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A mini-series that explores how technology is helping probe some of the deepest, most mind-bending questions of our existence.

a series of open doors leading to a bright light with the wallpaper showing a twilight view over the ocean

What is death?

New neuroscience is challenging our understanding of the dying process—bringing opportunities for the living.

chess pieces fly away across a cosmic chessboard toward a bright star

Why is the universe so complex and so beautiful?

For some reason the universe is full of stars, galaxies, and life. But it didn’t have to be this way.

a head with a window where an ear would typically be, floats in a small room with windows on the walls, floor and cieling to abstract celestial spaces

Is it possible to really understand someone else’s mind?

How we think, feel and experience the world is a mystery to everyone but us. But technology may be starting to help us understand the minds of others.

a flower with petals formed from some of the same cosmic background surrounding it

How did life begin?

AI is helping chemists unpick the mysteries around the origins of life and detect signs of it on other worlds.

Are we alone in the universe?

Scientists are training machine-learning models and designing instruments to hunt for life on other worlds.


Reporting: Adam Becker, Grace Huckins, Adam Mann, Michael Marshall, Rachel Nuwer
Editing: Rachel Courtland, Niall Firth
Copy editing: Linda Lowenthal
Art direction: Stephanie Arnett
Illustration: Ariel Davis