What Would Happen If the 20 Biggest US Cities Were Wiped Out With Nukes

Wiping out an American city, much less the largest ones, requires either blast yields well beyond the capability of any terrorist organization, or numbers of nuclear weapons that would make the terrorist organization one of the largest nuclear powers on the planet. This is particularly true of major cities such as… » 10/14/14 1:10pm 10/14/14 1:10pm

This Mysterious NYC Castle Was Actually America's First Cancer Hospital

On the southwest corner of Central Park West and 106th Street in New York City, there's an enormous castle. It takes up the whole east end of the block, with its red brick cylindrical turrets topped with gleaming silver cones. The stained glass windows and intricate stonework make the building look like something out… » 9/19/14 5:30pm 9/19/14 5:30pm

How Close Are We to a Real Iron Man Suit?

If we are just talking about an armored suit that augments a human's strength and weaponry, then we're extremely close. But if we're talking about something with all of the primary abilities of Iron Man's character (i.e. flight, clean infinite power, and repulsor beams), that may never become a reality. The current… » 9/19/14 2:03pm 9/19/14 2:03pm

The Evolution of Potty Training Tech

At some point between the terrible twos and terrifying threes, most of us embarked on a pilgrimage to the great ceramic bowl in the sky. It was a long journey, which left in its wake frustrated parents, soiled sheets, and tiny mounds of ill-timed poop. But over time, with practice and patience, we collectively… » 9/17/14 5:15pm 9/17/14 5:15pm

Bloodletting and Bone Brushes: The White-Knuckle Days of Early Dentistry

With all those gleaming, stainless-steel tools readied for painful prodding, few people look forward to visiting the dentist. But modern dentistry is a walk in the park compared with archaic methods of treating oral maladies: Be glad you're not seeking treatment for mysterious "tooth worms" or using dentures filled… » 9/10/14 3:00pm 9/10/14 3:00pm

The Stubborn "Nail Houses" That Refuse to Get Demolished

In 1914, the government of New York City took ownership of a Manhattan apartment building belonging to one David Hess. The city used a legal power called eminent domain, allowing governments to seize private property for public use—in this case they wanted to expand the subway system. Hess fought them and lost, and… » 9/05/14 3:34pm 9/05/14 3:34pm