Lucy Reading-Ikkanda/Quanta Magazine

Abstractions blog

Sum-of-Three-Cubes Problem Solved for ‘Stubborn’ Number 33

A number theorist with programming prowess has found a solution to 33 = x³ + y³ + z³, a much-studied equation that went unsolved for 64 years.

Art for "How the Brain Links Gestures, Perception and Meaning"
cognitive science

How the Brain Links Gestures, Perception and Meaning

Neuroscience has found that gestures are not merely important as tools of expression but as guides of cognition and perception.


She Finds Clues to Future Sustainability in Old Food Webs

By reconstructing prehistoric food webs and analyzing the diverse interactions of humans with other species, the ecologist Jennifer Dunne is developing a new understanding of sustainability through network science.

quantum physics

Quantum Machine Appears to Defy Universe’s Push for Disorder

One of the first quantum simulators has produced a puzzling phenomenon: a row of atoms that repeatedly pops back into place.

Art for "Karen Uhlenbeck, Uniter of Geometry and Analysis, Wins Abel Prize"
Abel Prize

Karen Uhlenbeck, Uniter of Geometry and Analysis, Wins Abel Prize

A founder of modern geometric analysis who produced “some of the most dramatic advances in mathematics in the last 40 years,” Uhlenbeck is the first woman to be awarded this top honor.

Art for "The Math That Tells Cells What They Are"
Art for "Mitochondria Direct the Fate of Stem Cells by Shape-Shifting"
developmental biology

Biologists Discover Unknown Powers in Mighty Mitochondria

Mitochondria are most famous as sources of metabolic energy. But by splitting and combining, they can also release chemical signals to regulate cell activities, including the generation of neurons.

Art for "Where Proof, Evidence and Imagination Intersect"
Quantized Academy

Where Proof, Evidence and Imagination Intersect

In mathematics, where proofs are everything, evidence is important too. But evidence is only as good as the model, and modeling can be dangerous business. So how much evidence is enough?


Math Duo Maps the Infinite Terrain of Minimal Surfaces

A pair of mathematicians has built on an obscure, 30-year-old mathematical theory to show that soap-filmlike minimal surfaces appear abundantly in a wide range of shapes.

Latest Puzzle

Art for "How to Find Simple Treasures in Complex Numbers"
insights puzzle

Solution: ‘How to Find Simple Treasures in Complex Numbers’

Puzzle solvers used “imaginary” numbers to solve a real world problem: finding long-lost treasure.

Latest Podcast

planetary science

A New World’s Extraordinary Orbit Points to Planet Nine

Astronomers argue that there’s an undiscovered giant planet far beyond the orbit of Neptune. A newly discovered rocky body has added evidence to the circumstantial case for it.

Latest Multimedia

Art for "The Trouble With Turbulence"
In Theory

The Trouble With Turbulence

Turbulence is everywhere, yet it is one of the most difficult concepts for physicists to understand.

About Quanta Magazine

Illuminating basic science and math research through public service journalism.

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Quanta Magazine is committed to in-depth, accurate journalism that serves the public interest. Each article braids the complexities of science with the malleable art of storytelling and is meticulously reported, edited and fact-checked. Launched and funded by the Simons Foundation, Quanta is editorially independent — our articles do not reflect or represent the views of the foundation.

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