If Our Neurons Were Better, We Might Not Bother With Love

Neuroscientist David Linden says the human need for love is actually the indirect result of our inefficient neurons.

If Our Neurons Were Better, We Might Not Bother With Love

According to neuroscientist David Linden, the neurons in our brains are inefficient. Like really inefficient. These ancient cells he disses as "jellyfish-like or coral-like" are “unreliable, they leak signals to their neighbors and they're slow.” They’re so lousy at what they do that we need lots and lots of them to be at all intelligent, hence our need for big brains. And because it takes about 20 years for a newborn’s 400 cc brain to grow into an 1,200 cc brain, we need mothering for longer than other animals. And because being a single mom in nature is a tough gig, we need…

On the other hand, think of the money he saves on valentines.

U.S. Navy controls inventions that claim to change "fabric of reality"

Inventions with revolutionary potential made by a mysterious aerospace engineer for the U.S. Navy come to light.

U.S. Navy ships

Credit: Getty Images
Surprising Science
  • U.S. Navy holds patents for enigmatic inventions by aerospace engineer Dr. Salvatore Pais.
  • Pais came up with technology that can "engineer" reality, devising an ultrafast craft, a fusion reactor, and more.
  • While mostly theoretical at this point, the inventions could transform energy, space, and military sectors.
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Are we in an AI summer or AI winter?

Neither. We are entering an AI autumn.

Credit: Jesse Chan via Unsplash
  • The history of AI shows boom periods (AI summers) followed by busts (AI winters).
  • The cyclical nature of AI funding is due to hype and promises not fulfilling expectations.
  • This time, we might enter something resembling an AI autumn rather than an AI winter, but fundamental questions remain if true AI is even possible.
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How WallStreetBets “hype” spreads among investors like a virus

A new study explores how investors' behavior is affected by participating in online communities, like Reddit's WallStreetBets.

WallStreetBets reddit page

Rafael Henrique via Adobe Stock
Mind & Brain
  • The study found evidence that "hype" over assets is psychologically contagious among investors in online communities.
  • This hype is self-perpetuating: A small group of investors hypes an asset, bringing in new investors, until growth becomes unsteady and a price crash ensues.
  • The researchers suggested that these new kinds of self-organized, social media-driven investment behaviors are unlikely to disappear anytime soon.
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Strange Maps

The ‘Lost Forty’: how a mapping error preserved an old-growth forest

A 19th-century surveying mistake kept lumberjacks away from what is now Minnesota's largest patch of old-growth trees.