The biologist Joan Strassmann discusses cooperation in social insects, how amoebas can teach us about competition, and why the definition of “organism” needs an overhaul.

A single genetic change and some clever geometry show how single-celled organisms can band together to form cooperative multicellular entities.

The solution to this month’s puzzle explains the artful mathematics behind symmetrical patterns.

A newly discovered class of microbe could help to resolve one of the biggest and most controversial mysteries in evolution — how simple microbes transformed into the complex cells that produced animals, plants and fungi.

The physical nature of computers might reveal deep truths about their uniquely powerful abstract abilities.

The physicist Gabriela González is on the cusp of finding the first direct evidence of gravitational waves — soundlike wobbles in space-time produced by black holes and their kin.

A theorem for coloring a large class of “perfect” mathematical networks could ease the way for a long-sought general coloring proof.

By examining regions shared between some of nature’s most variable genes, malaria researchers are piecing together an understanding of a deadly parasite.

Complex natural systems defy analysis using a standard mathematical toolkit, so one ecologist is throwing out the equations.