Kiki Tsikala

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South African Government Taken to Court Over Rhino Horn Trade Moratorium

Changing Planet<p>By Adam Cruise<p>Two of South Africa’s largest private rhino breeders have taken the South African government to court in an effort to lift a moratorium that bans domestic trade in rhino horn.<p>In 2012, Johan Kruger, a Limpopo game farmer and rhino breeder, introduced litigation against …

Can you learn in your sleep?

Sleep learning used to be a pipe dream. Now neuroscientists say they have found ways to enhance your memory with your eyes closed, says David Robson.<p>Just before you climb under your duvet, you carefully prepare your room. You sprinkle a few drops of incense on your pillow, put on some headphones, …

The Brain

Can we ever know what cats think?

Our picks of the week from around the web, including the mysteries of our feline friends, Disneyland’s design magic and why your birthdays may soon be ruined thanks to tech.<p>The great forgetting<br>Kristin Ohlson | Aeon | 30 July 2014<br>Adults generally remember little or nothing from their first three or …

Behavior

How animals deal with infection

Other species evolved clever ways to protect themselves from catching illness long before we developed treatments. What do they do?<p>Humans are constantly at war with disease. We lob antibiotic missiles at bacteria and toss vaccine-shaped grenades at viruses. We drop bombs made of antibacterial soap …

Microbiology

Could your birthday predict your fate?

Your month of birth could influence your lifespan, mental health and even your eyesight. David Robson explains how.<p>With my birthday in the first week of October, my horoscope tells me that I should be fair-minded and balanced; courageous but indecisive. It may even describe my physical …

Immune System

The secret to acing exams

In tests that offer a choice of answers, you can exploit hidden patterns to get full marks if you know how, says William Poundstone.<p>Our fates in school and beyond are decided by pop quizzes, final exams, drivers’ exams, and professional exams. Many are true-or-false, or multiple-choice. If you get …

Mathematics

How to win at (almost) everything

In games, humans are hopelessly predictable. Spot this hidden behaviour and you can crush puny-minded opponents in everything from the lottery to Rock, Paper, Scissors.<p>Although we can never outwit the weather or natural disasters, there are ways to master those other seemingly unpredictable …

Sherlock Holmes

Is working at night bad for you?

How much does working in the small hours harm the mind and body? Claudia Hammond investigates the evidence.<p>In some jobs, working the night shift is unavoidable. There are hospitals to run, planes to fly and shops to keep open as we move towards a 24-hour society. With careful planning and a bit of …

Sleep

Resilience: How to train a tougher mind

Can you learn to be mentally tougher? Emma Young investigates the science of mindfulness and other techniques promising to foster resilience in the face of extreme stress.<p>“It was one of those perfect days. I think that’s what everyone remembers. And now whenever the day’s too perfect and the sky’s …

Mindfulness
Vocabulary

Should we engineer animals to be smart like humans?

What if it were possible to engineer animals to be as intelligent as us? As Tim Maughan discovers, we may have already started.<p>Human beings have long believed that it is our unique level of intelligence that separates us from other animals. Our ability for higher learning, creative thought, and – …

Singularity

How to save your memory

Are there ways to stop yourself losing your memory? The latest brain research suggests there’s hope for the forgetful…<p>Memory loss has to be one of our biggest fears. Names, words, facts and faces – nothing is spared.<p>As the latest video from the Head Squeeze team describes above, mental …

The Brain

How does the brain pay attention?

Our picks of the week from around the web, including the next big mystery of the brain and the upcoming exodus from Earth.<p><b>Brain</b> <br>Anatomy of attention <br>Alan Lightman | New Yorker | 1 October 2014<br>Brain scans tell us what the brain does – or least, where it reacts – when subjected to particular stimuli. …

Artificial Intelligence

Concentrate! How to tame a wandering mind

Procrastinate often? Caroline Williams does, so decided to find out if brain training could tackle her wandering mind. What she discovered could help everyone.<p>I am about to be zapped in the head with an electromagnet, once a second, for eight minutes. I fidget, trying to get comfortable in a huge …

The Brain

Brain: Why exercise boosts IQ

If you want your mind to be sharper, the evidence suggests you should visit the gym. But how can exercising your muscles boost your brain power?<p>We tend to assume that brains don’t go with brawn – but that assumption is turning out to be seriously flawed. As the latest video from the Head Squeeze …

The Brain

Could insects be the wonder food of the future?

Billions more hungry mouths are going to put more strain on the planet’s resources. Can eating creepy crawlies offer a solution? Emily Anthes reports.<p>At first my meal seems familiar, like countless other dishes I’ve eaten at Asian restaurants. A swirl of noodl­es slicked with oil and studded with …

Insects

How computers change the way we learn

Can technology improve the way we learn and think? Google’s head of research argues we're headed into a new era of education.<p>“This discovery of yours will create forgetfulness in the learners' souls, because they will not use their memories,” a concerned commentator once spoke of a new technology. …

Distance Learning

Dog-cloning: Yours for $100,000

Our picks of the week from around the web, including the truth about time and the cost of cloning your dog.<p><b>Evolution</b> <br>Tales of the hobbit <br>Ewen Callaway | Nature | 22 October 2014<br>Scientists recount the discovery of Homo floresiensis, “the most important hominin fossil in a generation”. The bones were …

Brain Imaging