Vaccine Supply Chains, Fish Robots, and Coronavirus Mutations: Lux Recommends #262

By Sam Arbesman, PhD

Welcome to Lux Recommends #262, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).

AIs that read sentences are now catching coronavirus mutations: “NLP algorithms designed for words and sentences can also be used to interpret genetic changes in viruses — speeding up lab work to spot new variants.” — Deena

Exploring the Supply Chain of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccinesZavain

‘If the aliens lay eggs, how does that affect architecture?’: sci-fi writers on how they build their worlds: “Authors including Nnedi Okorafor, Kim Stanley Robinson and Alastair Reynolds reveal what does, and doesn’t, go into creating their worlds” — Sam

Electric Eels Hunt in Packs, Shocking Prey and Scientists: “The behavior, used by wolves and orcas to run down fast prey, is rarely seen in fish.” — Adam K

Adorable Fish Bots Get Schooled in How to Swarm: “Meet Bluebot, a friendly swimming robot with big camera eyes. Put a few in a tank together and they’ll collaborate to complete surprisingly complex tasks.” — Lux intern Cameron McCord

Pig Painting May Be World’s Oldest Cave Art Yet, Archaeologists Say: “The depiction of the animal on an Indonesian island is at least 45,500 years old, the researchers say.” — Adam K

Landmark Study Identifies The Neurons Especially Vulnerable to Alzheimer’s Disease Adam G

Before ‘I Have a Dream,’ Martin Luther King Almost Died. This Man Saved Him: “The untold story of the patrolman who took charge when the civil rights leader was stabbed in Harlem.” — Nicky Noto, friend of Lux

An algorithmic approach to reducing unexplained pain disparities in underserved populationsDeena

Missionaries by Phil Klay: “A group of Colombian soldiers prepares to raid a drug lord’s safe house on the Venezuelan border. They’re watching him with an American-made drone, about to strike using military tactics taught to them by U.S. soldiers who honed their skills to lethal perfection in Iraq. In Missionaries, Phil Klay examines the globalization of violence through the interlocking stories of four characters and the conflicts that define their lives.” — T2

A Perfect Planet: “The story of Earth’s power and fragility” — Adam K

Lupin: “Inspired by the adventures of Arsène Lupin, gentleman thief Assane Diop sets out to avenge his father for an injustice inflicted by a wealthy family.” — Adam K

Parrot singing Led ZeppelinAdam K

1969 Grateful Dead concert— friend of Lux Eric Lichtenstein

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