Our Small Cousins: Rewriting Human Evolution

INDONESIAN and Australian archaeologists (Nature, October 28, 2004) have found a set of six small skeletons in a cave in the island of Flores, which is causing a re-look at the humankind’s evolutionary history. The … Read more

The Number Sense: Small Numbers Have Large Impact

A FAIRLY technical paper in Science Express, August 19, on number sense amongst an obscure tribe in the Amazons numbering only about 200 has ignited a huge controversy. Briefly, Peter Gordon, a researcher found that … Read more

Olympics And The Limits To Human Performance

THE greatest sporting spectacle is now underway in Athens. The Olympic games are a test of the limits to which the human body can be made to perform. The motto of the Olympic Games – … Read more

Private Space Flight

THE successful flight in the US last week of the entirely private-funded SpaceShipOne taking 61 year-old pilot Mike Melvill into space made history in a number of ways. The event has been hailed as a … Read more

Saras Flies: But Where To?

THE first Indian-made civilian passenger aircraft Saras, named after the Indian crane, took to the air in its maiden flight last week. Media stories and various commentators have promptly hailed this as a historic achievement, … Read more

Rovers On Mars: Anyone Out There?

AN important milestone in space exploration was reached on January 4 when the American space agency NASA’s mobile robotic probe, named Spirit, successfully landed on Mars and started sending back spectacular images of the red … Read more

An Artificial Sun On Earth?

LAST week major world and nuclear powers meeting in Washington took further steps, but encountered a major hurdle, along the road towards a dream project for a nuclear reactor or power-generation system based on fusion … Read more

Waiting For Gorshkov

THE suspense over India’s proposed and long-awaited acquisition of the Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov appeared to be over last week only to reappear almost immediately. The developments revealed yet again not only the contentious … Read more

The East Is Redder

WHEN China had launched its first satellite, the Dongfanghong (East is Red) or DFH-1, at a time when it was relatively isolated internationally, its ties with the Soviet Union ruptured and involved in an aggressive … Read more

Nanotechnology: The Genie Is Out Of The Bottle

EVERY few years, a new hype fuels another stock market explosion. If it was microelectronics, the Internet and biotechnology earlier, it is now the turn of nanotechnology. And along with the hype, as it inevitably … Read more

Human Cloning A Distinct Possibility

RECENTLY, the team that had cloned Dolly (the first large animal to be cloned) announced that they are working on human cloning. A few months back, the whole world and especially the scientific establishment was … Read more

Fifty Years Of The Double Helix

THE picture of the double helix, the structure of the DNA, has today become the icon of science, replacing the earlier one of the atom, tainted now by its association with nuclear weapons. And this … Read more