New Theory Claims Yawning Evolved To Help Humans Eat Insects

According to Emma Kowal of Harvard University, yawning evolved in our hunter-gatherer ancestors to be a highly efficient method of bug-consumption. Her argument is thoroughly and impressively researched, logically presented, undeniably captivating, and hilariously wrong. » 2/23/15 1:47pm 2/23/15 1:47pm

Seth Davis Promotes His Mom's Hoax Cancer Cures

There have never been more options for those convinced that the medical establishment is hiding secrets from them. Look at the Google ads running down the sidebar of just about any website you visit, and you're almost certain to see ads about "natural" cures—gluten-free diets and alkaline water, superfoods and… » 2/19/15 2:11pm 2/19/15 2:11pm

Our Ancestors Wore Babies Into Battle

According to MIT graduate student Tomer Ullman, humanity's early ancestors harnessed the "natural adrenaline boost" brought on by the sound of wailing babies by strapping infants to their bodies and wearing them into battle. » 9/14/14 1:00pm 9/14/14 1:00pm

1 in 5 journal articles have fraudulent authorship

When it comes to scientific or medical research, we like to believe the authors of a paper stand behind their work — but what if the actual authors aren't really listed? » 11/04/11 12:40pm 11/04/11 12:40pm

America used bad science to justify torture

A group of physicians and human rights activist claim that the United States government used shoddy and intentionally biased science in order to downgrade what was considered torture to "enhanced interrogation techniques." » 1/07/11 10:22am 1/07/11 10:22am

Study that linked autism and vaccines was "an elaborate fraud"

British doctor Andrew Wakefield already lost his medical license over his faulty research linking vaccines and autism, but now a new report says his 1998 paper, published in the Lancet, was actually fraudulent. » 1/06/11 9:00am 1/06/11 9:00am

Which science fiction films have the best and worst science, according…

Roland Emmerich's 2012 has the worst science in a science fiction film, according to NASA's experts — followed by Armageddon, Volcano, The Sixth Day and Chain Reaction. So what were the films with the best science, according to NASA? » 1/03/11 11:43am 1/03/11 11:43am

How can I be a more awesome crackpot?

Have you resolved this New Year to reveal your Theory of Everything to the scientific world, but aren't sure how to do it in a maximally off-putting and confusing way? In this week's "Ask a Physicist," we'll find out how. » 12/29/10 9:00am 12/29/10 9:00am

When science narratives go bad

In the following essay, Jennifer Ouellette explores what happens when otherwise normal science documentaries attempt to give their topics dramatic flourish...and fail hard. » 7/03/10 3:47pm 7/03/10 3:47pm

Terry Pratchett Explains Why Doctor Who Is Ludicrous

Doctor Who shouldn't really be called science fiction, says author Terry Pratchett. It's "ludicrous and breaks most of the laws of narrative," he adds, in a tongue-in-cheek but fairly bracing critique. Guards! Guards? » 5/03/10 6:00pm 5/03/10 6:00pm

Second Best "Outrunning Cold" Scene In Movie History

Jeff Fahey and his random scummy colleague have just a few seconds to get to their underground bunker before the Earth's temperature reaches... Absolute Zero! Yes, the temperature is going to be colder than space. But they can outrun it! » 4/29/10 5:25pm 4/29/10 5:25pm

Scientist To Hollywood: Stop Making Shit Up

Physicist Sidney Perkowitz has one simple request for scifi filmmakers: please break the laws of physics only once per movie. He insists this for Tinseltown's own good, as audiences' disbelief can be only be suspended so far. » 2/22/10 11:46am 2/22/10 11:46am

Which Movies Really Have The Best And Worst Science?

The debate over bad science in science-fiction movies has gotten a major new source of ammunition: Phil Plait, writing for Discover Magazine, has rounded up a fairly definitive list of the best and worst moments in movie science. » 1/23/10 3:00pm 1/23/10 3:00pm

Physicists to FlashForward: You Are Full Of Crap

On physics-gone-haywire show FlashForward, characters recently suggested that an accelerator in Palo Alto, CA might have caused a worldwide blackout that killed millions by conducting "proton-driven plasma-wakefield acceleration" experiments. Now scientists at the real accelerator in Palo Alto have responded. » 12/11/09 11:59am 12/11/09 11:59am

Everything that Cures or Prevents Cancer (According to the Media)

Can't recall which items the media claims prevent cancer and those that cause it? Kill or Cure takes aim at bad science journalism with its tongue-in-cheek index of items the Daily Mail links to cancer. [via Metafilter, Image from SMBC] » 8/31/09 3:12pm 8/31/09 3:12pm

CERN Is The Front Line In Science Fiction's War Against Science

CERN, home of the notorious Large Hadron Collider, threatened destruction (via anti-matter) in the recent movie Angels And Demons and (via ghosts) in a recent Torchwood radio play. But CERN is just one example of how science fiction demonizes science. » 7/14/09 12:00pm 7/14/09 12:00pm

Clever New Breast Gadgets Can't Support Their Claims

A bevy of terrible contraptions have been concocted lately for the benefit of our breasts. Here are a few of the more recent "WTF get the away from me" over-the-shoulder boulder-holder gadgets. » 6/24/09 8:00am 6/24/09 8:00am

Teen with Home Chemistry Lab Arrested for Meth, Bombs

Click to view A Canadian college student majoring in chemistry built himself a home lab - and discovered that trying to do science in your own home quickly leads to accusations of drug-making and terrorism. » 12/27/08 8:16pm 12/27/08 8:16pm

Computer-Generated Paper Accepted for Prestigious Technical Conference

A prankster who submitted a computer-generated research paper to the International Conference on Computer Science and Software Engineering discovered that not only was his fake paper accepted - its "author" is to chair a panel. » 12/24/08 12:00pm 12/24/08 12:00pm