Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 11:53 am
When we imagine Olympic athletes at the table before the most important competition of their lives, we might picture a huge plate of pasta, with Gatorade to wash it down and a well-deserved ice cream sundae for dessert.
Turns out, they might be preparing with a salad, a glass of beet juice and some almonds.
Termites can build huge, elaborate mounds that rise up from the ground like insect skyscrapers; scientists have now created little robots that act like termites to build a made-to-order structure.
"Termites are the real masters of construction in the insect world," says Justin Werfel of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University. "The largest termite mound on record was 42 feet tall."
Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 2:21 pm
We told you Wednesday about a Belgian proposal that would have made the country the first in the world to allow terminally ill children to choose euthanasia. Thursday, lawmakers in the country voted overwhelmingly to allow just that.
This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. Corporations work hard to influence Congress and public opinion. My guest, Eric Lipton, is an investigative reporter for the New York Times who's been writing about how corporations work in opaque ways to shape debates on issues ranging from whether we should raise the minimum wage to whether high-fructose corn syrup is less healthy than sugar.