# Archive

## Latest Articles

### Maze Proof Establishes a ‘Backbone’ for Statistical Mechanics

Four mathematicians have estimated the chances that there’s a clear path through a random maze.

### Radio Maps May Reveal the Universe’s Biggest Magnetic Fields

A controversial technique has produced detailed maps of the magnetic fields in colossal galaxy clusters. If confirmed, the approach could be used to reveal where cosmic magnetic fields come from.

### What Your Brain Is Doing When You’re Not Doing Anything

When your mind is wandering, your brain’s “default mode” network is active. Its discovery 20 years ago inspired a raft of research into networks of brain regions and how they interact with each other.

### In a ‘Dark Dimension,’ Physicists Search for the Universe’s Missing Matter

An idea derived from string theory suggests that dark matter is hiding in a (relatively) large extra dimension. The theory makes testable predictions that physicists are investigating now.

### What Makes for ‘Good’ Mathematics?

Terence Tao, who has been called the “Mozart of Mathematics,” wrote an essay in 2007 about the common ingredients in “good” mathematical research. In this episode, the Fields Medalist joins Steven Strogatz to revisit the topic.

### Plants Find Light Using Gaps Between Their Cells

A mutant seedling revealed how plant tissues scatter incoming light, allowing plants to sense its direction and move toward it.

### How to Build an Origami Computer

Two mathematicians have shown that origami can, in principle, be used to perform any possible computation.

### Researchers Approach New Speed Limit for Seminal Problem

Integer linear programming can help find the answer to a variety of real-world problems. Now researchers have found a much faster way to do it.

### The Quest to Decode the Mandelbrot Set, Math’s Famed Fractal

For decades, a small group of mathematicians has patiently unraveled the mystery of what was once math’s most popular picture. Their story shows how technology transforms even the most abstract mathematical landscapes.