Topic: College of Natural Sciences

Mass Extinctions Can Accelerate Evolution

Aug. 12, 2015
Virtual Biped Robot

A computer science team at UT Austin has found that robots evolve more quickly and efficiently after a virtual mass extinction modeled after real-life disasters such as the one that killed off the dinosaurs. Beyond its implications for artificial intelligence, the research supports the idea that mass extinctions actually speed up evolution by unleashing new creativity in adaptations.

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Six Tips for Staying Sharp

Aug. 11, 2015
illustration of six ways to stay sharp

This time of year, students are cramming information into the dark corners of their brains just long enough to survive final exams. Later in life, we may come up against similar challenges with learning and memory. Here are six research-based tips for staying mentally sharp.

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Corals Already Adapting to Global Warming, Scientists Say

June 25, 2015
A diver surveys temperature-tolerant corals in the Great Barrier Reef

Some coral populations already have genetic variants necessary to tolerate warm ocean waters, and humans can help to spread these genes, a team of scientists has found.

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Medication May Stop Drug and Alcohol Addiction

June 23, 2015
Hitoshi Morikawa

Researchers have successfully stopped cocaine and alcohol addiction in experiments using a drug already approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat high blood pressure. 

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2015 Summer Blockbusters: Meet the Science Truth Detector

June 18, 2015
film still from Terminator Genisys

With summer movie season in full swing, cinema-goers nationwide are leaving theaters with a big question in mind: "Could that really happen?" Our crack team of scientists rates the far-fetched notions in these films. Check out the Science Truth Detector.

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