently renovated industrial complex in San Francisco called Pier 70, which once housed shipbuilders and ironworkers but is now home to Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group. The employees in this space work on projects far outside Uber’s core ride-hailing business—they’re designing and developing self-driving vehicles, plans for aviation sharing, and the company’s JUMP bikes and scooters. And they get out of the office a lot: Working on transportation often means going along for the ride.
AI will bring many wonders. It may also destabilize everything from nuclear détente to human friendships. We need to think much harder about how to adapt.
Should You Buy STEM Toys For Your Kids?
As Joey Fortuna found out, it doesn’t matter how educational a toy is if kids don’t want to play with it.
The Stock-Buy Back Swindle
American corporations are spending trillions of dollars to repurchase their own stock. The practice is enriching CEOs—at the expense of everyone else.