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Stories by John Horgan

Technology Historian Crushes Internet Myths

As readers of this blog know, since 2005 I’ve been teaching at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey. One of the best parts of being an academic is hanging out with cool (compared to me), young (compared to me), up-and-coming scholars, some of whom know far more about the history of science and [...]..

July 1, 2014 — John Horgan
More Cool Sh*t I’ve Read—and Seen—Lately

More Cool Sh*t I’ve Read—and Seen—Lately

This is the fourth installment of my monthly feature "Cool Sh*t I've Read Lately,” in which I draw attention to, um, cool stuff. (Here are columns one, two and three.) Breakthrough Journal...

June 26, 2014 — John Horgan
My Ayahuasca Trip

My Ayahuasca Trip

Ayahuasca—a foul-tasting hallucinogenic tea that can induce violent nausea and terrifying visions—is becoming trendy. A recent article in the “Fashion & Style” section of The New York Times notes that many people—including celebrities such as Lindsay Lohan and Sting—have turned to ayahuasca as a “catalyst for inner growth.” Ayahuasca is fascinating, for many reasons...

June 15, 2014 — John Horgan
So Far, Big Data Is Small Potatoes

So Far, Big Data Is Small Potatoes

Is Big Data going to revolutionize science and help us make a better world? Not based on what it’s done so far. Let me back up a moment.

June 9, 2014 — John Horgan

Talking Death with the Late Psychedelic Chemist Sasha Shulgin

Alexander Shulgin, the most prolific psychedelic chemist in history, has died at the age of 88. I interviewed Shulgin and his wife and co-researcher Ann at their home in California in 1999, when I was researching my 2003 book Rational Mysticism...

June 4, 2014 — John Horgan
Cool Sh*t I’ve Read—and Seen—Lately

Cool Sh*t I’ve Read—and Seen–Lately

This is the third installment in my monthly feature “Cool Sh*t I’ve Read Lately.” (Here are number one and number two.) This month I’m calling it “Cool Sh*t I’ve Read–and Seen—Lately” so I can add a movie and art exhibit...

May 26, 2014 — John Horgan

Sorry, But So Far War on Cancer Has Been a Bust

I recently got into an argument, again, about cancer. The occasion was a talk by one of my colleagues at Stevens Institute, philosopher Gregory Morgan, on the fascinating history of research into cancer-causing viruses...

May 21, 2014 — John Horgan
Cool Sh*t I’ve Read Lately, II

Cool Sh*t I’ve Read Lately, II

Last month, in an effort to make this blog more upbeat, I started a monthly column called “Cool Sh*t I’ve Read Lately.” My stated intention was to draw attention to “well-written articles about compelling topics.” In this second installment, I’m breaking that rule by mentioning not only articles but also books, including a novel...

April 30, 2014 — John Horgan

Crows Aren’t Just Smart, They’re Also Jokers

Corvid cleverness is making news lately. Two of my favorite science writers, Sharon Begley and James Gorman, describe a variety of experiments--reported in PLOS One by researchers in New Zealand–in which crows mimic the hero of Aesop’s ancient fable “The Crow and the Pitcher.” By dropping objects into containers of water, crows raise the water’s [...]..

April 16, 2014 — John Horgan
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