Is the mind algorithmic? Scientists often have very specific definitions for words that differ from general use. "To solve" is one of them.

Disagreements in how we use words can cause major confusion. Sometimes, someone uses the word “far” to mean 50 miles, and other times people use the word far to mean “the tv remote is too far” when it’s a mere READ MORE

Can cold-loving bacteria help to clean up oil spills? The enzyme that breaks apart a major component of oil might be less active in the cold...

For several decades scientists have been interested in the ability of psychrophilic (cold- loving) microbial communities to degrade the various components of crude oil, which is a process known as bioremediation. Because temperature has a direct impact on enzyme activity READ MORE

How Long Will Human Civilization Last? Combining fields of sustainability and astrobiology to probe human civilization longevity

Human-caused climate change, ocean acidification and species extinctions may eventually threaten the collapse of civilization, according to some scientists, while other people argue that for political or economic reasons we should allow industrial development to continue without restrictions. In a READ MORE

Massive tectonic event may have triggered explosion of animal life New analysis of geologic history may help solve the riddle of the 'Cambrian explosion'

A new analysis of geologic history may help solve the riddle of the “Cambrian explosion,” the rapid diversification of animal life in the fossil record 530 million years ago that has puzzled scientists since the time of Charles Darwin. A READ MORE

New but really old genetic ‘operating system’ led to evolution of complex organisms

The evolution of worms, insects, vertebrates and other “bilateral” animals — those with distinct left and right sides — from less complex creatures like jellyfish and sea anemones with “radial” symmetry may have been facilitated by the emergence of a READ MORE