‘Flash Droughts’ Are the Midwest’s Next Big Climate Threat

‘Flash Droughts’ Are the Midwest’s Next Big Climate Threat

Fast-moving droughts like this one are developing more and more quickly as climate change pushes temperatures to new extremes, recent research indicates—adding a new threat to the dangers of pests, flooding, and more long-term drought that farmers in the US already face.

Tonga eruption discoveries defy expectations

Tonga eruption discoveries defy expectations

NIWA’s research vessel, RV Tangaroa , has returned from a month-long expedition as part of the Nippon Foundation-funded Tonga Eruption Seabed Mapping Project (TESMaP), where scientists were studying the effects of January’s eruption of Hunga Tonga–Hunga Ha'apai (HT – HH).

The Jumping Slugs of the Pacific Northwest

The Jumping Slugs of the Pacific Northwest

The new species of jumping slug was found in the same area and habitat as TNC’s Ball Creek Ranch Preserve, Idaho.

Scientists Are Racing to Understand the Fury of Tonga’s Volcano

Scientists Are Racing to Understand the Fury of Tonga’s Volcano

Ten-thousand miles away in England, Simon Proud, a satellite data researcher at the University of Oxford, began to monitor the twitching volcano using an array of satellites.Then, early in the morning on January 14 local Tongan time, a 12-mile-high plume of ash pierced the sky.

The Fashion Industry Could Reduce Emissions—if It Wanted To

The Fashion Industry Could Reduce Emissions—if It Wanted To

In 2019, some of the largest fashion brands in the world put their names on science-based climate targets, saying they would reduce their greenhouse gas emissions 30 percent by 2030 in order to stay in line with a UN-endorsed pathway to keeping the climate from warming more than 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Microplastics May Be Cooling—and Heating—Earth’s Climate

Microplastics May Be Cooling—and Heating—Earth’s Climate

The good news is that microplastics may be reflecting a tiny bit of the sun’s energy back into space, which would actually cool the climate ever so slightly.

Why Do We Hate Trash Birds?

Why Do We Hate Trash Birds?

For an American whose template of “city” birds included pigeons and house sparrows, seeing an ibis strut beneath skyscrapers and menace city workers for a french fry is about as Australian as it gets.And it’s why endangered species captivate our attention, while the ubiquitous pigeon is a trash bird.

Carbon-Capturing Sunglasses Offer a View of Fashion's Future

Carbon-Capturing Sunglasses Offer a View of Fashion's Future

Nike, which says 70 percent of its emissions are wrapped up in its materials, is one of many large fashion brands that have committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 30 percent by 2030.Herrema said the idea that would eventually lead to AirCarbon came to him while he was at Princeton in the early 2000s.

Valley Fever Is Spreading Through a Hotter, Drier Western US

Valley Fever Is Spreading Through a Hotter, Drier Western US

By the time his primary care doctor discovered a 6-centimeter mass in his lung, Jesse was starting to think that whatever disease he had might actually end up killing him.Jesse got lucky that day.

In Kenya, Influencers Are Hired to Spread Disinformation

In Kenya, Influencers Are Hired to Spread Disinformation

Apparently driven by a number of faceless bots, and retweeted by a series of sock puppet accounts, the deluge of tweets cast suspicion on both the competence and integrity of senior High Court of Kenya judges that had just shot down the Constitutional Amendments Bill of 2021.

Hurricanes, Solar Storms, and the Fight to Keep the Power On

Hurricanes, Solar Storms, and the Fight to Keep the Power On

This week on Gadget Lab, we talk with WIRED senior writer Lily Hay Newman about what caused the power problems in New Orleans, and how humanity can prepare for unexpected disasters (like solar flares) that might come in the near future.

The End of Trash Fish

The End of Trash Fish

My friend, a visiting fish biologist, was thrilled to catch species new to him, like chiselmouth, largescale sucker and northern pikeminnow.It’s time to put the term “trash fish” in the trash, where it belongs, and give these fish the respect (and management) they deserve.

25 Best Deals From Winter Clearance Sales (2021): Outdoor Apparel, Backpacks, and More

25 Best Deals From Winter Clearance Sales (2021): Outdoor Apparel, Backpacks, and More

When I got into mountain climbing years ago and had to get all the equipment, it happened to be during the annual end-of-winter sales, and I lucked into some terrific prices.Updated March 11, 2021: REI's winter clearance sale is over, but many items are still discounted.

The ‘Lamborghini’ of Chariots Was Just Unearthed Near Pompeii

The ‘Lamborghini’ of Chariots Was Just Unearthed Near Pompeii

Archaeologists in Italy have unearthed an elaborately decorated, intact four-wheeled ceremonial chariot near the ruins of the Roman city of Pompeii, famously destroyed when Mount Vesuvius catastrophically erupted in 79 CE, BBC News reports.

The Murder Hornets Nature Doc Disguised as a True-Crime Show

The Murder Hornets Nature Doc Disguised as a True-Crime Show

Attack of the Murder Hornets follows McFall as he joins a loose alliance of beekeepers and scientists in the Pacific Northwest who hunt for the nests of these invasive insects, racing to remove them from the local ecosystem before they wreak havoc.

The ‘Girl Games’ of the ’90s Were Fun and Feminist

The ‘Girl Games’ of the ’90s Were Fun and Feminist

And so, in October 1996, Mattel Media released Barbie Fashion Designer on CD-ROM.Barbie Fashion Designer “really changed the conversation,” says Yasmin B.Before Barbie, “very few games thought about the play space for girls.”.

The Best Home Emergency Kit Gear (2021): Flashlights, Stoves, Chargers, and More

The Best Home Emergency Kit Gear (2021): Flashlights, Stoves, Chargers, and More

Photograph: FenixThe Fenix E20 V2 is my top pick for an affordable emergency flashlight, but the ThruNite Archer 2A V3 ($30) is another solid choice.If you're using alkaline batteries, remove them from the flashlight if it's going to sit unused for a long time, otherwise they'll leak and cause problems.

The Amazon Case Signals a Tougher Stance on Gig Economy Firms

The Amazon Case Signals a Tougher Stance on Gig Economy Firms

But the FTC alleges that by late 2016, Amazon had begun to use an algorithm to determine new base-pay rates by workers’ locations and began to subsidize that base pay with customer tips.

The Best VPNs to Protect Yourself Online

The Best VPNs to Protect Yourself Online

As long as WebRTC is enabled (and it is by default in most browsers), websites can view your actual IP address even when you use a VPN.Mullvad offers apps for every major platform (the Android app is in beta), as well as routers.

Flash Is Dead—but Not Gone

Flash Is Dead—but Not Gone

On January 12, Adobe took things a step further, triggering a kill switch it had been distributing in Flash updates for months that blocks content from running in the player—essentially rendering the software inoperable.

A Farewell to Adobe Flash—and the Messy, Glorious Web

A Farewell to Adobe Flash—and the Messy, Glorious Web

Flash facilitated the personalization associated with Web 1.0 relics like Geocities, with users encouraged to manually “code, design, and manage” their website, in the words of architecture critic Kate Wagner, a state of affairs replaced by the corporate, professionally designed web that we cannot customize but must experience.

The Secret History of the First Microprocessor, the F-14, and Me

The Secret History of the First Microprocessor, the F-14, and Me

Ray and I reconnected over the summer, and after he told me his story, I wanted to learn more about the Central Air Data Computer and its place in history—and how his life might have branched around mine.

A Unique Alliance Could Help Warn Us of Toxic Algae

A Unique Alliance Could Help Warn Us of Toxic Algae

“The public didn’t know what the heck was going on,” says Vera Trainer, an oceanographer at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) who studies harmful algal blooms in the Pacific Northwest.Since then, toxic algal blooms that create domoic acid have continued to force the closure of state beaches.

31 Black Friday Phone and Tablet Deals We Love (2020)

31 Black Friday Phone and Tablet Deals We Love (2020)

And please note that our favorite Android phone is the Google Pixel 4A ($350).It's not discounted further for Black Friday but is still the best deal going.

An Engineer Gets 9 Years for Stealing $10M From Microsoft

An Engineer Gets 9 Years for Stealing $10M From Microsoft

In late 2017 and early 2018, he stole millions of dollars worth of Microsoft store credit and resold it online for bitcoin, which he then cashed out using Coinbase."The value of the bitcoin deposits to Kvashuk's Coinbase account generally correlated with the value of the purchased and redeemed [Microsoft credit]," the government argued.

The Perils of Moderating Depression on Social Media

The Perils of Moderating Depression on Social Media

Our most significant, and surprising, finding was that only 15 percent of users who post with the #depressed hashtag do so with what we call “real name” accounts (through which users share their name, pictures of themselves, and other identifying details).Most people using #depressed—76 percent of the accounts in our data set—do so pseudonymously to share humorous memes and inspirational content about mental health.

The Nintendo 3DS' Surprisingly Social Legacy

The Nintendo 3DS' Surprisingly Social Legacy

Aside from my housemates and a couple of over-friendly acquaintances, I didn’t know a lot of people, and certainly none who’d play video games with me.

How to Escape From a Volcano Eruption

How to Escape From a Volcano Eruption

The molten rock chunks blasted up and out will eventually cool and fall, and because the wind at both lower and higher altitudes over Vesuvius on August 24 blew south-southwest, they will drop on Pompeii.

ATM Hackers Have Picked Up Some Clever New Tricks

ATM Hackers Have Picked Up Some Clever New Tricks

Criminals have increasingly tuned their malware to manipulate even niche proprietary bank software to cash out ATMs, while still incorporating the best of the classics—including uncovering new remote attacks to target specific ATMs. During Black Hat, Kevin Perlow, the technical threat intelligence team lead at a large, private financial institution, analyzed two cash-out tactics that represent different current approaches to jackpotting.

Thieves Are Emptying ATMs Using a New Form of Jackpotting

Thieves Are Emptying ATMs Using a New Form of Jackpotting

In previous jackpotting attacks, the attached devices, known in the industry as black boxes, usually invoked programming interfaces contained in the ATM operating system to funnel commands that ultimately reached the hardware component that dispenses cash.