By Angel Latt
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! In addition to the rampaging COVID-19 pandemic, we are entering the season of sniffly and stuffy noses, coughs and congestion, and piles of negative rapid tests as we self-diagnose ourselves with the common cold. We blame the rapid drop in temperature or our slightly sick friends we hung out with too closely or even the flu virus. We all have our own little remedies to treat our colds, whether through prescription painkillers or homeopathic teas and salves, we battle off our seasonal colds. However, what is the common cold exactly? Where does it come from? How is it different from the flu? Having gone through this inner turmoil myself recently, I did some digging.
By Charles Bonkowsky
Mantle geologists have it rough.
In its pure form, a sample of the Earth’s red-hot mantle would provide innumerable insights, answering long-standing geologic questions ranging from the precise elemental composition of the planet’s interior to how seismic waves travel. But it’s getting one that’s the tough part. Standing between us and the mantle is several miles of solid rock—that is, the Earth’s crust—and the only way to reach the mantle is straight through.
By Lauren Goralsky
Close your eyes.
The year is 1977, and you are staring at an oversized movie screen in quiet expectation when the words “Star Wars” appear. Fast forward 2 hours to the end of the film, and you find yourself longing for intergalactic space travel, maybe even slightly melancholy that real lightsabers are not for sale at the local Target. While most of us have accepted the fact that we must go through life without handy and deadly lasers by our side, scientists, like the Jedi, have not given up hope. Scientists are currently using the latest laser technology to fight the ultimate earthly enemy: cancer.
By Aidan Eichman
Sarah Connor pulls back the Terminator’s scalp to unveil the cylindrical metal contraption inside the latter’s head. She and her son, John, look for ways to disconnect the robot from its owner’s control. After diving deep into the Terminator’s skull, Sarah removes its central processing unit, immediately placing the Terminator in a fixed state in which it is unable to talk or move. In essence, the robot has been turned off via a metaphorical on-off switch. The audience then must inquire whether or not this intelligent system in the form of a human body is, as a human, sleeping, or whether it is, as a robot, void of any capacity to sleep. The Terminator looks identical to a sleeping human, causing viewers to question the binary separation of robotic functionality and human existence.
By Sydney Wells
When was the last time you composted? If you live in a rural or suburban area, your answer might be “just this morning.” Maybe you have a robust compost pile in your backyard, drive your waste to a compost center, or can toss your banana peels out the window. For those living in metropolitan areas, however, it probably isn’t this simple. In urban areas, people often lack yards, live on high-up apartment floors, and don’t own cars. However, composting in an urban setting is possible, and is easier than most people might think.