A Grocery List in 1968 Changed Computer History Forever

A version of this article originally appeared on The Conversation. On a crisp California afternoon in early December 1968, a square-jawed, mild-mannered Stanford researcher named Douglas Engelbart took the stage at San Francisco’s Civic Auditorium and proceeded to blow everyone’s mind about what computers could do. Sitting down at a keyboard, this computer-age Clark Kent calmly showed a rapt audience of computer engineers how the devices they built could be utterly different kinds of mach

Black Hole Sucks Down Star Stuff at 30 Percent Speed of Light

After falling past the event horizon — the point of no return — nothing can escape a black hole. While the depths of black holes may forever remain a mystery, astronomers can observe the regions around them. In a paper published September 3 in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, a team of researchers reported, for the first time, spotting a clump of matter falling directly into a distant black hole at nearly one-third the speed of light. The observations, which come fro

How to Be a Happier Parent, With Journalist K.J. Dell’Antonia 

In this episode, KJ Dell’Antonia—journalist and author of How to Be a Happier Parent: Raising a Family, Having a Life, and Loving (Almost) Every Minute—joins Offspring editor Michelle Woo to discuss how to make your family life less stressful and even—dare we say it?—fun. But first, Alice gives staff writer and…


What You Need to Know Before (and After) Installing macOS Mojave

The latest and greatest version of macOS is here. Whether you’ve been bingeing on the beta for months or forgot all about version 10.14 of Apple’s desktop operating system, you can download the final version of macOS Mojave starting right now. Well, maybe.


How to Wipe Your Smart Gadgets Before You Get Rid of Them

You probably know you have to wipe your old computers and smartphones clean before you sell, donate, or recycle them. After all, you don’t want whoever ends up with your secondhand gadget to access your documents, login credentials, or any personal information.


Paraplegics Walk Again Using Electronic Implant

Three paraplegic patients can walk again thanks to an intense rehabilitation program with a device that sent electricity down his spine, researchers report Monday in two separate studies. A snowmobile accident nearly 4 years earlier had paralyzed the then 26-year-old Jered Chinnock from the middle of his back down. He couldn't move or feel anything below his sixth thoracic vertebrae — a spinal segment in the middle of the rib cage — where he had broken his back. Now, he can voluntarily m

Your Potted Plants Don’t Need Gravel

We’ve all heard the advice to put gravel in the bottom of a plant pot, and some of us may even have done it. But gravel doesn’t improve drainage in any meaningful way, and you’re probably better off without it.


How to Make Boxed Brownie Mix Taste Homemade

If there is one hill I will die on, it is that boxed mix brownies are usually the only brownies worth my time—but that doesn’t mean I don’t like to get fancy with them. If you’re looking to pass yours off as a little more gourmand, simply change the oil.


What to Know About Today’s ‘Time’s Up’ Walk Out

The Time’s Up movement against sexual harassment has called for people to wear black and stage walkouts today in light of allegations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.


What to Consider Before Proposing in Public

If you’re someone who is already planning a surprise public proposal, you might be in too deep to know that it’s probably not a great idea. However, if you’re willing to hit pause, maybe go through this checklist before arranging the flash mob dance.


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