Previews: The Economist Magazine – April 30, 2022

So far, the invasion of Ukraine has been a disaster for Russia’s armed forces. About 15,000 troops have been killed in two months of fighting, according to Britain’s government. At least 1,600 armoured vehicles have been destroyed, along with dozens of aircraft and the flagship of the Black Sea fleet. 

Cover Preview: Nature Magazine – April 28, 2022

The cover shows an artist’s impression of the pterosaur Tupandactylus imperator. Although feathered pterosaurs have been reported, these claims have been controversial and it has not been clear whether these leathery-winged flying reptiles had feathers of different colours like modern-day birds.

Volume 604 Issue 7907

In this week’s issue, Aude Cincotta and her colleagues present evidence that not only did pterosaurs have feathers but that the feathers probably had varied coloration. The researchers analysed a partial skull of Tupandactylus, found in Brazil and dated to around 113 million years ago. They identified two types of feather along the base of the crest, one of which featured branched structures very similar to modern feathers. They also found pigment-producing organelles in both types of feather and the skin on the head crest. The team suggests that these coloured feathers would have been used in visual communication and that their presence in Tupandactylus indicates the ability to manipulate feather colour stretches back farther than was previously realized. 

Italian Views: Tuscan Villa Bramasole Tour With Author Frances Mayes

A tour of the countryside villa Bramasole in Cortona, Italy, with author Frances Mayes. Chef Silvia gives a cooking lesson using local ingredients, and a jeweller talks about Tuscany’s goldsmithing tradition.

Architecture: 2022 Design Educates Award Winners

Winners of the 2022 Design Educates Awards. Each year, the Design Educates Awards highlight international design projects that tackle context-specific concerns and educate users about sustainability.

Walks: Fuengirola, Costa Del Sol In Southern Spain

Fuengirola is a town on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain, known for its sandy beaches. South of the city center, the medieval Moorish Sohail Castle towers over the coastline, and hosts concerts, festivals and a medieval market in summer. Adjacent to the Plaza de Toros bullring is Bioparc Fuengirola, a naturalistic zoo featuring a re-created jungle clearing and animals from Asia and Africa.

Morning News: Bulgaria & Poland Gas Cut, Singapore Politics, Venice Biennale

By shutting off gas to Poland and Bulgaria, Russia has made an aggressive move that may draw yet more European sanctions. How might the escalation end? 

The popularity of Singapore’s ruling party has slipped, a bit, so it has selected a kinder, gentler leader ahead of elections in 2025. And why the delayed Art Biennale in Venice was worth the wait