All Articles

Q&A

Decoding the Remarkable Algorithms of Ants

The biologist Deborah Gordon has uncovered how ant colonies search efficiently without central organization, an insight that might improve computer networks.

Physics

The Fuzzball Fix for a Black Hole Paradox

By replacing black holes with fuzzballs — dense, star-like objects from string theory — researchers think they can avoid some knotty paradoxes at the edge of physics.

evolution

Biologists Invoke the Past in Modern Bacteria

By swapping ancient genes into modern E. coli, scientists hope to tease out the rules of evolution.

microbes

Below Our Feet, a World of Hidden Life

The soil teems with billions of hidden microbes. Researchers have begun to catalog how these organisms are changing the world.

Multimedia

The Nine Schoolgirls Challenge

Solve this variation of Thomas Kirkman’s famous 1850 puzzle by arranging girls in walking groups. And think fast — the clock is ticking.

Mathematics

A Design Dilemma Solved, Minus Designs

A 150-year-old conundrum about how to group people has been solved, but many puzzles remain.

Q&A

A Private View of Quantum Reality

Quantum theorist Christopher Fuchs explains how to solve the paradoxes of quantum mechanics. His price: physics gets personal.

evolution

How Dinosaurs Shrank and Became Birds

Modern birds emerged in a snap of evolutionary time through a series of simple genetic changes.

Physics

A New Theory to Explain the Higgs Mass

Three physicists have proposed a new solution to one of the deepest mysteries in particle physics: why the Higgs boson has such a tiny mass.