Bookmarks (64)

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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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    ‘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...

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    The Secrets of Zugzwang in Chess, Math and Pizzas | Quanta Magazine

    Learn the magic and math of how to win games when your opponent goes first. The...

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    Untangling Why Knots Are Important | Quanta Magazine

    Steven Strogatz explores the mysteries of knots with the mathematicians Colin Adams and Lisa Piccirillo. The...

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    Researchers Identify ‘Master Problem’ Underlying All Cryptography | Quanta Magazine

    The existence of secure cryptography depends on one of the oldest questions in computational complexity. The...

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    Mitochondria Double as Tiny Lenses in the Eye | Quanta Magazine

    The optical properties of mitochondrial bundles in the retina may improve how efficiently the eye captures...

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    Father-Son Team Solves Geometry Problem With Infinite Folds | Quanta Magazine

    The result could help researchers answer a larger question about flattening objects from the fourth dimension...

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    Beyond the Second Law of Thermodynamics | Quanta Magazine

    Thanks to the power of fluctuation relations, physicists are taking the second law of thermodynamics to...

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    In Music and Math, Lillian Pierce Builds Landscapes | Quanta Magazine

    Lillian Pierce wants to transform access to the world of mathematics, while making headway on problems...

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    Massive Black Holes Shown to Act Like Quantum Particles | Quanta Magazine

    Physicists are using quantum math to understand what happens when black holes collide. In a surprise,...

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    Cells Blaze Their Own Trails to Navigate Through the Body | Quanta Magazine

    With self-generated gradients of chemicals and physical tension, cells in the body steer themselves to vital...

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    What a Math Party Game Tells Us About Graph Theory | Quanta Magazine

    Play this simple math game with your friends to gain insights into fundamental principles of graph...

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    Brain Chemical Helps Signal to Neurons When to Start a Movement | Quanta Magazine

    Dopamine, a neurochemical often associated with reward behavior, also seems to help organize precisely when the...

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    A New Tool for Finding Dark Matter Digs Up Nothing | Quanta Magazine

    Physicists are devising clever new ways to exploit the extreme sensitivity of gravitational wave detectors like...

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    Deep Curiosity Inspires The Joy of Why Podcast | Quanta Magazine

    The noted mathematician and author Steven Strogatz explains how the conversations with experts in his new...

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    Before Brains, Mechanics May Have Ruled Animal Behavior | Quanta Magazine

    Biomechanical interactions, rather than neurons, control the movements of one of the simplest animals. The discovery...

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    Icy Antimatter Experiment Surprises Physicists | Quanta Magazine

    An experiment conducted on hybrid matter-antimatter atoms has defied researchers’ expectations. The post An Antimatter Experiment...

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    Machine Learning Reimagines the Building Blocks of Computing | Quanta Magazine

    Traditional algorithms power complicated computational tools like machine learning. A new approach, called algorithms with predictions,...

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    Tiny Galaxies Reveal Secrets of Supermassive Black Holes | Quanta Magazine

    Dwarf galaxies weren’t supposed to have big black holes. Their surprise discovery has revealed clues about...

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    Will Transformers Take Over Artificial Intelligence? | Quanta Magazine

    A simple algorithm that revolutionizes how neural networks approach language is now taking on image classification...

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    Math’s ‘Oldest Problem Ever’ Gets a New Answer | Quanta Magazine

    A new proof significantly strengthens a decades-old result about the ubiquity of ways to represent whole...

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    Peptides on Stardust May Have Provided a Shortcut to Life | Quanta Magazine

    The discovery that short peptides can form spontaneously on cosmic dust hints at more of a...

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    In New Math Proofs, Artificial Intelligence Plays to Win | Quanta Magazine

    A new computer program fashioned after artificial intelligence systems like AlphaGo has solved several open problems...

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    Scientists Watch a Memory Form in a Living Brain | Quanta Magazine

    While watching a fearful memory take shape in the brain of a living fish, neuroscientists see...

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    How Mathematicians Make Sense of Chaos | Quanta Magazine

    Dynamical systems can be chaotic and impossible to predict, but mathematicians have discovered tools to help...

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    Four Years On, New Experiment Sees No Sign of ‘Cosmic Dawn’ | Quanta Magazine

    When astronomers tried to confirm a signal from the birth of the first stars after the...

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    Cryptographers Achieve Perfect Secrecy With Imperfect Devices | Quanta Magazine

    For the first time, experiments demonstrate the possibility of sharing secrets with perfect privacy — even...

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    Most Complete Simulation of a Cell Probes Life’s Hidden Rules | Quanta Magazine

    A 3D digital model of a “minimal cell” leads scientists closer to understanding the barest requirements...

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    In Search of Cracks in Albert Einstein’s Theory of Gravity | Quanta Magazine

    Celia Escamilla-Rivera is combining large data sets with supercomputers to test general relativity against its little-known...

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    Play First and Lose: Zugzwang in Chess, Math and Pizzas | Quanta Magazine

    How to win games by going second and leaving your opponent with no good options. The...

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    AI Overcomes Stumbling Block on Brain-Inspired Hardware | Quanta Magazine

    Algorithms that use the brain’s communication signal can now work on analog neuromorphic chips, which closely...