How a Kaleidoscope Is Made

A couple of mirrors, a cardboard tube, and a bunch of random crap. That’s what’s behind the mind-twisting magic of a kaleidoscope. And when we say random crap, we literally mean that. There’s no real method for designing the end cap of a kaleidoscope, they just add whatever they want. Some objects are glued down, some are left to float, and the results all look totally crazy because of the triangle mirror system.

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Bionic Implant Improves Vision for Some Eye Patients

It may sound like something out of “Star Trek”: Doctors have implanted a device in patients that has restored some central vision after advanced eye disease left those individuals with only limited peripheral vision. This is the first time that artificial and natural vision has ever been integrated in humans, the U.K.-based research team said.

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Inside the 19th-Century Free Love Commune Powered by Electric Sex, Eugenics and Delusions of Immortality

John Humphrey Noyes so fervently believed sleeping around could lead to immortality that he convinced 300 people to join him in a utopian socialist community built on that very principle, in upstate New York. As he saw it, promiscuous “interlocked contact” between men and women—in the form of a polyamory scheme he called “Complex Marriage”—would generate enough spiritual energy to propel the human race into some sort of electrically powered, divinely connected eternal life. And that’s only the beginning of the 19th-century Oneida Community founder’s randy theology.

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Building AI Is Hard—So Facebook Is Building AI That Builds AI

DEEP NEURAL NETWORKS are remaking the Internet. Able to learn very human tasks by analyzing vast amounts of digital data, these artificially intelligent systems are injecting online services with a power that just wasn’t viable in years past. They’re identifying faces in photos and recognizing commands spoken into smartphones and translating conversations from one language to another. They’re even helping Google choose its search results. All this we know. But what’s less discussed is how the giants of the Internet go about building these rather remarkable engines of AI.

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