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Plancks Law is a well-established physical law describes the transfer of heat between two objects.

Some physicists have predicted that the law should break down when the objects are very close together but scientists had never been able to confirm, or measure, this breakdown in practice.

MIT researchers say they have now done it but that the heat transfer can be 1,000 times greater than the law predicts.  The new findings could lead to better design of recording heads of the hard disks used for computer data storage,and new kinds of devices for harvesting energy from heat that would otherwise be wasted. 
A University of Exeter research team recently tested squirrels' ability to learn to choose between two pots of food after watching another squirrel remove a nut from one of the pots.

One group was rewarded for choosing the same pot as the previous squirrel, the second group was rewarded for targeting the other pot. Those that were rewarded for choosing food from the other pot learned more quickly than those that were rewarded for choosing the same pot. This suggests that grey squirrels learn more quickly to recognize the absence of food.
Future biology may rely more heavily on ancient math - namely algebra - according to researchers at Sweet Briar College and the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute (VBI) at Virginia Tech.

Future generations of biologists will routinely use mathematical and computational approaches to develop and frame hypotheses, design experiments, and analyze results. Sound mathematical models are essential for this purpose and are currently used in the field of systems biology to understand complex biological networks.
If you're an ordinary, law-abiding citizen in the UK, you can't own a gun.  So who owns them?  Criminals, of course, making crimes easier to commit.   But it isn't just organized crime and the assumption that gangs are most often at the root of gun crime in the UK is overstated, according to a study published today in Criminology and Criminal Justice.  In their paper, professor Simon Hallsworth and Dr Daniel Silverstone suggest that while gangs certainly exist, they are not involved in most illegal shootings.

In one of the largest studies examined, the Home Office conducted 80 structured interviews with young people involved with weapons, visiting UK cities with high levels of gun crime and penal establishments.
Is organic food better for you than conventional food?   It's the second most asked question we get here about food, the first being 'What is the difference between organic and inorganic food?  (Also Lee Silver's What is the meaning of "organic" (and inorganic) food?
A new study in Nature offers an explanation for the origin of dwarf spheroidal galaxies, one of the current puzzles in our understanding of galaxy formation.

Dwarf spheroidal galaxies are small and very faint, containing few stars relative to their total mass. They appear to be made mostly of dark matter - a mysterious substance detectable only by its gravitational influence, which outweighs normal matter by a factor of five to one in the universe as a whole.