Archives for May, 2012

Would you learn a language by taking a written text and changing letters here and there, or moving a few words around, and asking whether the meaning has changed? That may not be the most efficient way to learn French, but a Weizmann Institute scientist is betting that it will be a very useful way…

Not many Israelis make it all the way to the South Pole. (In fact, very few people go there, at all. Not only is it really, really cold, it is extremely difficult and expensive to transport people, gear and necessities to this remote and inhospitable corner of the earth.) So when we learned that Dr.…

New online articles this week highlight two forays into the world of synthetic biology. Each, in its own way, gives a different perspective on how sophisticated the field has become in the past few years, since smiley-face DNA was first introduced. Prof. Benjamin Geiger of the Weizmann Institute and Prof. Joachim Spatz of the Max…

You might not think of cell suicide as a sexy subject – but it is actually quite hot. Cells off themselves for any number of reasons: In embryonic development, cell suicide helps shape the growing organism. In adults, suicide is the last resort of a cell whose DNA is too damaged to repair, and its…

Sometime around junior high, this Weizmann science writer stumbled upon Mathematical Games, the late Martin Gardner’s monthly math puzzle at the back of my mom’s Scientific American, and I became a devotee. The best ones, of course, were those that required a little sideways thinking, and these yielded the pleasure of that “Aha” moment when…

No, the woman with the microphone is not crooning lounge songs to customers. That is Prof. Deborah Fass, and she is explaining the latest structural biology research in her lab. And this is Weizmann Institute president Prof. Daniel Zajfman in an official Science on Tap 2012 T shirt giving pub goers a talk on the…