Game of skills or evil gambling? It is hard to believe that there was a long period in the history of arcade games when pinball machines, these amazing mixtures of art, design, engineering, technology, gaming, sport, culture, and so on, were banned. It was illegal to own even just one. »
Your schoolteachers probably told you most species wouldn’t (or maybe couldn’t) successfully interbreed with one another. If some did, their hybrid offspring, like mules, couldn’t have babies of their own. That explanation was a bit oversimplified. Hybridization happens, and it may be one way new species arise. »
There’s a new branch on the human family tree. Anthropologists say they’ve found a new human ancestor, who lived 3.5 million years ago, right beside Australopithecus afarensis on the plains of what is now Ethiopia. »
Sexual selection doesn’t necessarily just shape sexual anatomy – it can have as profound an effect on the rest of an animal’s body as natural selection does. In both cases, the end result is more babies for animals that look or act a particular way. »
We all have our own different coping mechanisms when it comes to stress. A nice walk outside. A cold beer. A punching bag. Blowing up at your friends. And glowing in the dark. What? Scientists believe that these millipedes evolved to glow in the dark to deal with stress (and to let predators now that they’re packing… »
Roughly 3.3 billion years ago, Earth’s early life forms were plunged into an unimaginable hell, when a series of massive asteroids smashed into the young planet, vaporizing the oceans and scorching the skies. »
The Y chromosome, a chunk of genetic code that is unique to male mammals, isn’t just physically smaller than the X. It also contains far fewer genes. The X has more than 1000 genes, while the Y has fewer than 200 —and most of them don’t even work. Why do men have this odd, stunted chromosome in their genomes? »
Some species of moth can produce ultrasonic emissions that confuse echolocating bats, and they do it by rubbing their sex organs together.
Most of the time, the male Superb Bird of Paradise is a fairly nondescript black bird. But when it tries to attract a mate, it flips its feathers around to create a fluorescent kabuki mask that you’ll never forget. In this video, ornithologist Ed Scholes explains how the bird creates the illusion.
When it comes to birds, males—with their bright feathers, extra accessories, and impressive mating displays—tend to get all the attention. But for many birds, such as the Choco Toucan pictured above, brilliant plumage has nothing to do with sex, and everything to do with survival. »
What's happening in Siberia's thawing permafrost and Greenland's melting glaciers sounds borderline supernatural. Ancient viruses, bacteria, plants, and even animals have been cryogenically frozen there for millennia—and now, they are waking up. »
What do a butterfly's shimmering wings, a fish's opalescent scales, and a peacock's brilliant feathers have in common? Yes, their colors are beautifully iridescent. But they are also produced by the physical interaction of light with sophisticated nanoscale architecture that we are only just beginning to understand. »
Obviously, alcohol's been a part of human society for a very long time. We started making it at roughly the same time we figured out agriculture, 9,000 years ago. A new study on our now-extinct ancestors revealed that they developed the ability to metabolize alcohol when they started going down to forest floors, about… »
Five hundred million years ago our eyes were only little cavities with the ability to detect the direction of the incoming light. That cavity evolved radically transforming into the complex organs we all know today. But how did this happen? This TedEd video has the scientific answer: »
Receiving luxury Christmas presents is great. Giving them, however, has one major downside: Luxury Christmas gifts are expensive as shit. Perhaps that's why the business of peddling counterfeit items like fake iPhone 6 smartphones and knockoff Louis Vuittons is flourishing on darknet markets like Evolution. »
Our beloved burgers needed eight centuries to evolve from the raw meat Mongolian soldiers kept under their saddles, to the grilled juicy beauties we enjoy inside a bun nowadays. This excerpt of The History of the Hamburger, a documentary by National Geographic, explains that evolution. »