Seven thousand years ago, societies across Eurasia began to show signs of lasting divisions between haves and have-nots. In new research published in the journal Antiquity, scientists chart the precipitous surge of prehistoric inequality and trace its economic origins back to the adoption of ox-drawn plows.
Why it is that only some crimes supercharge from city size is explained in a new paper published this week in Physical Review E. According to Complexity Postdoctoral Fellow Vicky Chuqiao Yang and her coauthors, the same underlying mechanism that boosts urban innovation and startup businesses can also explain why certain types of crimes thrive in a larger population.
Infectious disease outbreaks often emerge when and where we are least equipped to detect and control them. In a series of two lectures, SFI External Professor Lauren Ancel Meyers discusses how network-based mathematical models data accelerate the detection and containment of outbreaks.
Reckless Ideas will feature high on the agenda of the sixth Postdocs in Complexity Conference, the latest in a twice-yearly series held at SFI and generously funded by the James S. McDonnell Foundation (JSMF). The conference, to take place Aug. 27-30, brings together early-career complexity postdoctoral fellows in a wide range of disciplines from institutions around the world.
For over a century, anthropologists have attempted to describe human societies as “matrilineal” or “patrilineal” — emphasizing relatedness among women or men, respectively. A new paper by Laura Fortunato, an anthropologist at the University of Oxford and External Professor at the Santa Fe Institute, argues that it is time to confront the ambiguity at the heart of these terms.
SFI's free online course, Introduction to Dynamical Systems and Chaos with College of the Atlantic professor David Feldman, begins Oct. 1. Topics to be covered include: phase space, bifurcations, chaos, the butterfly effect, strange attractors, and pattern formation.
A new Entropy paper analyzes games with players who were subject to error, or who were “boundedly rational.”
Aug. 5-7, SFI hosts its second working group on cumulative cultural evolution, led by Vanessa Ferdinand, Rob Boyd, and Bill Thompson.
A new paper in Animal Behaviour lays out three concepts from complex systems science that could advance studies into animal social complexity.
Today’s quantum computers sustain temperatures approaching absolute zero and are designed to solve problems that would require millions of years for even the world’s best supercomputers. However, the rate of hardware development is seemingly outpacing the growth of algorithms that can leverage the phenomena of quantum mechanics. A July 30 through Aug. 2 working group aims to address this shortage of algorithms.
Laboratory populations that quietly amass 'cryptic' genetic variants are capable of surprising evolutionary leaps, according to a paper in the July 26 issue of Science. A better understanding of cryptic variation may improve directed evolution techniques for developing new biomolecules for medical and other applications.
Most game theory models don’t reflect the relentlessly random timing of the real world. In a new paper, Justin Grana, James Bono, and SFI Professor David Wolpert model what happens when players receive information or act at random times, which could make a big difference in decision-making.
SFI Science Board member Derek Smith has worked in academia, industry, and public health. He is using insights from his work at SFI to develop an evolution-inspired flu vaccine.
SFI External Professor Raissa D’Souza (UC Davis) has joined the journal Physical Review Research as Lead Editor.
External Professor Stephanie Forrest and co-authors received the 2019 Ten-Year Most Influential Paper award from the International Conference on Software Engineering for their 2009 paper "Automatically Finding Patches Using Genetic Programming."
Instead of the typical bell-shaped curve, the fossil record shows a fat-tailed distribution, with extreme, outlier, events occurring with higher-than-expected probability. Using the same mathematical tools that describe stock market crashes, SFI researchers explain the evolutionary dynamics behind this universal pattern in the fossil record and uncover "a new normal."
In his new book Life Finds a Way: What Evolution Teaches Us About Creativity, SFI External Professor Andreas Wagner compares the tools of biological evolution with those of human innovation to make sense of the creative process that is happening in our minds all the time.