Some Links Worth Reading

1. C. Kirabo Jackson finds that college-prep programs -- with payments -- really do work for inner-city students.

2. The Stanford Technology Law Review digs deep into Intellectual Ventures' role as "mass aggregator" of patents; Business Insider's writeup: "It's an ugly business. But it's also perfectly legal."

3. A 3D printer that makes bowls and ceramics out of sand.

4. British medical students turn to prostitution.

Finally: A Garden Hose to the Sky

Well, it’s actually happening. An idea reported on extensively in SuperFreakonomics has come to fruition, and some mad scientists are getting their way (and a little government funding) to build a garden hose to the sky - and save the world by cooling it down.

A team of British researchers called SPICE (Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering), is attempting to pump particles of water into the atmosphere as a test run before moving onto sulfates and aerosols that would reflect sunlight away from earth, mimicking a volcano effect. SPICE is building the garden hose at an undisclosed location, with £1.6 million in UK government funding and the backing of the Royal Society.

Would a New Class of Nuclear Reactors Have Withstood the Tsunami?

As dangerous levels of radiation thwart emergency work at Japan's damaged Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, Japanese military fire trucks have reportedly resorted to spraying spent fuel rods with water in an effort to cool them.

Food and the New Physics

Molecular gastronomists are altering and reimagining our food: from flavored foams to dry ice for dessert. But you have to wonder, have the practical applications of science in the kitchen taken a back seat to all this whimsy?