Menus Subscribe Search

Follow us

Nature & Technology

Recent posts

Quick Studies


Don’t Text and Drive—Especially If You’re Old

A new study shows that texting while driving becomes even more dangerous with age.

The Weekly Wonk


No More Space Race

A far cry from the fierce Cold War Space Race between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, exploration in the 21st century is likely to be a much more globally collaborative project.

The Things We Eat


Gluttony and Global Warming: We’re Eating Ourselves to a Warmer Planet

Forget your car. Our obsession with beef and dairy has a far more devastating effect on the climate.

Our Machine Overlords


The Second Life of Old iPods

Why is it that old iPods are suddenly cool—and pricey again?

What Makes You So Smart?


What Makes You So Smart, Web Editor?

Noah Davis talks to Owen Thomas about late nights on his old high school literary magazine, early HTML, and his editorial philosophy.

The World Wide Web


The Platform Is the Product

YouTube, Uber, Google, Amazon—they all have at least one thing in common: You, the consumer, are up for sale. They’re just building the means of reaching as many of you as possible.

Digital Culture


Digital Culture: Mikki Kendall and the Weird Fetishization of Black Twitter

The first in a series of interviews about digital subcultures and communities.

Our Best Friends


Don’t Feed the Squirrels

Because opossums, and coyotes, and bears.

Our Machine Overlords


Old Auto Safety Regulations Are Keeping Us From Seeing Well at Night

Automakers have made several advances in lighting systems—systems that would alert people when they’re about to walk in front of a car, and keep other vehicles from flooding your cabin with blinding light, for starters—but are unable to implement them because of 45-year-old “safety” standards.

Quick Studies


Biodiversity Isn’t Everything in Urban Environments

Paradoxically, insects and other animals eat more junk food in low-diversity median strips than in parks.

The Back Page


Digital Darkness: When We Can’t Turn Away From Death Online

Alana Massey explores her own long-running relationship with the grotesque.



The Flow of Crude: America’s Railroads Are Ill-Equipped to Act as Oil Pipelines

An analysis of federal government data adds new details to what’s known about the routes taken by trains carrying crude oil. Local governments are often unaware of the potential dangers they face.

Genes Are Us


To Read Our DNA, We Need to Crack Another Genetic Code

The only problem is that it may not be much of a code at all.

Guy in the Sky


The Incorruptible Bodies of Saints

Their figures were helped along by embalming, but, somehow, everyone forgot that part.



If It’s Yellow, Seriously, Let It Mellow

If you actually care about water and the future of the species, you’ll think twice about flushing.

Go Outside


What Makes a City Unhappy?

According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, Dana McMahan splits time between two of the country’s unhappiest cities. She set out to explore the causes of the happiness deficits.

Hot in Here


Extreme Weather, Caused by Climate Change, Is Here. Can Nike Prepare You?

Following the approach we often see from companies marketing products before big storms, Nike focuses on climate change science in the promotion of its latest line of base-layer apparel. Is it a sign that more Americans are taking climate change seriously? Don’t get your hopes up.



Chesapeake Energy Faces Subpoena on Royalty Payment Practices

The Justice Department’s inquiry comes after an investigation and years of complaints from landowners who say they have been underpaid for leasing land to the energy giant for drilling.



AT&T Stops Using Undeletable Phone Tracking IDs

Verizon remains committed to its program of inserting a tracking number into its customers’ cell phone transmissions.

Quick Studies


Coastal Cognizance of Climate Change

People who live closer to the shore are more likely to believe in climate change and to support regulation of carbon emissions.

Hot in Here


The Ways Climate Change Is Already Killing Us

In ordinary ways, it’s erasing some of the last century’s impressive progress toward eliminating preventable illnesses and deaths.

True Crime


Odometer Fraud Continues to Plague Used Car Sales

The tools and methods have evolved over the decades, but the crime remains the same.

What Makes You So Smart?


What Makes You So Smart, Computer Programmer?

Noah Davis talks to computer whiz Andrew Kirmse about video game development, his time at Google, and his love of code.

Quick Studies


Controlling Genes With Your Mind

It’s not as surprising as you think.

A weekly roundup of the best of Pacific Standard and, delivered straight to your inbox.

Follow us

Don’t Text and Drive—Especially If You’re Old

A new study shows that texting while driving becomes even more dangerous with age.

Apparently You Can Bring Your Religion to Work

New research says offices that encourage talk of religion actually make for happier workplaces.

Canadian Kids Have a Serious Smoking Problem

Bootleg cigarette sales could be leading Canadian teens to more serious drugs, a recent study finds.

The Hidden Psychology of the Home Ref

That old myth of home field bias isn’t a myth at all; it’s a statistical fact.

The Big One

One in two United States senators and two in five House members who left office between 1998 and 2004 became lobbyists. November/December 2014

Copyright © 2014 by Pacific Standard and The Miller-McCune Center for Research, Media, and Public Policy. All Rights Reserved.