A Unified Theory of Randomness
Researchers have uncovered deep connections among different types of random objects, illuminating hidden geometric structures.
After Black Holes Collide, a Puzzling Flash
A satellite spotted a burst of light just as gravitational waves rolled in from the collision of two black holes. Was the flash a cosmic coincidence, or do astrophysicists need to rethink what black holes can do?
Taming Superconductors With String Theory
The physicist Subir Sachdev borrows tools from string theory to understand the puzzling behavior of high-temperature superconductors.
Hope Rekindled for Perplexing Proof
Three years ago, a solitary mathematician released an impenetrable proof of the famous abc conjecture. At a recent conference dedicated to the work, optimism mixed with bafflement.
Math Quartet Joins Forces on Unified Theory
A new breakthrough that bridges number theory and geometry is just the latest triumph for a close-knit group of mathematicians.
The Information Theory of Life
The polymath Christoph Adami is investigating life’s origins by reimagining life as self-perpetuating information strings.
A New Design for Cryptography’s Black Box
A recent cryptographic breakthrough has proven difficult to put into practice. But new advances show how near-perfect computer security might be surprisingly close at hand.
At Tiny Scales, a Giant Burst on Tree of Life
A new technique for finding and characterizing microbes has boosted the number of known bacteria by almost 50 percent, revealing a hidden world all around us.
Will Computers Redefine the Roots of Math?
The Fields medalist Vladimir Voevodsky has died at 51. This 2015 article describes his computer-aided quest to eliminate human error and rewrite the century-old rules underlying all of mathematics.