February 17, 2018 | Science News

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February 17, 2018View Digital Issue

Editor's Note

Acting Editor in Chief Elizabeth Quill explores the science behind children's play and how kids like to mimic the same things adults do.
By Elizabeth Quill | February 2, 2018
Magazine issue: Vol. 193, No. 3 , February 17, 2018 , p. 2

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Editor's Note

Acting Editor in Chief Elizabeth Quill explores the science behind children's play and how kids like to mimic the same things adults do.

Features

child's hands helping adult roll out dough
Given a choice between fantasy play and doing the things that adults do, children prefer reality-based tasks, studies suggest.
spinning disk
Some unusual finds from thousands of years ago are actually toys and children’s attempts at mimicking adult craftwork.
skyrmion illustration
Skyrmions are tiny magnetic swirls that are hard to undo and may be perfect for miniaturizing electronics.

News

daphnia
Rising CO2 in freshwaters may change how predators and prey interact in lakes.
illustration of hellscape
Heat from asteroid bombardment during Earth’s earliest eon wasn’t too intense for life to exist on the planet, a new study suggests.
partial jaw bone
If an ancient jaw found in an Israeli cave belongs to Homo sapiens, the humans left Africa tens of thousands of years earlier than we thought.
3-D laser image
Hovering 3-D images pave the way for futuristic displays that could be used for education or entertainment.
illustration of neutron star collision
X-rays from a neutron star collision have been getting brighter, and scientists are debating why.
supermassive black hole illustration
Three types of high-energy cosmic particles could all have the same source: black holes in galaxy clusters.
Mars
Mars was once lush with water. A new analysis of Martian climate data shows a mechanism that might have helped dehydrate the planet.
genetically identical cloned monkeys
Scientists have cloned two baby macaque monkeys with the same technique used to clone Dolly. The research could help advance the cloning of other species.
mouse nerve cells
A hairlike appendage sticking out of brain cells may be much more important in the brain than scientists realized.
sparrow
Nighttime lighting prolongs time that birds can pass along virus to mosquitoes that bite people.
E. coli colony
Bacteria use a modified form of cellulose to form sticky networks that can coat various surfaces.
Southeast Asian hunter-gatherers
Hunter-gatherers in the forests of the Malay Peninsula prove more adept at naming smells than their rice-farming neighbors, possibly because of their foraging culture.
woman in labor
Another study finds that labor lasts longer than is traditionally taught — an insight that could mean fewer unnecessary cesarean deliveries.
Two brothers mummies
Two ancient Egyptian mummies known as the Two Brothers had the same mother, but different dads.
map of flu activity
A new approach to flu vaccine development makes influenza virus extra sensitive to a powerful antiviral system.

Notebook

saiga
Higher than normal temperatures turned normally benign bacteria lethal, killing hundreds of thousands of the saiga antelopes.
pelican spider
A researcher used old and new specimens to discover 18 species of pelican spiders from Madagascar.
ITER fusion reactor
In 1968, scientists predicted that the world would soon use nuclear fusion as an energy source.
microscope images of smart textile
Reversible textile keeps skin at a comfortable temperature with thin layers of carbon and copper.

Reviews & Previews

thinking robot
In a new book, an artificial intelligence expert explores AI’s past, present and future.
 Vanitas Still Life With Flowers and Skull
A coffee-table book explores how humans have tried to understand death through the ages.

Letters to the Editor

Readers had questions about a supernova that continuously erupts, the difference between dark energy and dark matter, and more.

Science Visualized

simulation of bundled chromosomes
Scientists have figured out how cells quickly pack up their chromosomes before a cell divides.