May-Britt Moser charts the maps made by brains. In 2014, the neuroscientist won a joint Nobel Prize for her work on the 2005 discovery of grid cells, a population of neurons that enables us to understand precisely where we are in space. Based at the Centre for Neural Computation at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, she recalls the first time she saw the pattern the cells produce: "I thought, no, this isn't possible. This isn't biology – it's crazy!
For centuries, people have marvelled at the brown-flecked shell of a murre’s egg, which can range in color from a creamy white to a vibrant turqoise. But murre eggs have also fascinated people for another reason: their unusually angular tip, which is one of the pointiest in the avian kingdom. In the 1800s, naturalists posited that this shape allowed the eggs to spin like a top in the wind, preventing them from rolling off the narrow ledges where murres nest. That was later disproved.
The future of the immaculate British lawn is under threat, claims a new report from the Royal Horticultural Society: rising temperatures will deliver a triple-threat of dryness, weeds and pests that gardeners will have to navigate if they want to maintain their manicured emerald rectangles. Some reports have even suggested we do away with lawns altogether and just substitute them with fake green turf (gasp!) to avoid the inevitable hassle. But will it be worth it?