Today's programs for defending against missile attacks are less ambitious than the Reagan-era Star Wars efforts. But the new systems are still too easily foiled, and their deployment would slow arms cuts.
Collecting, selecting, and refining the stories that go online, web-based magazines are transforming the internet experience. But these embryonic publications don't yet fully exploit the new medium's potential-and their financial viability is in question.
Hubble Vision: Astronomy with the Hubble Telescope
Escape Velocity: Cyberculture at the End of the Century
Water may seem to be everywhere, but for a rising portion of the world's population, there may soon be hardly a drop to drink -or to use for growing food, supporting industries and cities, and preserving life-giving ecosystems.
During total eclipses of the sun, at least one ancient culture performed mass human sacrifice to placate the gods. While our understanding of these celestial phenomena has grown, the author rediscovers the scientific curiosity they engender.
A recent photography exhibit goes behind the closed doors of major laboratories to shed fascinating light on the research shaping modern life.
A variety of high-tech bomb detectors are under study, but certification, cost, and privacy dilemmas could keep them from your local airport.
One of the nation's foremost computer scientists, exasperated by the unfriendliness of today's computer systems, suggests what designers can do to make machines serve human needs--rather than the other way around.
Urban heat islands are not inevitable, but the product of dark roofs, black pavement, and loss of vegetation. A "cool communities" approach would lower air-conditioning use and make the air healthier.