SHINING CITYSCAPE | We love concept artist Josh Kao's gorgeous future cities. See more of them here.

Do you feel more lonely after using your smart phone?

In a recently-posted TED talk, MIT professor and psychologist Sherry Turkle explains why people who are constantly tethered to their smart phones feel so alone. She argues that loneliness in the age of social media has become far more crippling than ever before in history. But is she right that connectivity is driving us apart? More »

Writing advice from C.S. Lewis was both adorable and concise

On June 26, 1956, author C.S. Lewis responded to a fan letter from Joan Lancaster, a young Chronicles of Narnia enthusiast. In a personalized thank-you letter, the writer imparted some simple and valuable stylistic advice for budding prose writers. More »

A UFO emerges from the smog over Beijing

UFOlogists are buzzing about this recent camera phone shot from Beijing, which shows an old-school flying saucer appearing to emerge from the smoggy skies over the ultra-modern metropolis. More »

We've seen the first 30 minutes of Pixar's Brave!

Pixar is still putting the finishing touches on its Scotland-set, female-centered, arrow-flinging fantasy film Brave, but we got a sneak peek at the movie's first 30 minutes. More »

Why is everybody obsessed with Snow White right now?

Everybody wants a piece of Snow White this year. We've got two movies that retell the iconic fairy tale this season - Mirror, Mirror (released last week) and Snow White and the Huntsman (coming in June). More »

10 Questions That Never Got a Straight Answer on Television

One of the wonderful things about our television obsessions is, they keep us guessing. But sometimes, when someone asks a straight question and doesn't get a straight answer, it can get a bit annoying. More »

Google Maps Quest View turns your commute into an RPG

I don't know if Google Maps is gifting us with an early April Fool's Day prank, but I hope Quest View sticks around. Click on the right-hand corner of your Google map to see your local landscape transformed into a pixelated video game map, complete with mountains and trees in the appropriate places. More »

The trouble with race in Game of Thrones can be traced to Tolkien

Over at Salon, fantasy writer Saladin Ahmed has a terrific essay about race in fantasy epics, focusing especially on Game of Thrones and its relationship to JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings cycle. More »

The war that comes after global warming will blow your mind in new novel Arctic Rising

A lot of science fiction about the Earth's warmer future is dystopian, showing us drowned cities and people reduced to Road Warrior desperados. But Tobias Buckell's new novel, Arctic Rising, offers a far more complicated and realistic picture of what the world will look like when the poles melt. More »

There's so much awesome in this photograph I can hardly stand it

Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano - known to many as "the Black Giant" - is one of the most active volcanos on Earth; and under the right circumstances, it's also one of the most beautiful. More »

The Worst Science Fiction Movie Ever Made, According to You

After weeks of hot debating, io9's readers have now officially picked the very worst science fiction movie of all time, in our March Madness bracket. More »

Dark Energy Confirmed: How ancient sound waves shaped the entire universe

Just 30,000 years after the Big Bang, the universe started singing. Vast soundwaves rang out and expanded through the primordial cosmos, their ripples determining the universe's large-scale structure. More »

How to Tell When the Superhero Movie Craze is Finally Over

It's been over a decade since superhero movies started ruling the world. And everybody keeps expecting it to end any day. More »

Hard evidence that giant tyrannosaurs were cuter than you ever thought possible

Imagine a tyrannosaur weighing one and a half tons, completely covered in soft, downy plumage. Even its tail is fluffy with feathers. More »

From "Irritable Heart" to "Shellshock": How Post-Traumatic Stress Became a Disease

When people have suffered a violent or horrifying experience, the trauma can follow them around for years - and we call that Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). More »

Scientists still aren't sure why the "uncanny valley" freaks you the hell out

When Pixar screened a computer-animated short film called "Tin Toy" in 1988, test audiences hated the sight of the pseudo-realistic baby named "Billy" who terrorized the toys. More »

These real-life Disney princess photos are so spot-on, it's eerie

Holy giant Jasmine ponytail, we cannot rip our eyes away from this collection of real-life Disney princesses (and Jessica Rabbit, who isn't from true royal cartoon blood, but whatever) by photographer Ryan Astamendi. More »

Awesome child given detention for clever Hunger Games joke

How could The Hunger Games land a kid in detention? Did they bring a bow and arrow to school? Did they drop a beehive on a classmate's head? More »