Table of Contents October 2009

Discover Magazine's mission is to enable readers to lead richer lives by explaining and expanding their universe.  Each month we bring you in depth information and analysis from various topics ranging from technology and space to the living world we live in.
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The most profound bonds between people begin in our bodies with imitation and synchronized movements.
The great bee die-off is not such a mystery after all: Industrial agriculture has stressed our pollinators to the breaking point.
Physicist Lisa Randall describes the turbulent first year after the collider's premature celebration.
The future of computing may depend on embracing the chaos that defines human thinking.
For decades, RNA was seen as a simple slave to DNA. Newer research shows it has an active and critical role in every disease from Alzheimer's to cancer.
Geologist Walter Alvarez describes how rocks tell the story of Earth's history.
Our universe may be one of a multitude—and it may bear the scars of past run-ins with its neighbors.
Tiny drug-carrying balls of sugar are delivering medicine in novel—and very useful—ways.


Developing nations often have a lack of medical facilities but good cell phones. The CellScope turns the latter into the former.
We eat it, we love it, and it may have been a chemical precursor to life on Earth.
Saturn's surprising moons have broadened scientists' ideas about where extraterrestrial life might be found.
Neuroscientists explore the mind's sexual side and discover that desire is not quite what we thought it was.
A spreading rash signals something far more dangerous than a skin condition.
Hint: It's hard as granite, strong as steel, and has been used for sword grips and shoe soles.


The Hubble Space Telescope is helping to improve our understanding of the expansion of space, dark energy, and the fate of the cosmos.
It's taken 25 years, but a new solar-thermal plant in New Mexico has finally broken the old efficiency record.
Some bacteria pierce the imposing blood-brain barrier by breaking links in the chain; sneakier ones do it by fooling the guard cells.
For anyone who thought hot dogs were the healthiest food around, some new research will come as a sad surprise.