Welcome to the second edition of “Do You Even Science,” the weekly quiz that tests whether you’ve been paying attention to the breakthroughs that are happening every day.
This week, we learned that prairie dogs are terrifying. Traffic lights, it seems, could someday go the way of pay phones. Noted geneticist Craig Venter announced that his team had stripped a microbe’s genome to the barest essentials necessary to sustain life. Far from answering questions, Venter’s humbling discovery raised a crop of new questions and proved that there’s still a lot that we don’t know about the genome.
Scientists also proved you can read a book – a scroll in this case – without ever opening it. While probing Herculaneum scrolls buried during the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius with X-rays, scientists learned something new about writing technology.
Does all of this sound familiar? If you science, and science hard, it should. However, talk is cheap. Answer these questions with 100 percent accuracy, and you can coast into the weekend fully confident that you have a trove of anecdotes that’ll impress your friends at the cocktail party.