Matter & Energy

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illustration of a ring of light around a black hole

RECORDED IN LIGHT  A ring of light surrounds the boundary of a black hole in this artist illustration. Stephen Hawking theorizes that light on this boundary encodes information about everything that falls into the black hole.

photograph of miniature crime scene by Frances Glessner Lee

CSI: SCIENCE  From fingerprints to blood splatters to DNA, people leave all sorts of traces at the scene of a crime. To help identify suspects, scientists are beefing up classic forensic techniques, and coming up with new ones. One day, microbes and odors from a suspect’s body may give investigators additional pieces of evidence to examine.

computer

INACTIVE BUT USEFUL  An idle computer doesn’t do much except display a screensaver. But researchers showed that they could consistently glean information from a quantum computer even when the computer wasn’t running.

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