Bookmarks for April 14th

  • Enemy me on Facebook – Ideas – The Boston Globe – In a friend-obsessed world, research is uncovering real benefits to having a nemesis

    having a nemesis is in many ways as intense and personal a relationship as having a friend, and studies in the animal world and the human one are revealing that those relationships matter, too. For animals, dear enemies may allow individuals to spend less time and energy fighting with foes; for humans, direct personal rivals appear to help people push their performance. A small number of researchers are exploring how these relationships affect our motivation and success — and although “enemy studies” isn’t likely to ever become its own discipline, their findings provide a different and perhaps more realistic way to think about how competition works.
    Tags: research science comics

  • ‘Sounds of silence’ proving a hit: World’s fastest random number generator – The researchers — Professor Ping Koy Lam, Dr Thomas Symul and Dr Syed Assad from the ANU ARC Centre of Excellence for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology — have tuned their very sensitive light detectors to listen to vacuum — a region of space that is empty.

    Professor Lam said vacuum was once thought to be completely empty, dark, and silent until the discovery of the modern quantum theory. Since then scientists have discovered that vacuum is an extent of space that has virtual sub-atomic particles spontaneously appearing and disappearing.
    Tags: science space research tech

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