Sustained bacterial outbreak in mosquitoes limits spread of life-threatening diseases

Medical practitioners, such as those at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, frequently utilize mathematical models when determining how to best control the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses. Diseases such as chikungunya, dengue fever, malaria, and Zika virus can be life-threatening, and no effective vaccine currently exists. While most mitigation strategies aim to eliminate popular…

The genius at Guinness and his statistical legacy

Statistics has Guinness to thank for the Student’s t-test. Credit: Flickr/Scott Thompson, CC BY This St Patrick’s Day, revellers around the world will crowd the streets seeking one of Ireland’s national drinks: a pint of Guinness. But besides this tasty stout, one of the most fundamental and commonly used tools of science also has its…

A model for autoignition in turbulent jets

The hydrodynamic structure of a free round turbulent jet of fuel (ethanol/water mixture) and oxidizer (air), injected into an ambient of supercritical water at rest (left) and at the instance of spontaneous autoignition of the hydrothermal flame (right). The images were taken in the high-pressure combustion laboratory at NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio.…

Want to predict March Madness? New method identifies key statistics, outperforms others in accuracy

University of Illinois researchers have developed a method using causal inference for predicting upsets in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament that outperforms many other techniques. In addition to improved accuracy, the method stands out because it relies on publicly available data, making it reproducible and more accessible for others to use. The paper reporting the…

Teachers, pedagogical skills, and the obstacle of intuition

When a task calls for intuitive knowledge, as in “subtracting means taking something away,” its complexity often goes unnoticed. However, when intuitions are not mobilized – having to grasp, for instance, that subtracting means “finding the difference” – the task is considered difficult, and seemingly requires the use of specific educational strategies. Researchers at the…