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What does measuring distances in sailing and astrophysics have to with motion sickness?
insights puzzle

How Triangulation Leads to Knowledge

What does measuring distances in sailing and astrophysics have to with motion sickness?

A complete classification could lead to a wealth of new materials and technologies. But some exotic phases continue to resist understanding.
condensed matter physics

Physicists Aim to Classify All Possible Phases of Matter

A complete classification could lead to a wealth of new materials and technologies. But some exotic phases continue to resist understanding.

Evolution settled on a genetic code that uses four letters to name 20 amino acids. Synthetic biologists adding new bases to DNA will be free to improve on nature — if they can.
synthetic biology

Is a Bigger Genetic Code Better? Get Ready to Find Out

Evolution settled on a genetic code that uses four letters to name 20 amino acids. Synthetic biologists adding new bases to DNA will be free to improve on nature — if they can.

This holiday season, catch up on science and math news while solving our year-end crossword.
insights puzzle

Quanta’s Science and Math Crossword Puzzle

This holiday season, catch up on science and math news while solving our year-end crossword.

Two mathematicians prove that under certain extreme conditions, the Navier-Stokes equations output nonsense.
fluid dynamics

Mathematicians Find Wrinkle in Famed Fluid Equations

Two mathematicians prove that under certain extreme conditions, the Navier-Stokes equations output nonsense.

Corina Tarnita deciphers bizarre patterns in the soil created by competing life-forms.
Q&A

A Mathematician Who Decodes the Patterns Stamped Out by Life

Corina Tarnita deciphers bizarre patterns in the soil created by competing life-forms.

For decades, an origin-of-life story starring RNA has prevailed. New research may be shaking that theory’s hold on our understanding of life’s beginnings.
origins of life

The End of the RNA World Is Near, Biochemists Argue

For decades, an origin-of-life story starring RNA has prevailed. New research may be shaking that theory’s hold on our understanding of life’s beginnings.

The mother of all string theories passes a litmus test that, so far, no other candidate theory of quantum gravity has been able to match.
Abstractions blog

Why Is M-Theory the Leading Candidate for Theory of Everything?

The mother of all string theories passes a litmus test that, so far, no other candidate theory of quantum gravity has been able to match.

Nobel laureate Susumu Tonegawa’s lab is overturning old assumptions about how memories form, how recall works and whether lost memories might be restored from “silent engrams.”
neuroscience

Light-Triggered Genes Reveal the Hidden Workings of Memory

Nobel laureate Susumu Tonegawa’s lab is overturning old assumptions about how memories form, how recall works and whether lost memories might be restored from “silent engrams.”