The unexpected science of everyday things

Science is a mirror that reveals sometimes hidden, often unexpected and always astounding insights into everyday things and human life. Here we explore everything you always wanted to know about holidays, food, art, music, books, games, TV, film, education, urban life and crime — as well as human history, archaeology and anthropology.

Franklin, who was born 100 years ago, played a key role in the discovery of the structure of DNA. But her full story is much richer.
Catherine Meyers, Editor
Artifacts found in a Mexican cave are about 30,000 years old.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor
The Manhattan Project resulted in reactions both new and unforeseen.
Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator
The potentially world-destroying power of the atomic bomb moved many scientists to engage more directly with the public, an effort that continues to this day.
Peter Gwynne, Contributor
A selection of women and people of color who achieved remarkable things in science after working on the Manhattan Project.
Nala Rogers, Staff Writer
Highlights from our previous coverage of nuclear weapons and radiation.
Inside Science Staff
Movies, music and even candy wrappers helped people process what it meant to put the powers of gods in human hands.
Chris Gorski, Editor
Public art displayed this month reflects widespread calls for action.
Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator
Some students are continuing to learn while school doors are closed, but others may not be able to avoid losing ground.
Joel Shurkin, Contributor
Bird statuette, recovered from a refuse heap, more than doubles the age of the earliest known animal sculpture from East Asia.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor
Available data revealed that people of color were hospitalized 25% less often than white people after high-force arrests.
Nala Rogers, Staff Writer
What does the science say about the safety of America’s chicken farming practice?
Benjamin Plackett, Contributor