Bookmarks (70)

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    Number Theorist James Maynard Wins the Fields Medal | Quanta Magazine

    On his way to winning a Fields Medal, James Maynard has cut a path through simple-sounding...

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    Hugo Duminil-Copin Wins the Fields Medal | Quanta Magazine

    With Hugo Duminil-Copin, thinking rarely happens without moving. His insights into the flow-related properties of complex...

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    Can Computers Be Mathematicians? | Quanta Magazine

    Artificial intelligence has bested humans at problem-solving challenges like chess and Go. Is mathematics research next?...

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    Protein Blobs Linked to Alzheimer’s Affect Aging in All Cells | Quanta Magazine

    Protein buildups like those seen around neurons in Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other brain diseases occur in...

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    Puzzles on Weighing Truth With a Balance Scale | Quanta Magazine

    In recreational mathematics, the balance scale is an endless source of puzzles that require precise and...

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    AI Makes Strides in Virtual Worlds More Like Our Own | Quanta Magazine

    Intelligent beings learn by interacting with the world. Artificial intelligence researchers have adopted a similar strategy...

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    New Proof Shows When Structure Must Emerge in Graphs | Quanta Magazine

    A new proof identifies precisely how large a mathematical graph must be before it contains a...

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    The Spooky Quantum Phenomenon You’ve Never Heard Of | Quanta Magazine

    Quantum computers may derive their power from the “magical” way that properties of particles change depending...

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    An Immunologist Fights Covid with Tweets and a Nasal Spray | Quanta Magazine

    Akiko Iwasaki, an immunologist who became a lifeline for the worried and the curious during the...

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    Special Surfaces Remain Distinct in Four Dimensions | Quanta Magazine

    For decades mathematicians have searched for a specific pair of surfaces that can’t be transformed into...

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    What Is Life? | Quanta Magazine

    Without a good definition of life, how do we look for it on alien planets? Steven...

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    Wheel Made of ‘Odd Matter’ Spontaneously Rolls Uphill | Quanta Magazine

    Physicists have solved a key problem of robotic locomotion by revising the usual rules of interaction...

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    The Brain Has a ‘Low-Power Mode’ That Blunts Our Senses | Quanta Magazine

    Neuroscientists uncovered an energy-saving mode in vision-system neurons that works at the cost of being able...

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    The Computer Scientist Who Parlays Failures Into Breakthroughs | Quanta Magazine

    Daniel Spielman solves important problems by thinking hard — about other questions. The post The Computer...

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    Astronomers Reimagine the Making of the Planets

    Observations of faraway planets have forced a near-total rewrite of the story of how our solar...

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    Researchers Achieve ‘Absurdly Fast’ Algorithm for Network Flow | Quanta Magazine

    Computer scientists can now solve a decades-old problem in practically the time it takes to write...

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    Reshuffled Rivers Bolster the Amazon’s Hyper-Biodiversity | Quanta Magazine

    The lush biodiversity of the Amazon may be due in part to the dynamics of branching...

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    Graduate Student’s Side Project Proves Prime Number Conjecture | Quanta Magazine

    Jared Duker Lichtman, 26, has proved a longstanding conjecture relating prime numbers to a broad class...

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    Brain-Signal Proteins Evolved Before Animals Did | Quanta Magazine

    Some animal neuropeptides have been around longer than nervous systems. The post Brain-Signal Proteins Evolved Before...

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    Impossible-Seeming Surfaces Confirmed Decades After Conjecture | Quanta Magazine

    Using ideas borrowed from graph theory, two mathematicians have shown that extremely complex surfaces are easy...

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    What Is the Langlands Program? | Quanta Magazine

    The Langlands program provides a beautifully intricate set of connections between various areas of mathematics, pointing...

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    How Could Life Evolve From Cyanide? | Quanta Magazine

    How did life arise on Earth? Steven Strogatz speaks with the Nobel Prize-winning biologist Jack Szostak...

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    How to Make the Universe Think for Us | Quanta Magazine

    Physicists are building neural networks out of vibrations, voltages and lasers, arguing that the future of...

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    The Secret Math Behind Mind-Reading Magic Tricks | Quanta Magazine

    Four puzzle solutions reveal different ways to divine someone’s hidden number with impossibly little information. The...

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    How Math Can Improve Your Wordle Score | Quanta Magazine

    A bit of information theory can help you analyze — and improve — your Wordle game....

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    Life’s First Peptides May Have Grown on RNA | Quanta Magazine

    RNA and peptides coevolving in the primordial world might have jointly served as a precursor to...

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    How Computer Scientists Learned to Reinvent the Proof | Quanta Magazine

    Why verify every line of a proof, when just a few checks will do? The post...

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    Simple Gene Circuits Hint at How Stem Cells Differentiate | Quanta Magazine

    Synthetic biology experiments suggest a “MultiFate” model for how genetically identical cells become the many different...

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    Will the James Webb Space Telescope Reveal Another Earth? | Quanta Magazine

    The space telescope is one of the most ambitious scientific projects ever undertaken. Marcia Rieke and...

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    How Complex Is a Knot? New Proof Reveals Ranking System That Works | Quanta Magazine

    “Ribbon concordance” will let mathematicians compare knots by linking them across four-dimensional space. The post How...

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    Puzzling Quantum Scenario Appears Not to Conserve Energy | Quanta Magazine

    By resolving a paradox about light in a box, researchers hope to clarify the concept of...

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    ‘Machine Scientists’ Distill the Laws of Physics From Raw Data

    Researchers say we’re on the cusp of “GoPro physics,” where a camera can point at an...

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    Why ‘De-Extinction’ Is Impossible (But Could Work Anyway) | Quanta Magazine

    Several projects are aiming to bring back mammoths and other species that have vanished from the...

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    In Test Tubes, RNA Molecules Evolve Into a Tiny Ecosystem | Quanta Magazine

    When researchers gave a genetic molecule the ability to replicate, it evolved over time into a...

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    Where Do Space, Time and Gravity Come From? | Quanta Magazine

    Einstein’s description of curved space-time doesn’t easily mesh with a universe made up of quantum wavefunctions....

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    How Do Math Magicians Know Your Number? | Quanta Magazine

    Mathematical magic can seem like mind reading. Your job is to reveal the secret behind these...

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    Physicists Show How Quantum Uncertainty Sharpens Measurements | Quanta Magazine

    Throwing out data seems to make measurements of distances and angles more precise. The reason why...

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    Mathematicians Coax Fluid Equations Into Nonphysical Solutions | Quanta Magazine

    The famed Navier-Stokes equations can lead to cases where more than one result is possible, but...

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    Secrets of the Moon’s Permanent Shadows Are Coming to Light | Quanta Magazine

    Robots are about to venture into the sunless depths of lunar craters to investigate ancient water...

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    What Happens When We Give Animals Our Diseases? | Quanta Magazine

    While it’s understandable to focus on the diseases affecting humans, it’s important to study how our...

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    Ancient Genes for Symbiosis Hint at Mitochondria’s Origins | Quanta Magazine

    Was the addition of mitochondria a first step in the formation of complex cells or one...

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    Elegant Six-Page Proof Reveals the Emergence of Random Structure | Quanta Magazine

    Two young mathematicians have astonished their colleagues with a full proof of the Kahn-Kalai conjecture —...

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    New Proof Reveals the Hidden Structure of Common Equations | Quanta Magazine

    Van der Waerden’s conjecture mystified mathematicians for 85 years. Its solution shows how polynomial roots relate...

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    Why Is Inflammation a Dangerous Necessity? | Quanta Magazine

    The immune system protects us from a full spectrum of pathogens, but without balance, it can...

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    Pondering the Bits That Build Space-Time and Brains | Quanta Magazine

    Vijay Balasubramanian investigates whether the fabric of the universe might be built from information, and what...

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    In Worms, Inheritance Beyond Genes Can Help Evolution | Quanta Magazine

    Traits from RNA molecules passed between multiple generations of worms can work with genetic changes to...

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    Researchers Glimpse How AI Gets So Good at Language Processing | Quanta Magazine

    Language processing programs are notoriously hard to interpret, but smaller versions can provide important insights into...

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    Scientists Unravel How the Tonga Volcano Caused Worldwide Tsunamis | Quanta Magazine

    The Tonga eruption in January was “basically like Krakatoa 2.” This time, geophysicists could explain the...

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    Deep Learning Poised to ‘Blow Up’ Famed Fluid Equations | Quanta Magazine

    For centuries, mathematicians have tried to prove that Euler’s fluid equations can produce nonsensical answers. A...

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    Life With Longer Genetic Codes Seems Possible — but Less Likely | Quanta Magazine

    Life could use a more expansive genetic code in theory, but new work shows that improving...