Category: Mathematics

  • Why doesn’t any animal have three legs?

    Why doesn’t any animal have three legs?

    If ‘Why?’ is the first question in science, ‘Why not?’ must be a close second. Sometimes it’s worth thinking about why something does not exist. Such as a truly three-legged animal. At least one researcher has been pondering the non-existence of tripeds. “Almost all animals are bilateral,” he said. The code for having two sides […]

  • Chaos. Numbers. Simulations.

    Chaos. Numbers. Simulations.

    Digital computers use numbers based on flawed representations of real numbers, which may lead to inaccuracies when simulating the motion of molecules, weather systems and fluids, find scientists. The study, published today in Advanced Theory and Simulations, shows that digital computers cannot reliably reproduce the behaviour of ‘chaotic systems’ which are widespread. This fundamental limitation […]

  • Old mathematics… Broken cosmos… Blurry image…

    Old mathematics… Broken cosmos… Blurry image…

    By combining cutting-edge machine learning with 19th-century mathematics, a Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) mathematician worked to make NASA spacecraft lighter and more damage tolerant by developing methods to detect imperfections in carbon nanomaterials used to make composite rocket fuel tanks and other spacecraft structures. Using machine learning, neural networks, and an old mathematical equation, Randy […]

  • 1+1 = ?

    1+1 = ?

    Researchers from UNIGE and the University of Bourgogne Franche-Comté tested the degree to which our worldly knowledge and perspective interferes with mathematical reasoning by presenting twelve problems to two distinct groups. The first group consisted of adults who had taken a standard university course, while the second was composed of high-level mathematicians. When faced with […]

  • Changing geometry. Blurry lines…

    Changing geometry. Blurry lines…

    Atomic interactions in everyday solids and liquids are so complex that some of these materials’ properties continue to elude physicists’ understanding. Solving the problems mathematically is beyond the capabilities of modern computers, so scientists at Princeton University have turned to an unusual branch of geometry instead. Researchers led by Andrew Houck, a professor of electrical […]