Skip to main content

Features

The Tragedy of Needless Pain

Contrary to popular belief, the author says, morphine taken solely to control pain is not addictive. Yet patients worldwide continue to be undertreated and to suffer unnecessary agony

By Ronald Melzack

The Variable Sun

Its steady warmth and brightness are illusory; the sun's output of radiation and particles varies. Systematic observations are beginning to unveil the causes of these changes and their effects on the earth

By Peter V. Foukal

How Plants Make Oxygen

A biochemical mechanism called the water-oxidizing clock enables plants and some bacteria to exploit solar energy to split water molecules into oxygen gas, protons and electrons

By Govindjee and William J. Coleman

Progress in Gallium Arsenide Semiconductors

The compound is not a candidate to supplant silicon. Nevertheless, its speed and optical capabilities have spawned fast-growing applications in computing and communications

By Marc H. Brodsky

Food Sharing in Vampire Bats

Two nights without a blood meal and a vampire bat starves to death—unless it can solicit food from a roostmate. A buddy system ensures that food distribution among the bats is equitable

By Gerald S. Wilkinson

The Archaeology of Novgorod

Once the center of one of Europe's largest states, medieval Novgorod is nearly perfectly preserved. Among the finds are 700 birch-bark manuscripts that give an intimate view of the city's life

By Valentin L. Yanin

Positive Feedbacks in the Economy

A new economic theory elucidates mechanisms whereby small chance events early in the history of an industry or technology can tilt the competitive balance

By W. Brian Arthur

Departments

  • 50 and 100 Years Ago: February 1990

  • R.I.P. Blackbird

  • Aborted Research

  • Chub Hubbub

  • Up Against the Wall

  • Roving Stones

  • Cold Storage

  • Kissing Cousins

  • Snakes in the Grass

  • When Dad Drinks

  • Playing the Numbers

  • Indecent Burial

  • The Oncogene Connection

  • Science in Pictures: Chaos and Fractals in Human Physiology

  • Progress by Degrees

  • Antibody Bonanza

  • Banking Futures

  • The Amateur Scientist, February 1990

  • Books, February 1990

  • Essay: Who Will do Science in the Next Century?

  • Letters

    Letters to the Editors, February 1990

  • Departments

    The Analytical Economist: Taking Stock

Purchase To Read More

Already purchased this issue? Sign In to Access
Select Format
February 1990

Feeling Dead Inside?

Tear Into Our eBook