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Editor's choice

Jan 19, 2014

A special free-to-read digital edition containing 10 of our very best feature articles on the science and applications of light

In depth: Culture, history & society

Between the lines

Books about Shakespearian science and how to rebuild a scientific civilization after an apocalypse, plus a new take on "Powers of Ten", reviewed by Tushna Commissariat and Margaret Harris

Mathematical bridges

Robert P Crease looks at a mathematics conference that could teach physicists a thing or two

Nanoethical concerns

Using nanotechnology to teach ethics has its pros and cons, finds Robert P Crease

Good scientists and honest people

A biography of one of the Manhattan Project's less-heralded physicists, reviewed by Andrew Robinson

Web life: Excursion Set

New Zealand-based theoretical cosmologist Richard Easther discusses big science stories and takes aim at bad science reporting in this personal blog

From the past, a fiery warning

A book about the 1783 eruption of the Icelandic volcano Laki and the lessons it holds for us today, reviewed by Hazel Rymer

Between the lines

A dual biography of Faraday and Maxwell, an insider's tale of the Higgs hunt and a flawed study of the physics of warfare, reviewed by Margaret Harris

Nanoscience debate rages on

Jon Cartwright looks at the debate surrounding "stripy nanoparticles"

Why don't they listen?

Robert P Crease reckons he knows why science has lost its authority among politicians

The problem of missile defence

Rebecca Slayton's book Arguments that Count has implications that stretch far beyond Cold War history, according to reviewer Philip Webber

All alone in the universe?

Jack Lissauer reviews Lee Billings' Five Billion Years of Solitude, a collection of stories about exoplanet science

Web life: Mahalo.ne.Trash

Astronomer John Johnson shares his thoughts on science, culture and family life in this oddly titled personal blog

The drop heard round the world

Shane D Bergin, Stefan Hutzler and Denis Weaire describe how a funnel full of pitch became a media sensation

Patenting science

Do patents hinder fundamental research? Robert P Crease wants your view

Edible lasers and death rays

Jeff Hecht reviews an "old-fashioned cabinet of wonders" from the field of optics and photonics