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ANALYSIS
Einstein was right (100 years ago)
29 May 2019 12:49
Javier Armentia

Now is the centenary of the eclipse that confirmed the theory of general relativity. "Every day, when we search the mobile phone map for a trajectory from our position, we are benefiting from Einstein's being right in making such a powerful and precise theory about what space and time are like," explains astrophysicist and disseminator Javier Armentia.

Tropical nights increase mortality rate in Barcelona
31 July 2018 9:34

A statistical analysis of the effects of very hot nights on the death rate in Barcelona’s environment reveals that, during these nocturnal periods, more deaths occur due to natural, respiratory and cardiovascular causes. Although this year would seem to break the trend, the number of ‘tropical’ nights has increased in the Catalan capital over the last few decades.

A genetic algorithm predicts the vertical growth of cities
23 May 2018 8:08

The increase of skyscrapers in a city resembles the development of some living systems. Spanish researchers have created an evolutionary genetic algorithm that, on the basis of the historical and economic data of an urban area, can predict what its skyline could look like in the coming years. The method has been applied successfully to the thriving Minato Ward, in Tokyo.

Referees add more extra time when the big teams are losing
6 July 2016 9:43

Football enthusiasts suspected it, but now statistics is confirming it. After analysing all the matches of the Spanish league “La Liga” from the 2014-2015 season, two experts in sports science have found that the greater the difference on the scoreboard, the less stoppage time is added to the end of the game. When the score is tighter, however, referees tend to add more stoppage time when the team in the higher division is losing.

How to build a system to recreate human behavior
27 October 2015 10:00

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid is investigating how to build a system that recreates human behavior. This technology could be applied to anticipate behavior in socioeconomic crises, create more human-like robots or develop avatars of artificial intelligence which are almost indistinguishable from those that represent people.

Ants’ movements hide mathematical patterns
11 May 2015 10:14

When ants go exploring in search of food they end up choosing collective routes that fit statistical distributions of probability. This has been demonstrated by a team of mathematicians after analysing the trails of a species of Argentine ant. Studies like this could be applied to coordinate the movement of micro-robots in cleaning contaminated areas for example.

Cities have a memory and interact with their neighbours
2 March 2015 8:27

Demographic changes in large cities depend on millions of individual decisions, but the population evolves depending on two factors: what ‘reminds’ them of their recent past and the existence of other urban areas around them. This is the proposal supported by a Spanish-Argentinean group of researchers through algorithms, which show how American cities have a 25-year-old memory and interact with others 200 km away while in the case of the Spain these values are 15 years and 80 km.

Cooperation is learned through practice, according to a mathematical model
28 May 2014 9:49

When we must choose between cooperating with others or betraying them, we are more likely to cooperate if they have acted like this with us or if we ourselves have behaved altruistically. We do so because learning reinforces what has gone well for us and not because we imitate successful people. These are the conclusions highlighted in a study conducted by the Carlos III University of Madrid based on the prisoner’s dilemma, a popular model for studying conflict.

Propagación y funcionamiento
Works using just 50,000 Twitter accounts
A system detects global trends in social networks two months in advance
28 April 2014 9:00

A new method of monitoring identifies what information will be relevant on social networks up to two months in advance. This may help predict social movements, consumer reactions or possible outbreaks of epidemics, according to a study in the Universidad Carlos III of Madrid (UC3M) is participating.

Nanoespumas
A mathematical equation that explains the behavior of nanofoams
21 March 2014 11:11

A research study, participated in by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M), has discovered that nanometric-size foam structures follow the same universal laws as does soap lather: small bubbles disappear in favor of the larger ones.