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Observations

Observations

Opinion, arguments & analyses from guest experts and from the editors of Scientific American

Plucked hairs can keep track of circadian rhythms

Our sleep patterns, eating habits, body temperature and hormone levels are driven by the rhythmic activity of body's circadian clock. Travel across time zones or shift work can knock those rhythms out of whack,  possibly leading to sleep problems,  bipolar disorder, metabolic syndrome and even cancer...

August 23, 2010 — Nicholette Zeliadt

Four winners of the 2010 Fields Medal announced

There is no such thing as the Nobel Prize in Mathematics, but fortunately the field of math dishes out its own top honors every four years, bestowing the prestigious Fields Medal on two to four researchers...

August 20, 2010 — John Matson

Ancient "terror bird" used rigid skull to drive its hooked beak into prey

The large, big-beaked "terror birds" (Phorusrhacidae) didn't need flight to snag a Miocene meal. Some of these extinct, flightless fowl likely used their massive rigid skulls and hooked beaks to chomp into prey with strong, successive pulls, concluded a research team after performing a biomechanical analysis of fossilized skulls...

August 18, 2010 — Katherine Harmon

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