What's coming next? Scientists identify how the brain predicts speech

An international collaboration of neuroscientists has shed light on how the brain helps us to predict what is coming next in speech. According to Science daily

In the study, scientists, report that they have discovered mechanisms in the brain's auditory cortex involved in processing speech and predicting upcoming words, which is essentially unchanged throughout evolution. Their research reveals how individual neurons coordinate with neural populations to anticipate events, a process that is impaired in many neurological and psychiatric disorders such as dyslexia, schizophrenia and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Physics of throwing analysed by scientists

Scientists have calculated the optimal strategy for throwing something accurately - whether it's a dart or a crumpled-up piece of paper. According to BBC

Researchers say the slow-is-more-accurate rule generally applies.

In a series of calculations, they looked at the physics behind releasing a projectile with the human arm.

Their equations suggest a slow underarm throw is the best strategy for getting a piece of paper into a nearby bin.

Lead researcher Madhusudhan Venkadesan, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and materials science, said faster throws tend to be less accurate.

Most habitable planets will be dominated by WATER that spans over 90% of their surface

When it comes to exploring exoplanets, astronauts may be wise to make sure their spacesuits are waterproof. According to Daily mail

A new study has predicted that most habitable planets will be dominated by oceans that span over 90 per cent of their surface.

Researchers believe that the findings could provide clues to why we evolved on Earth, and not on one of the billions of other habitable worlds.

Early dinosaur relative walked like a croc

One of the earliest relatives of dinosaurs had some features we associate today with crocodiles and alligators, a study suggests. According to BBC

Many palaeontologists have wondered what the earliest dinosaur relatives looked like, as the fossil record in this time period is sparse.

Some assumed they walked on two legs, looking a bit like miniature dinosaurs.

Palaeontologist reconstructs feathered dinosaurs in the flesh

Until now it has been hard to get an accurate idea of the shape of a dinosaur from its fossilised remains, as only their bones are usually preserved. Using a new technique, Dr Michael Pittman and his collaborators reconstructed the first highly detailed body outline of a feathered dinosaur based on high-definition images of its preserved soft tissues. According to Science daily.

Laser-stimulated fluorescence (LSF) is a revolutionary new technique using high power lasers that makes unseen soft tissues preserved alongside the bones, literally "glow in the dark" by fluorescence. The technique developed by collaborator Tom Kaye, scans the fossils with a violet laser in a dark room. The laser "excites" the few skin atoms left in the matrix making them glow, to reveal what the shape of the dinosaur actually looked like. "For the last 20 years we have been amazed by the wondrous feathered dinosaurs of Northeastern China. However, we never thought they would preserve soft tissues so extensively," said lead author and palaeontologist Dr Michael Pittman.

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