October 17, 2015 | Science News

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October 17, 2015

Editor's Note

Science News uses the opportunity of the 100th anniversary of the general theory of relativity to take a deep dive into one — perhaps the most important — of Einstein’s scientific contributions.
By Eva Emerson | October 10, 2015
Magazine issue: Vol. 188, No. 8 , October 17, 2015 , p. 2

Features

spacetime

Feature

After years of pondering the interplay of space, time, matter and gravity, Einstein produced, in a single month, an utter transformation of science’s conception of the cosmos: the general theory of relativity.
Illustration of a wormhole

Feature

The universe may be a vast quantum computer that safely encodes spacetime in an elaborate web of entanglement.
galaxy light

Feature

Astronomers have Einstein to thank for the tools that bring far-away galaxies and maybe even black hole collisions into view.
warped spacetime

Feature

Einstein struggled for years to solve the puzzle of general relativity. The pieces all fell into place in November 1915.

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Editor's Note

Science News uses the opportunity of the 100th anniversary of the general theory of relativity to take a deep dive into one — perhaps the most important — of Einstein’s scientific contributions.

Features

warped spacetime
Einstein struggled for years to solve the puzzle of general relativity. The pieces all fell into place in November 1915.
galaxy light
Astronomers have Einstein to thank for the tools that bring far-away galaxies and maybe even black hole collisions into view.
Illustration of a wormhole
The universe may be a vast quantum computer that safely encodes spacetime in an elaborate web of entanglement.
spacetime
After years of pondering the interplay of space, time, matter and gravity, Einstein produced, in a single month, an utter transformation of science’s conception of the cosmos: the general theory of relativity.

News

Amyloid-beta in the brain
Alzheimer’s, other disorders show similarity to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and other prion infections.
ants
The first survey of viruses in the globally invasive Argentine ant brings both potentially bad and good news.
skin cloak
A new invisibility cloak offers more stealth in a thinner package.
tsunami projection graphic
The September 16 earthquake that rattled Chile proved an unexpected test for new numerical calculations that could provide quicker forecasts of incoming tsunamis.
A northern elephant seal shedding
Seals spew amassed mercury when they shed, creating hotbeds of pollution in otherwise pristine coastal environments.
Barrier that keeps aging factors out of stem cells breaks down with age.
Illustration of Enceladus
A subsurface liquid water ocean envelops Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus.
measuring blood pressure
Preliminary results from NIH clinical trial suggest that lower blood pressure is better, but scientists have not yet published the data and open questions remain.
a latte
Caffeine can push the body’s clock back.
air pollution death map
Deadly air pollution comes from surprising sources, but toxicity of different types is still up in the air.
dogs looking up at human
Confronting a tough task, dogs are more likely than wolves to give up and gaze at a human
Mexican cavefish
Novel measurement feeds idea that tight energy budgets favored vision loss in cavefish.
Mars Express illustration
A decades-old disagreement between the Viking landers and spacecraft buzzing around Mars might come down to what time of day each was investigating the Red Planet’s ionosphere.

Notebook

Found at Tanzania’s Olduvai Gorge, pinkie bone is 1.84 million years old.
prairie voles
Bachelor prairie voles can’t tell one female from another, but saying “I do” means more than just settling down.
Oil palm plantation
Missing epigenetic mark makes for Bad Karma and poor palm oil crops.
Early Bird satellite
Satellite communication started as science fiction but soon became reality.

Reviews & Previews

Einstein
Scholars mark general relativity 100ths anniversary with books on history, biography, science.

Science Visualized

Nicene Creed
By scrutinizing a medieval scribe’s wiggly handwriting, scientists conclude that the writer suffered from essential tremor.