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Listen to Quanta Magazine's in-depth news stories about developments in mathematics, theoretical physics, theoretical computer science and the basic life sciences. Quanta, an editorially independent magazine published by the Simons Foundation, seeks to enhance public understanding of basic research.

Listen to Quanta Magazine's in-depth news stories about developments in mathematics, theoretical physics, theoretical computer science and the basic life sciences. Quanta, an editorially independent magazine published by the Simons Foundation, seeks to enhance public understanding of basic research.
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Location:

United States

Description:

Listen to Quanta Magazine's in-depth news stories about developments in mathematics, theoretical physics, theoretical computer science and the basic life sciences. Quanta, an editorially independent magazine published by the Simons Foundation, seeks to enhance public understanding of basic research.

Language:

English


Episodes

How the Universe Got Its Bounce Back

1/31/2018
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Cosmologists have shown that it’s theoretically possible for a contracting universe to bounce and expand. The new work resuscitates an old idea that directly challenges the Big Bang theory of cosmic origins.

Duration:00:22:17

A Domesticated Dingo? No, but Some Are Getting Less Wild

1/23/2018
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Near an Australian desert mining camp, wild dingoes are losing their fear of humans. Their genetic and behavioral changes may echo those from the domestication of dogs.

Duration:00:17:02

Fossil Discoveries Challenge Ideas About Earth’s Start

1/22/2018
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A series of fossil finds suggests that life on Earth started earlier than anyone thought, calling into question a widely held theory of the solar system’s beginnings.

Duration:00:19:38

Mathematicians Find Wrinkle in Famed Fluid Equations

12/21/2017
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Two mathematicians prove that under certain extreme conditions, the Navier-Stokes equations output nonsense.

Duration:00:16:29

Light-Triggered Genes Reveal the Hidden Workings of Memory

12/14/2017
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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."

Duration:00:15:56

Secret Link Uncovered Between Pure Math and Physics

12/1/2017
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An eminent mathematician reveals that his advances in the study of millennia-old mathematical questions owe to concepts derived from physics.

Duration:00:19:32

How Bacteria Help Regulate Blood Pressure

11/30/2017
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Kidneys sniff out signals from gut bacteria for cues to lower blood pressure after meals. Our understanding of how the symbiotic microbes affect health is becoming much more molecular.

Duration:00:08:49

Choosy Eggs May Pick Sperm for Their Genes, Defying Mendel’s Law

11/15/2017
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The oldest law of genetics says that gametes combine randomly, but experiments hint that sometimes eggs select sperm actively for their genetic assets.

Duration:00:15:24

A Zombie Gene Protects Elephants From Cancer

11/7/2017
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Elephants did not evolve to become huge animals until after they turned a bit of genetic junk into a unique defense against inevitable tumors.

Duration:00:10:24

Best-Ever Algorithm Found for Huge Streams of Data

10/24/2017
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To efficiently analyze a firehose of data, scientists first have to break big numbers into bits.

Duration:00:15:29

Newfound Wormhole Allows Information to Escape Black Holes

10/23/2017
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Physicists theorize that a new “traversable” kind of wormhole could resolve a baffling paradox and rescue information that falls into black holes.

Duration:00:16:11

New Theory Cracks Open the Black Box of Deep Learning

9/21/2017
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A new idea is helping to explain the puzzling success of today’s artificial-intelligence algorithms — and might also explain how human brains learn.

Duration:00:15:57

Clever Machines Learn How to Be Curious

9/19/2017
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Computer scientists are finding ways to code curiosity into intelligent machines.

Duration:00:19:23

Interspecies Hybrids Play a Vital Role in Evolution

8/24/2017
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Hybrids, once treated as biological misfits, play a vital role in the evolution of many animal species. Now conservationists are trying to reconcile that truth with policies.

Duration:00:17:52

Mathematicians Tame Rogue Waves, Lighting Up Future of LEDs

8/22/2017
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The mathematician Svitlana Mayboroda and collaborators have figured out how to predict the behavior of electrons — a mathematical discovery that could have immediate practical effects.

Duration:00:14:05

What Made the Moon? New Ideas Try to Rescue a Troubled Theory

8/2/2017
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Textbooks say that the moon was formed after a Mars-size mass smashed the young Earth. But new evidence has cast doubt on that story, leaving researchers to dream up new ways to get a giant rock into orbit.

Duration:00:21:21

In Game Theory, No Clear Path to Equilibrium

7/18/2017
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John Nash’s notion of equilibrium is ubiquitous in economic theory, but a new study shows that it is often impossible to reach efficiently.

Duration:00:15:31

Pentagon Tiling Proof Solves Century-Old Math Problem

7/11/2017
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A French mathematician has completed the classification of all convex pentagons, and therefore all convex polygons, that tile the plane.

Duration:00:10:43

Can Microbes Encourage Altruism?

6/29/2017
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If gut bacteria can sway their hosts to be selfless, it could answer a riddle that goes back to Darwin.

Duration:00:15:42

Dark Matter Recipe Calls for One Part Superfluid

6/13/2017
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A different kind of dark matter could help to resolve an old celestial conundrum.

Duration:00:14:37