Making sense of science

Newsletter February 2017

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This month in science (February 2017)

This month in science just got an update. We've added two sections to keep you informed on the latest research from CNRS labs: direct links to the newest press releases, as well as information on recent international collaborations and agreements with our partners around the world. Also, if you're a European researcher, we just launched a website to help you apply for an ERC grant. Please visit The CNRS and the ERC. Enjoy your reading.

society digital article
The Challenges of Social Robotics
01.31.2017
Robotics Why do people become attached to robots, how do they display this attachment, and is reproducible? Véronique Aubergé, a leading social robotics specialist shares her insight on the complex relationship that humans develop with robots and how it may, in some cases, help restore social bonds.
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life article
Ants Have a Mighty Sense of Direction
01.19.2017
Biology A new study sheds light on how some ant species ingeniously combine vision and memory to find their way back from foraging expeditions—whether walking forward, backward or sideways.
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earth diaporama
Icebergs: the Hidden Face of Ice Giants
01.12.2017
Glaciology As a gigantic 5000 square kilometer iceberg threatens to break away from the Antarctic peninsula, CNRS news takes a closer look at these mountains of ice adrift in the sea. Where do they come from, why do they float and what are they made of?
Access the slideshow
Also this month
life article
society
How Real are False Memories?
01.16.2017
Neurology Our memory is malleable. So much so that we can even create false memories. Insight into these mechanisms could help us find new ways to understand certain pathological disorders. Neurobiologist Pascal Roullet, scientific adviser to a recently-aired documentary on the subject, explains.
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society article
digital
When Numbers Fail Justice
01.23.2017
Mathematics However objective they may seem, the figures presented in legal cases are sometimes based on a misleading or ill-conceived use of mathematics. The mathematician Leila Schneps explains the phenomenon.
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society article
The Truth about Pirates
01.04.2017
History Far from the romanticized image created since the 18th century by writers like Defoe and Stevenson, and perpetuated by Hollywood to this day, the actual history of the pirates and privateers, with whom they are too often confused, is much more complex. Gilbert Buti and Philippe Hrodej, historians...
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life article
Tracking the Panda Bat
01.26.2017
Animal Biology An expedition to the Kisangani region, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has yielded surprising findings about a supposedly very rare bat species, the pied butterfly bat, whose black fur with white markings is remarkably reminiscent of the panda's. The results of the study have just been...
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life billet
digital
The Myth of Human Enhancement
01.09.2017
Technology While transhumanism seeks to transcend the biological limitations of the human body, robotics researcher Nathanaël Jarrassé advocates a realistic perception of prostheses, which do not transform those who wear them into man-machines.
Read the opinion
society article
digital
Are Digital Devices Robbing our Memories?
01.02.2017
Neuroscience We are increasingly relying on digital devices to record information in our place. While such use of digital technologies might free up our brain to focus on other tasks, is there not a long-term risk of memory deterioration? We asked a specialist in the field.
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life diaporama
matter
Shots of Science
01.18.2017
Imaging Discover the 20 scientific images by Canadian researchers presented during the 2016 edition of the competition “La preuve par l’image” (Proof through Images). CNRS Le journal is a partner of Découvrir magazine, published by the Association francophone pour le savoir (Acfas), which has organized...
Access the slideshow
life article
Crazy Ants Make the Right Moves
01.10.2017
Biology A previously unidentified type of ant trail has recently come to light: the longhorn crazy ant’s unique scent marks that help crews of coworkers carry a bulky load across obstacle-strewn territory. A combined feat of collaboration, coordination… and chance.
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And the latest from the CNRS
Press Releases
13.01.2017
Crystallography : Electron diffraction locates hydrogen atoms
11.01.2017
Baboons produce vocalizations comparable to vowels
9.01.2017
Fast fine art : 19th century painting tricks revealed
2.01.2017
Nanohyperthermia softens tumors to improve treatment
International Cooperation
Institutional RussiaCelebrating the 20th anniversary of the CNRS-RFBR partnership in Moscow
Physics United-StatesCNRS, Aix-Marseille University and MIT to extend the activities of < MSE >² International Joint Unit
Engineering Sciences JapanA new French-Japanese laboratory for the behavior of materials under extreme conditions
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