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Quick Reads about Physics & Mathematics
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7 min read

Where Did Time Come From, and Why Does It Seem to Flow?

Paul Davies has a lot on his mind—or perhaps more accurate to say in his mind. A physicist at Arizona State University, he does research on a wide range of topics, from the abstract fields of theoretical physics and cosmology to the more concrete realm of astrobiology, the study of life in places beyond Earth. Nautilus sat down for a chat with Davies, and the discussion naturally drifted to the subject of time, a long-standing research interest of his. Here is a partial transcript of the interview, edited lightly for length and clarity. There might be some pre-geometry, that would give rise to
2 min read

Maryam Mirzakhani, Prize-Winning Mathematician, Dies At 40

Nearly three years after she became the first woman to win math's equivalent of a Nobel Prize, Maryam Mirzakhani has died of breast cancer at age 40. Her death was confirmed Saturday by Stanford University, where Mirzakhani had been a professor since 2008. Mirzakhani is survived by her husband, Jan Vondrák, and a daughter, Anahita — who once referred to her mother's work as "painting" because of the doodles and drawings that marked her process of working on proofs and problems, according to an obituary released by Stanford. "A light was turned off today .... far too soon. Breaks my heart," for
2 min read

Soccer Players Act Like Turbulent Particles, Study Says

New research shows the way soccer players move about the field bears similarities to the manner in which particles behave under the chaotic conditions of turbulence. This discovery is one of the many made in an effort to better understand turbulence, which is a surprisingly active and pressing field. More than half a millennium after Leonardo Da Vinci first coined the term, in 1507, physicists still don’t have a complete understanding of what goes on under conditions of turbulence, and no equation exists to accurately describe the phenomenon. That matters greatly, because turbulence is one of