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The Social Security System

The viability of the pay-as-you-go system is threatened by economic and demographic trends. The retired population and its benefits are growing faster than the active work force and its tax contributions

By Eli Ginzberg

The Mass Extinctions of the Late Mesozoic

Many species of plants and animals, notably the dinosaurs, suddenly died out about 63 million years ago. A thin stratum of iridium-rich material suggests the cause may have been the fall of an asteroid

By Dale A. Russell

The Stabilization of Atomic Hydrogen

The gas combines explosively in familiar environments to form molecular hydrogen. A new technique that inhibits the reaction makes it possible to study certain properties of a quantum gas

By Isaac F. Silvera and Jook Walraven

The Moons of Saturn

The 17 icy bodies that orbit the planet display a surprising range of geological evolution. Many of them show craters more than four billion years old, but one of them has terrain so new that no craters are seen

By Laurence A. Soderblom and Torrence V. Johnson

Supercomputers

The Cray-1 and the CYBER 205 can perform 100 million arithmetic operations per second. This kind of "number crunching" is needed for the solution of complex problems such as those in fluid dynamics

By Ronald D. Levine

The Development of a Simple Nervous System

Tracing the pedigree of nerve cells in the embryonic growth of dwarf and giant leeches yields preliminary clues to the functioning of the adult nervous system

By David A. Weisblat and Gunther S. Stent

An Ancient Greek City in Central Asia

A legacy of Alexander's conquest of Persia was a Greek kingdom in what is now Afghanistan. A French archaeological group has spent the past 15 years unearthing one of its cities, Ai Khanum

By Paul Bernard

The Psychology of Preferences

When people make risky choices, they often do not do so objectively. Experimental surveys indicate that such departures from objectivity tend to follow regular patterns that can be described mathematically

By Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahneman

Departments

  • 50 and 100 Years Ago: January 1982

  • Science and the Citizen, January 1982

  • Letters

    Letters to the Editors, January 1982

  • Recommended

    Books, January 1982

  • Amateur Scientist

    The Amateur Scientist, January 1982

  • Departments

    The Authors, January 1982

  • Metamagical Themas, January 1982

  • Bibliography, January 1982

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January 1982

Think Outside the Gift Box