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On the Cover

September-October 2010 Volume 98, Number 5

The National Ignition Facility (NIF) in California is a 192-beam laser that can produce 500 trillion watts of power in pulses that last 20 billionths of a second. ...


FEATURE ARTICLES

Evolution on a Frozen Continent *

David Lambert, Craig Millar, Siva Swaminathan, Carlo Baroni

Ancient-DNA studies of Adélie penguins combined with a detailed picture of a remarkable continent’s geological past provide a window on evolution


High-power Lasers *

Todd Ditmire

The invention of the laser 50 years ago has led to the latest generation of devices, with power bursts thousands of times that of the nation’s entire electrical grid


A Bigger, Better Brain *

Maddalena Bearzi, Craig Stanford

Observations of chimpanzees and dolphins strengthen the notion that humanlike intelligence may not be uniquely human


Gifts and Perils of Landslides

Kenneth Hewitt

Catastrophic rockslides and related landscape developments are an integral part of human settlement along upper Indus streams


* access restricted to members and subscribers


SCIENTISTS’ BOOKSHELF

Techno-Dystopia

Marilyn Lombardi

A review of The Cultural Logic of Computation, by David Golumbia. We are so much under the spell of technology, warns Golumbia, that it’s hard for us to even recognize the ethical, cultural and political costs of computing—let alone address them satisfactorily

See all book reviews for this issue.


DEPARTMENTS

MACROSCOPE

Zeroing in on Cancer

As targeted cancer therapies get more specific, the targets get rarer

Carlos F. Amábile-Cuevas

COMPUTING SCIENCE

The Great Principles of Computing

Computing may be the fourth great domain of science along with the physical, life and social sciences

Peter J. Denning

ENGINEERING

Hoover Dam Bypass*

A bridge's design becomes a special challenge when it shares scenery with an engineering icon

Henry Petroski

SLIDE SHOW

Rock Avalanches of the Upper Indus

Human settlements in northern Pakistan depend on the leveling effects of rock landslides. Here we present photographs of the region by Kenneth Hewitt, whose feature article appears in this issue

Kenneth Hewitt

MARGINALIA

Learning and Teaching Strategies

From personal experience and research comes advice on what works and why

Roald Hoffmann and Saundra Y. McGuire

SIGHTINGS

Hiding in Plain Sight

The architecture of neural fibers

Catherine Clabby

SCIENCE OBSERVER

Epic Science

At an international colloquium this September, researchers will tell the story of science poetry's evolution

Anna Lena Phillips

Royal Treatment

The Royal Society celebrates 350 years and a new president

The Editors

In the News

LETTERS TO THE EDITORS

A Thorium Future

Botanical Complexities

SIGMA XI TODAY (PDF)


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