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# Abstractions blog

## Latest Articles

### A Tower of Conjectures That Rests Upon a Needle

On its surface, the Kakeya conjecture is a simple statement about rotating needles. But it underlies a wealth of mathematics.

### How Scientists Are Tackling the Tricky Task of Solar Cycle Prediction

Scientists have struggled to accurately forecast the strength of the sun’s 11-year cycle — even after centuries of solar observations.

### Alan Turing and the Power of Negative Thinking

Mathematical proofs based on a technique called diagonalization can be relentlessly contrarian, but they help reveal the limits of algorithms.

### The Usefulness of a Memory Guides Where the Brain Saves It

New research finds that the memories useful for future generalizations are held in the brain separately from those recording unusual events.

### New Codes Could Make Quantum Computing 10 Times More Efficient

Quantum computing is still really, really hard. But the rise of a powerful class of error-correcting codes suggests that the task might be slightly more feasible than many feared.

### The AI Tools Making Images Look Better

Researchers have discovered ways around a fundamental trade-off between accuracy and beauty in digital images.

### Quaking Giants Might Solve the Mysteries of Stellar Magnetism

In their jiggles and shakes, red giant stars encode a record of the magnetic fields near their cores.

### Math Proof Draws New Boundaries Around Black Hole Formation

For a half century, mathematicians have tried to define the exact circumstances under which a black hole is destined to exist. A new proof shows how a cube can help answer the question.

### Risky Giant Steps Can Solve Optimization Problems Faster

New results break with decades of conventional wisdom for the gradient descent algorithm.