A well-designed flag can be a thing of beauty, inspiring pledges of allegiance galore. But weirdly, bad flags can inspire passion and loyalty too, suggesting that democracy and design don’t always go together.

How can humans survive if the world gets drier? Here’s one scientist’s answer … so-called “resurrection” crops.

Rachel Sussman is obsessed with very old things that are still alive. She has spent years researching and tracking down the world’s oldest organisms. Here, take a look at just some of her photographs, and watch her 2010 TED Talk on the topic.

Over the years, social change in the public sphere has led to abrupt shifts in private attitudes about sex. Call it a different kind of sex change.