Ants are more methodical than we may give them credit
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Evrim Yazgin
2h ago
Underestimate ants at your own peril. You may be forgiven for observing ants seeking out food and thinking that their search pattern involves a random, somewhat frantic walk in any-which direction. But new research suggests you’d be wrong. In fact, a study of the walking patterns of a species of rock ant are the ANT-ithesis of aimless wandering. Scientists from the University of Arizona, Tucson found that the ants intersperse random walks with systematic meandering to create a very orderly search pattern. “Previously, researchers in the field assumed that ants move in a pure random walk when ..read more
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COVID-19 led to largest learning disruption in history
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Petra Stock
2h ago
The loss of face-to-face lessons during the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing interuptions led to “one of the largest disruptions to learning in history”, say Oxford University education researchers. Their study, published in Nature Human Behaviour, found children lost the equivalent of 35% of a school year – more than a term of learning – due to COVID-19 school closures, remote learning, and disruptions throughout 2020 – 22. And the learning deficit was higher in mathematics than reading. The findings are based on a systematic review of research from 15 high- and middle-income countries, includi ..read more
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Quantum entanglement breakthrough sees Danish physicists achieve world first
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Evrim Yazgin
2h ago
For the first time, physicists have achieved quantum mechanical entanglement of two stable light sources. Called “spooky action at a distance” by Einstein, quantum entanglement is a seemingly magical phenomenon. Entangled particles, for example light particles called “photons”, share a physical state. Changes to the physical state of one particle in an entangled pair instantaneously causes the same change to occur in its partner – no matter how far apart they are separated. While quantum mechanical theory is clear on the existence of this effect in the universe, creating entangled pairs of p ..read more
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Dozens of animal skulls found in Neanderthal cave, suggesting they had symbolic use
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Evrim Yazgin
19h ago
Neanderthals placed a large number of animal skulls in a Spanish cave 40,000 years ago. But why? The discovery has scientists puzzled. Cueva Des-Cubierta is a multi-level cave system in the Madrid region of Spain, first discovered in 1978. Archaeologists have studied the caves for decades as the location possesses indications that they were used in Neanderthal rituals. Researchers climbed to the third level of the cave and found 35 large animal skulls. All the crania came from animals which sported either horns or antlers. Among them were 28 bovine animals including bison and aurochs, five d ..read more
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You may have missed… Powerful Owls, bio printed artificial skin, discovery of funky amphibian fossil, and brains detecting movement
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Imma Perfetto
22h ago
Triassic fossils that reveal origins of living amphibians Palaeontologists from the US have discovered the oldest-known caecilian fossils ever – extending the history of caecilians 35 million years back to Triassic Period, roughly 250 million to 200 million years ago. Modern caecilians are limbless amphibians which look like large worms or snakes, with cylindrical bodies and a compact, bullet-shaped skull that helps them burrow underground. Today, they make their home burrowing in leaf-litter or soil in South and Central America, Africa, and Southern Asia. The fossil was discovered in 2019 du ..read more
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Literally running away from your problems might just give you new ones
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Imma Perfetto
1d ago
It’s well known that recreational running can have physical and mental health benefits, but new research suggests doing it as a way to escape from your everyday problems might lead to exercise dependence. It’s a form of addiction to physical activity which can result in uncontrollable, excessive exercise behaviour and can cause a multitude of health issues ranging from pain and injury to illness. Specifically, says the study in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, different kinds of escapism can motivate people to run recreationally, but using running to escape from negative experiences, rath ..read more
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Heading for a big city? Be warned” they harbour big inequality
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Ellen Phiddian
2d ago
As cities get bigger, the people that live in them get richer – or, at least, some do. Over the past few years, researchers have noted that, almost universally, cities with larger populations have better average wealth, higher productivity and interconnectivity than smaller cities. This phenomenon has been called “urban scaling”. But a new paper in Nature Human Behaviour shows these benefits are not felt evenly. “The higher-than-expected economic outputs of larger cities critically depend on the extreme outcomes of the successful few,” says study co-author Marc Keuschnigg, associate professor ..read more
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Disadvantaged schools buck global trend and limit learning loss during Covid19
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Cosmos
2d ago
By Tasha Wibawa, 360info and Professor Jennifer Gore, University of Newcastle The worst of the global pandemic may feel like it’s over for many, but for teachers, students and parents the disruption to children’s education systems has lingered as have concerns about learning loss. In Australia, government data released last month found national school attendance has progressively declined since the pandemic. But the University of Newcastle has published a new report showing that while students around the world suffered from learning loss due to COVID-19, disadvantaged children ..read more
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Mating prairie voles suggest that what we know about oxytocin could be all wrong
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Jacinta Bowler
2d ago
The role of the ‘love hormone’ as a non-negotiable for social attachment is being questioned by research on the humble prairie vole. A study published on Friday has shown that prairie voles – which mate for life – can still form attachments with their mates and be a caring parent without oxytocin, or the love hormone. This contradicts forty years of research which suggested that oxytocin receptor signalling was an essential pathway for the development of social behaviours. “We were all shocked that no matter how many different ways we tried to test this, the voles demonstrated a very robust s ..read more
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COVID-19 in Australia by the numbers: Week ending 27 January
Cosmos Magazine | The Science of Everything
by Cosmos
3d ago
Case numbers continue to decline across Australia’s states and territories, however reported deaths in some jurisdictions have increased. Hospitalisations and ICU numbers are down across the board. While official reporting remains a minimum figure, given individuals are not obliged to report positive results, January 27’s numbers continue the downward case trajectory from over 110,000 reported cases before Christmas, to barely 20,000 this week. Nationally, there has been no change to the coverage of first, second and third vaccine doses, with a marginal increase in fourth dose uptake. New Sou ..read more
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