All Articles

Q&A

Searching for the Algorithms Underlying Life

January 28, 2016

The biological world is computational at its core, argues computer scientist Leslie Valiant.

neuroscience

New Clues to How the Brain Maps Time

January 26, 2016

The same brain cells that track location in space appear to also count beats in time. The research suggests that our thoughts may take place on a mental space-time canvas.

Q&A

Taming Superconductors With String Theory

January 21, 2016

The physicist Subir Sachdev borrows tools from string theory to understand the puzzling behavior of high-temperature superconductors.

quantum physics

Quantum Weirdness Now a Matter of Time

January 19, 2016

Bizarre quantum bonds connect distinct moments in time, suggesting that quantum links — not space-time — constitute the fundamental structure of the universe.

insights puzzle

Sleeping Beauty’s Necker Cube Dilemma

January 14, 2016

Like a visually ambiguous Necker cube, the famous Sleeping Beauty problem can be perceived in two seemingly valid ways.

Physics

String Theory Meets Loop Quantum Gravity

January 12, 2016

Two leading candidates for a “theory of everything,” long thought to be incompatible, may be two sides of the same coin.

Quantized Columns

Time’s (Almost) Reversible Arrow

January 7, 2016

The irreversibility of time may be a clue as to what makes up the universe’s dark matter.

Biology

How Strange Twists in DNA Orchestrate Life

January 5, 2016

Coils and twirls in DNA’s double-helix change how the molecule behaves, opening a new role for topology in the study of life.

insights puzzle

Solution: ‘The Fabulously Fair Feast’

December 22, 2015

The solution to this month’s puzzle explains how to design a Sudoku square to figure out the likes and dislikes of four or eight finicky friends.