Skip to Content

Play That Fungi Music

We round up this week’s most intriguing items from around the Web.

Play That Fungi Music
To the delight of headline writers everywhere, there is a CD fungus among us, reports the UK’s Electronic Telegraph. A member of the geotrichum genus, the Central American fungus feasts on the aluminum in compact discs, leaving transparent splotches in its wake.

Bottoms Up

Is that Chateau Lafite Rothschild ‘62 in your wine cellar, or a mix of Hawaiian Punch and antifreeze? It’s hard to spot counterfeit wine without popping the cork, reports BBC News, which is why one Australian vineyard is labeling its bottles with DNA fingerprints.

Tricky Mouse
Researchers have genetically engineered a chameleon mouse that changes from white to brown depending on its diet. Apart from the obvious benefits (no more unfashionable white mice after labor day), BBC News says the research helps scientists understand how genes switch on and off-a field that could lead to big payoffs for human health.

Grow in the Dark
Light? Water? Who needs ‘em? asks Scientific American. Researchers are genetically tweaking plants to grow without either-an impressive feat, although it might be hard to explain to your neighbors why you’re harvesting corn in your basement.

DNAngst
Afraid of bungee jumping? Blame your genes, says Reuters. Ditto for your anxieties, attitudes and amusements. Does this mean gene therapy will replace psychotherapy? We’re afraid to ask.

Last week: Open Wide

Keep Reading

Most Popular

Large language models can do jaw-dropping things. But nobody knows exactly why.

And that's a problem. Figuring it out is one of the biggest scientific puzzles of our time and a crucial step towards controlling more powerful future models.

The problem with plug-in hybrids? Their drivers.

Plug-in hybrids are often sold as a transition to EVs, but new data from Europe shows we’re still underestimating the emissions they produce.

Google DeepMind’s new generative model makes Super Mario–like games from scratch

Genie learns how to control games by watching hours and hours of video. It could help train next-gen robots too.

How scientists traced a mysterious covid case back to six toilets

When wastewater surveillance turns into a hunt for a single infected individual, the ethics get tricky.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.