Peacocks can easily fluttered into the air, but only up to a limited gap. Unlike other birds, they cannot prolong their flight, but these small drifts come in handy while scavenging for food, and are extremely important in escaping deadly killers. As soon as any predator approaches them, they ascend to a nearby tree for safety (check out the video below).
Collected from the Ross Sea shelf in southern Antarctica, this 9.8-inch-long (25-centimeter-long) giant sea spider was one of 30,000 animals found during a 35-day census in early 2008. The marine arachnids, which prey on hydroids and bryzoans - branching, coral-like animals - are larger and more common in Antarctic waters than anywhere else on Earth. Cold temperatures, few predators, and high levels of oxygen in seawater could explain their gargantuan size.
For decades, scientists have debated whether rapid eye movement sleep - the phase where dreams appear - is directly involved in memory formation. Now, a study provides evidence that REM sleep does, indeed, play this role in mice.
In this new study, the researchers used optogenetics, a recently developed technology that enables scientists to target precisely a population of neurons and control its activity by light. For this study, the neurons in the hippocampus were targeted (hippocampus being the structure that is critical for memory formation during wakefulness and is known as the 'GPS system' of the brain).
To test the long-term spatial memory of mice, the scientists trained the rodents to spot a new object placed in a controlled environm [ ... ]
A Turing machine is a hypothetical machine thought of by the mathematician Alan Turing in 1936. Despite its simplicity, the machine can simulate ANY computer algorithm, no matter how complicated it is.
Put simply, the Turing machine isn't a physical machine, but you can imagine it as an never-ending line of tape, broken down into squares. On each of those squares is a 1, a 0, or nothing at all. The machine reads one square at a time, and depending on what it reads, it performs an action - it either erases the number and writes a new one before moving on, or simply moves on to a different square.
Each of those actions, which mathematicians call a 'state', are determined by the mathematical algorithm or problem the Turing machine has been desi [ ... ]
Mary Ann Franco, now 70 years old, lost here eyesight in 1995 when a car accident damaged her spine. More than two decades after the initial injury, she fell in her home and injured her neck, sending her to the hospital once again to seek treatment for pain in her arm and back. After doctors decided to perform surgery on her back to alleviate her pain, they happened to cure her blindness. It is suspected that her first injury caused a lack of blood flow to the brain that controls eyesight, and this operation restored it. Interestingly, Franco has been colour blind since birth, but the operation seems to have fixed that problem, too.
The spinal cords running down our spines carry a bundle of nerve tissue and other cells from the base of the b [ ... ]
A non-Newtonian fluid is a fluid with properties that differ in any way from those of Newtonian fluids - it changes its viscosity almost instantly under stress, so you can punch it as a liquid and it’ll turn into a solid (watch the video below), and you can literally walk across a pool of it. On the contrary, a Newtonian fluid is defined as the perfect fluid, where its viscosity is influenced mostly by its temperature and pressure. So if you have water at a moderate temperature and pressure, it will continue to act like a liquid no matter how much you punch it. Depending on how you manipulate it, the fluid-like substance can change states from a liquid to a solid, but how this happens has remained a conundrum amongst physicists.
Infant swaddling, an old practice that has recently gained popularity in the United States, may be linked to increased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). A new review of 760 SIDS cases in the journal Pediatrics found that infants who were swaddled - wrapped in light cloth with only the head exposed - were about a third more likely to die from SIDS. The risk was higher among infants sleeping on their stomachs or sides, positions already known to be more dangerous for sleeping babies. SIDS risk among swaddled infants was also higher for children older than 6 months, suggesting that swaddling should be stopped when babies are able to start rolling over. The researchers cautioned that these results should be taken with a grain of salt [ ... ]