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Features

The Importation of Liquefied Natural Gas

The shortages of the past winter have dramatized the increasing uncertainty of U.S. gas supplies. The importation of liquefied natural gas by ship may ameliorate the situation, but is it safe?

By Elisabeth Drake and Robert C. Reid

The Collision between India and Eurasia

For the past 40 million years the Indian subcontinent has been pushing northward against the Eurasian land mass, giving rise to the severest earthquakes and the most diverse land forms known

By Paul Tapponnier and Peter Molnar

The Status of Interferon

The protein that defends cells from viruses was discovered 20 years ago. It has been difficult to purify it and learn how it acts, but it still promises to be valuable against serious viral diseases

By Derek C. Burke

Algorithms

An algorithm is a set of rules for getting a specific output from a specific input. Each step must be so precisely defined it can be translated into computer language and executed by machine

By Donald E. Knuth

Biocrystals

The development of an elaborate crystalline skeleton within the transparent embryo of the sea urchin provides a model for the shaping of hard mineralized tissues such as shell and bone

By Shinya Inoué and Kayo Okazaki

The Companions of Sunlike Stars

Many stars have other stars as companions; do any of them have planets? An intensive spectrographic search for companions of 123 comparatively nearby stars provides a clue to the frequency of such planetary systems

By Helmut A. Abt

The Spread of the Bantu Language

Bantu is spoken by 130 million people in southern Africa. Linguistic and archaeological evidence suggests that the original Bantu-speakers began their migration from a region in the north some 2,300 years ago

By D. W. Phillipson

The Theory of the Rainbow

When sunlight is scattered by raindrops, why is it that colorful arcs appear in certain regions of the sky? Answering this subtle question has required all the resources of mathematical physics

By H. Moysés Nussenzveig

Departments

  • 50 and 100 Years Ago, April 1977

  • Science and the Citizen, April 1977

  • Letters

    Letters to the Editors, April 1977

  • Recommended

    Books, April 1977

  • Mathematical Recreation

    Mathematical Games, April 1977

  • Departments

    The Authors, April 1977

  • Bibliography, April 1977

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April 1977