3Qs: Why Samsung Galaxy Note 7s are igniting and how to deal with the recall

Fed­eral reg­u­la­tors yes­terday announced a formal recall of some 1 mil­lion Sam­sung Galaxy Note 7 smart­phones after reports of the devices over­heating and igniting. North­eastern research pro­fessor K.M. Abraham, an expert on lithium-​​ion bat­tery tech­nology, explains the phe­nom­enon and how to respond to it.

3Qs: How safe are US airports?

The Trans­porta­tion Secu­rity Admin­is­tra­tion is finding more firearms than ever at air­port check­points. Is this a sign that the TSA is doing its job or an indi­ca­tion that more trav­elers are trying to board planes with these weapons in their bags? And what about “insider threats” among air­port per­sonnel? We asked an expert.

3Qs: What the Lochte saga can teach us about branding

After get­ting dropped by all his major spon­sors, Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte signed a new endorse­ment deal with a little-​​known cough drop com­pany. It’s a poten­tially low-​​risk, high-​​reward move for both the ath­lete and the brand, says pro­fessor Bruce Clark.

3Qs: Discovery of Earth-​​like planet suggests ‘we might not be alone’

A newly dis­cov­ered planet called Proxima b is tan­ta­liz­ingly close to Earth and lies within the right dis­tance of its star to sup­port life. For Cor­dula Robinson, asso­ciate teaching pro­fessor in the Geospa­tial Infor­ma­tion Tech­nology pro­gram, the dis­covery sug­gests that “life out­side of our solar system is a pos­si­bility.” Here, she explains why all of us should take note of our nearest inter­stellar neighbor.

3Qs: Gawker case sets a ‘dangerous precedent’

Gawker​.com, the flag­ship site of Gawker Media, pub­lished its final piece Monday, Aug. 22. Here, Dan Kennedy, asso­ciate pro­fessor in the School of Jour­nalism, weighs in on the impli­ca­tions of the gossip site’s shut­tering, the “trou­bling” mechanics behind the suit that served as its demise, and what the future may hold for inde­pen­dent media organizations.

3Qs: Campaign shake-​​up positions Trump to ‘win,’ regardless of election result

Over the past week, Donald Trump has expressed regret for some of his caustic com­ments and reshuf­fled his cam­paign staff, fueling a theory that he’s laying the ground­work to build a media empire to rival Fox News. Dan Urman, a polit­ical sci­ence and public policy expert, dis­cusses the recent cam­paign moves and how the atten­tion to Trump’s “brand” may be a win for the can­di­date, regard­less of November’s outcome.

3Qs: Exploration and collaboration are taking gaming to the next level

Two of the most unique—and poten­tially revolutionary—games of all-​​time were released this summer, in “Pokémon Go” and “No Man’s Sky.” The seem­ingly very dif­ferent games share a striking sim­i­larity that says a lot about the future of the gaming industry. Here, Casper Harteveld, assis­tant pro­fessor of game design, explains why.

3Qs: Will states follow Feds’ lead on phasing out private prisons?

The Jus­tice Depart­ment will be phasing out the use of pri­vate prisons, citing safety con­cerns as well as their lack of reha­bil­i­ta­tive ser­vices. We asked Natasha Frost, a mass incar­cer­a­tion expert, to explain how this direc­tive might affect for-​​profit prisons at the state level and whether the pres­i­den­tial elec­tion could impact the DOJ’s new policy.

3Qs: The legal fallout of American swimmers’ robbery claim in Brazil

Brazilian law enforce­ment offi­cials said on Thursday that the Amer­ican swim­mers who claimed to have been robbed at gun­point during the Rio de Janeiro Games had fab­ri­cated the story. We asked law pro­fessor Dan Danielsen to explain where this inter­na­tional drama might go from here, with a par­tic­ular focus on the legal con­se­quences facing the swim­mers and the tepid rela­tion­ship between Amer­ican and Brazilian officials.

3Qs: The cat-​​and-​​mouse game of blocking digital ads

If you were using Face­book on a desktop last week, you may have noticed that your ad-​​blocking soft­ware was being blocked. That was a move by Face­book. We asked two North­eastern pro­fes­sors to explain how new strate­gies and tech­nolo­gies are changing the dig­ital land­scape for users, con­tent providers, and advertisers.

3Qs: How ‘nomadic architecture’ will shape Rio’s Olympic legacy

Two venues at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro—the 12,000-seat Future Arena and the 15,000-seat Aquatic Stadium—will be dis­man­tled and rebuilt into entirely new build­ings fol­lowing the games. We asked assis­tant pro­fessor David Fannon, an archi­tect and building sci­en­tist, to explain how Rio’s reliance on “nomadic archi­tec­ture” might ben­efit Brazil in the decades to come.

3Qs: What is greatness—and how do you achieve it?

More than 11,000 ath­letes are com­peting at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, show­casing their supe­rior skill in nearly 40 dif­ferent sports. We asked Rachel Rodgers, asso­ciate pro­fessor in the Depart­ment of Applied Psy­chology, to define the con­cept of great­ness and explain how everyday people might tap into their own great­ness, regard­less of wealth, fame, or skill set.