What Can Brain Cells on a Microchip Tell Us About Intelligence?

Whether “intelligence” can be created within hardware is a fascinating question, and one that remains unanswered despite significant efforts. In contrast, biological intelligence from a neural source offers a “ground truth” of opportunity. As such, the question becomes not ‘if’ general intelligence can arise from something artificial, but ‘how’.

Tackling Invasive Species

How big is the problem of invasive species? In the words of Deakin University’s Professor Euan Ritchie, ‘the short answer is: it’s massive’. Invasive genes and species are one of the biggest environmental problems facing Australia and the number one cause of native species extinctions. They also cause immense economic and cultural damage; since the 1960s, Australia has variously spent and incurred losses amounting to $390 billion due to invasive species.

Protecting Your Health From Severe Hot Weather

Like a high-performance vehicle, the human body is very finely calibrated for peak efficiency. The brain regulates body temperature, keeping it within a very narrow range for optimum functioning. A balance must be struck between heat generating activities (exercise, metabolism, ingesting hot food and drink ), heat loss (sharing heat through closeness or touch, breathing, sweating, and other excretions) and the environment.

Climate Notes

Climate Notes was an emotive, interactive exhibition and performance work that explores how we feel about climate change through music, letter writing and film. Developed by the Royal Botanic Gardens with funding from the Inspiring Victoria program, the project commissioned six Australian composers from different cities to write works evoking feelings about climate change and responding to the letters.

You Can’t Bake the Same Cake Twice

You may wonder whether we can separate the cake of life’s three main ingredients: genes, environment, and developmental variation. This remains a goal of many researchers. But just as we can’t un-bake a cake to produce flour, eggs, and sugar, we can’t completely separate out the factors that make you an individual. Things are complicated because genes, environment and developmental variation interact.