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Vanessa Viegas
Articles by Vanessa Viegas

Sleeper cell: Could Conan the Bacterium survive on Mars?

Deinococcus radiodurans has survived harmful radiation, extreme temperatures and a trip to space. New research suggests it could potentially be a Martian too.

 (Michael J Daly / USU)
Updated on Jul 27, 2023 10:59 PM IST

Chatty, hangry, Lazarus-like: Astonishing new findings on how bacteria work

How do microbes go dormant for centuries, and then revive themselves? Could we potentially ‘talk’ to them? New findings could help science use bacteria better.

Updated on Jul 27, 2023 10:56 PM IST

A bug’s life: Could bacteria help us clean up our mess?

They’re an army of superheroes, in land, sea and air. Some can act as bio-batteries. Others digest plastic. Some emit energy, simply by breathing.

(Images: Wikimedia Commons; Imaging: Puneet Kumar)
Updated on Jul 27, 2023 10:54 PM IST

Air India and the 747: Emperors that carried palaces in the sky

Each of the early planes had a name. Their interiors reflected India’s opulent heritage. They helped put Air India in the league of the world’s best airlines.

The early 747s had iconic first-class decks. This Air India one featured couches, full table service, multi-course meals, and murals inspired by the frescoes at the Ajanta caves. (HT Archives)
Updated on Aug 11, 2023 09:00 PM IST

Flying colours: A tribute to the Boeing 747

The last one rolled out in January. The age of the jumbo jet is officially over. See how this plane altered the map of the world,in the golden age of aviation.

The Boeing 747 wasn’t just bigger than every other commercial airline of its time, it was at least double the size of every other plane in the skies. (Adobe.stock)
Updated on Aug 11, 2023 08:59 PM IST
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For the record: A Wknd interview with historian Anita Anand of Empire

For too long, colonisers depicted themselves as heroes and Indians were in the backdrop of their own story, says the British historian of Indian origin.

 (Photo: Suki Dhanda)
Updated on Aug 18, 2023 01:22 PM IST
ByVanessa Viegas and Tanisha Saxena

What is a genome, anyway? The myths, a timeline and links to the stars

From the simple fruit fly to the Neanderthal and then the human race, see how the genome map evolved, spawning myths and providing missing links along the way.

Updated on Aug 12, 2023 03:58 PM IST

Inner piece: The final secrets of the human genome

The newly mapped sequences can help us learn more about how our ape ancestors fared, what separates us all and connects us all too. See how it all unfolded

Updated on Aug 12, 2023 03:56 PM IST

Grey matter: Are colours fading from our world?

A hotly contested study argued, in 2020, that manmade objects were turning to darker shades. See why the researchers may have been right.

The gradual leaching of colour from American cafes of the 1970s to the 1990s and today. (New Castle County Government, Shutterstock / Starbucks)
Updated on Aug 10, 2023 05:20 PM IST

Potion control: The simplest guide to great skin right now

Out of time, money, and patience? Simplify your skincare routine with expert tips

Skincare can be overwhelming but some products, like water-based broad spectrum sunscreen, deserve the hype. (Shutterstock)
Updated on Jul 24, 2023 07:48 PM IST

HT Brunch Cover Story: Saba has you covered

The musician, actor and girl boss is set to amp up your weekend with book, screen, style and music recommendations

Actor, musician and cover girl Saba Azad says, “Boredom is such a valuable tool. I’m not sure we allow ourselves to be bored anymore”.
Updated on Jul 24, 2023 08:07 PM IST

Every season gets the blues: A denim timeline

It’s been 150 years since the first blue jeans rolled out of a Levi’s factory. Then came the experiments, and errors — bling, balloony waists, skinny bottoms

Kelly Rowland, Beyonce Knowles and Michelle Williams of the band Destiny’s Child in the bling and bubblegum palettes of the Aughts. (Getty Images)
Updated on Aug 12, 2023 04:29 PM IST

What to watch, read, tune in to: Wknd’s pop-culture-driven guide to 2023

This is set to be a year of turning points, major face-offs, changes in how we eat, what we watch, where we play. There’s big news from the worlds of space exploration, Barbie, and King Charles. Where can you learn more? What should you be watching, reading, tuning in to? Take a look.

Updated on Jan 07, 2023 01:24 PM IST
ByNatasha Rego and Vanessa Viegas

All you need is laugh: Meet some of 2022’s top viral video-content creators

At the end of a tough year, one in which we limped back into a new normal, here’s a tip of the hat to the video-content creators who brought us the most joy: a hysterical Parsi trying to learn Marathi, a Gen-Z-er wanting to live-stream her kidnapping, a Mangaluru girl in a battle of the tongues. Meet our Top 5.

Zoha Sanofer, Zervaan Bunshah, Srishti Garg, Satshya Tharien and Sanaea Bubber.
Updated on Dec 24, 2022 09:29 PM IST

Glazing at the future: Inside India’s studio glass movement

Look closely at India’s glassmaking wave and you’ll spot glimpses of post-war America. There’s art, innovation, new tech, and a delicate hope for tomorrow.

Ismail Plumber and Arjun Rathi at their open studio, Rural Modern Glass, in Mumbai.
Updated on Oct 29, 2022 02:41 PM IST

Rewind to the studio glass movement of 1950s USA

A renaissance in glass occurred in post-war America, with masters from Italy, Sweden and Czechoslovakia sharing closely guarded secrets and new tech driving innovation.

Updated on Oct 29, 2022 01:34 PM IST

Are your secrets costing you more than you know?

New research shows that each of us, at any time, is carrying about five secrets that we have told no one. Take a look at the science of why sharing secrets helps, and the price you could be paying for holding them in.

 (HT Illustration: Malay Karmakar)
Updated on Oct 22, 2022 02:13 PM IST

Is this seat taken? A time-lapse look at the chairs of India

From the pharaohs to the Ancient Greeks and Mughal emperors, this piece of furniture has shaped posture and posturing. As a new book explores how chair evolved here, take a look at five iconic and familiar designs.

The Pierre Jeanneret, monobloc plastic, Godrej CH-4, Bombay Fornicator and bentwood chairs.
Updated on Oct 15, 2022 04:50 PM IST

And the winner is...? See how India’s indie films are wowing the world

As Wknd celebrates Indian indie cinema, check out five films that have found wins and fans at film festivals around the world.

A still from Dostojee, winner of the Golden Shika Award at the Nara International Film Festival, Japan.
Updated on Oct 07, 2022 05:37 PM IST

The long shot: How independent Indian filmmakers are making their mark

There’s been a great unspooling. Indian indie films are making waves at international festivals, finding new audiences on streaming platforms and in theatres. But it’s still a struggle to stand out amid the large numbers and the noise of the mainstream. What are the storytellers doing differently in order to compete better? And is it working? Take a look.

Updated on Oct 08, 2022 12:32 PM IST

Now streaming in India: The world’s longest river cruise

The Ganga Vilas will float 4,000 km, from Varanasi across to West Bengal, the Sundarbans, then Dhaka in Bangladesh, sailing into the Brahmaputra and Assam before returning to Varanasi.

The lounge and deck of the 18-cabin Ganga Vilas. ‘Our mission is to regenerate our riparian routes, forgotten since the advent of the railways and thereafter the roadways,’ says Raj Singh, chairman of Antara cruises.
Updated on Sep 17, 2022 04:57 PM IST

Bound by blood: ‘Vampires’ in the real world

The vampiric community, numbering in the thousands, is spread across classes, races, geographies and genders. They take blood (1 tbsp or 2 every couple of weeks), or energy, from willing donors. See what makes a ‘vampire’ a ‘vampire’, and how the subculture evolved.

At one of fangsmith Father Sebastiaan’s Endless Night Vampire Balls. The 47-year-old American (not pictured) has identified as a vampire since age 17. He has taken on the mission of rallying the vampire community of New York City since 1995, also the year he launched his prosthetic fangs enterprise.
Updated on Sep 16, 2022 07:05 PM IST

The Indian ghoul guide: Monsters of our making

There are bloodsuckers galore in Indian lore: The mischievous vetala that hangs upside-down from trees, flesh-eating pishachas, the night sorceress chedipe who only attacks men.

A vetala or Betaal exists in the realm between life and death. In some tales, the vetala is wise and offers sage advice, in others, he is a dreaded being who takes delight in sucking human blood and driving people insane by filling their heads with his voice that never stops talking.
Updated on Sep 16, 2022 06:49 PM IST

The newest hits: K-pop without the K

A number of hot new Korean bands have no members from South Korea. South Asian artists dominate, as the focus shifts from showcasing home culture to wooing the world.

Priyanka Mazumdar (second from right) joined Z-Girls in 2019. Each member of the band is from a different country; none is from South Korea.
Updated on Aug 27, 2022 03:36 PM IST

What purpose do dreams serve? The science is stranger than the fantasy fiction

One man’s nightmares gave us The Sandman, a world in which the creator of all dreams struggles to control them. That’s the popular comic, now also a Netflix show. But what does the latest science say, about the abiding mystery of why we dream?

Fairies Descend to the Chamber of Prince Manohar, a painting from 18th-century India that depicts a prince being transported, in his sleep, to his beloved princess Madhumalati, for whom he pines. (The Metropolitan Museum of Art)
Updated on Aug 27, 2022 03:12 PM IST

Forgiveness vs revenge: Should you just... let it go?

Science is now confirming what the prophets have always preached: that it is better to forgive than seek revenge. But what about forgiveness done wrong? Take a look

 (HT Illustration: Jayachandran)
Updated on Aug 26, 2022 07:48 PM IST

Shots fired: A Wknd interview with Ma Anand Sheela

She’s been a key aide to spiritual guru Osho, a convict doing time for attempted murder, a viral sensation, now a philanthropic caregiver. How should others see her? Any way they want; it’s not my problem, it’s theirs, says Sheela, 72, who was in Mumbai recently to promote her latest book.

Ma Anand Sheela at the Royal Opera House in Mumbai. Her new book is titled By My Own Rules. (Satish Bate / HT Photo)
Updated on Aug 05, 2022 06:38 PM IST

Skating in a sari: Meet South Asians shattering stereotypes abroad

Reels of a Bharatanatyam-hip hop hybrid, a couple skiing in a sari and veshti, a woman skating in nine yards, are going viral, offering new takes on traditions and adding a dash of colour to other cultures too.

Paris-based Usha Jey (centre) combined hip hop and Bharatanatyam to create her own style, Hybrid Bharatham. Her choreography to Lil Wayne’s Uproar went viral in May, getting over 4 million views on Instagram. (
Updated on Jul 30, 2022 03:18 PM IST

Mumbai will host Lollapalooza next January

In Chicago, where the festival is held from July 28-31, Metallica, Dua Lipa, J. Cole, and Green Day are performing

The line-up in Paris, where it took place on July 16 and 17, included Pearl Jam, Imagine Dragons, A$AP Rocky, and David Guetta, while in Sweden on July 1and 2, the big names included Post Malone, Doja Cat, Kacey Musgraves and Polo G among others. (Lollapalooza)
Published on Jul 28, 2022 12:24 AM IST

She sleuths to conquer: A new murder mystery is set in Bangalore of the 1920s

Harini Nagendra’s debut novel is focused on a 19-year-old homemaker-turned-amateur detective. But it also offers glimpses of a very different Bengaluru, a pre-Independence India, and the sisterhood of women in a rapidly changing country.

‘The book is not just about a single woman; it’s also about the sisterhood of women, the communities they form and the ways in which they support each other. That has always fascinated me,’ Nagendra says.
Updated on Jul 09, 2022 12:49 PM IST
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