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Links for 2021-02-08
1 min read

Links for 2021-02-08

  1. This African gray parrot is the first animal to ever ask an existential question. “One of Alex’s most impressive moments was when he asked an existential question about his own appearance. He had been presented with a mirror, and—after observing himself for a moment—he asked, ‘What color?’ He then learned the word ‘gray’—the color of his feathers—after having it taught to him six times.” [Arnesia Young / My Modern Met]
  2. Nike's 'Go FlyEase' is its first 100 percent hands-free shoe. Not gonna lie, these are pretty sweet. [Ian Servantes / INPUT]
  3. What is a particle?. "With any other object, the object’s properties depend on its physical makeup — ultimately, its constituent particles. But those particles’ properties derive not from constituents of their own but from mathematical patterns. As points of contact between mathematics and reality, particles straddle both worlds with an uncertain footing." [Natalie Wolchover / Quanta Magazine]
  4. A rebel physicist has an elegant solution to a quantum mystery. "Because there is no physical evidence that anything can travel faster than the speed of light, the faster-than-light solutions are always thrown away. But, mathematically, these solutions are still valid. So Dragan thought, why not keep the faster-than-light solutions and see what happens?" [Benjamin Skuse / Wired]
  5. Diamond stays strong under highest pressure ever achieved in the lab. “[T]he researchers found that carbon kept its diamond structure for much longer than expected. Rather than converting into other forms, it seems that diamond’s molecular bonds are far more stable than the mineral was previously given credit for. […] The diamond phase of carbon appears to be the most stubborn structure ever explored.” [Michael Irving / New Atlas]
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