Author Archives: John Horgan

Is Science Hitting a Wall?, Part 1

Economists show increased research efforts are yielding decreasing returns

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Dear Trump, Make World Peace Your Mission

The president has the deal-making skills to end war between nations once and for all

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Can Meditation Make Us Nicer?

A new study raises questions about meditation’s moral and social benefits. 

 

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Cosmic Thinker Worries about the Ends of Science and Humanity

Cosmologist Martin Rees holds forth on multiverses, biothreats, AI, utopia, God and “posthuman” science

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My Alarming, Inspiring Encounter with the Late Stephen Hawking

After having a seizure in my arms at a meeting in Sweden, the paralyzed physicist lectured on how we live in a “superspace” with infinite dimensions

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The More We Know, the More Mystery There Is

Physicist Marcelo Gleiser muses over the paradoxes of scientific progress

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How Technology Can Make Valentine’s Day Much, Much Better

Brain implants could eliminate miscommunication between lovers

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Who Invented the Mind–Body Problem?

Germans were debating the “body–soul problem” by the mid-19th century, but Socrates pondered the problem first

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Is Science Infinite?

Science will never tell us who we really are, and that is why it will last forever

 

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The Infinite Optimism of Physicist David Deutsch

The quantum theorist thinks we’ll solve war, global warming and consciousness—and that will be just the beginning

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The Weirdness of Weirdness

Is weirdness only in the eye of the beholder or is it an objective quality of reality?

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Do Women Want to Be Oppressed?

Evolutionary theorists propose that female desire for domineering males helped create a patriarchal world

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We Have Souls, and So Do Crows

A meditation for the Winter Solstice

 

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Jellyfish, Sexbots and the Solipsism Problem

As long as we lack a "consciousness meter," we can’t resolve debates about what is or isn’t conscious

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Do Fish Suffer?

Speakers at a meeting on animal consciousness dive into a deep ethical debate

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Thanksgiving and the Myth of Native American "Savages"

Prominent scientists exaggerate the violence of Native Americans, whom European invaders ravaged.

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Do We Need Brain Implants to Keep Up with Robots?

Neuroscientist Christof Koch calls for a “crash program” in brain technologies to make us smarter

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Does Buddhism Give Us Answers or Questions?

An encounter with a Buddhist teacher provokes a meditation on the nature of spirituality

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Bizarre Brain-Implant Experiment Sought to "Cure" Homosexuality

In 1970 a psychiatrist at Tulane University electrically stimulated the brain of a gay man while he had sex with a female prostitute

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Lax U.S. Gun Controls Pose a Greater Threat Than Terrorism

U.S.-made guns wreak havoc around the world as well as in the U.S.

 

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Tribute to Jose Delgado, Legendary and Slightly Scary Pioneer of Mind Control

Neuroscientist based at Yale in 1960s controlled bulls, monkeys and humans with brain implants and envisioned a “psychocivilized society”

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The Great Hunger and the Randomness of the World

A science journalist walking through Lower Manhattan ponders the meaning of the Irish Hunger Memorial

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Has the Era of Gene Therapy Finally Arrived?

The FDA just approved the first gene therapy for sale, but such therapies remain far from fulfilling their early promise

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Nuclear Expert Considers Risks of Conflict with North Korea

Nuclear historian Alex Wellerstein also speaks out on nuclear terrorism, proliferation, modernization, eradication and civil defense

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Richard Dawkins Offers Advice for Donald Trump, and Other Wisdom

The biologist and atheist, whose latest book was released this week, talks about the reliability of science, artificial intelligence, religion and the president

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Profile of Claude Shannon, Inventor of Information Theory

Shannon, a pioneer of artificial intelligence, thought machines can think but doubted they "would take over”

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Chimp Guy Knocks Baboon Guy’s Upbeat View of Human War

Harvard’s Richard Wrangham and Stanford’s Robert Sapolsky clash over claim that war has deep evolutionary roots

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The Promise of LSD Microdoses and Other Psychedelic "Medicines"

Psychiatrist John Halpern discusses the psychotherapeutic potential of peyote, ayahuasca, psilocybin, MDMA and other psychedelics

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Tripping on Peyote in Navajo Nation

A journalist exploring psychedelics’ therapeutic potential participates in a ceremony of the Native American Church

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Why We Overrate the Lifesaving Power of Cancer Tests

Science journalist Gary Taubes weighs in on PSA tests and mammograms

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