Audio Article: Babies can tell who has close relationships based on one clue: saliva
MIT neuroscientists have identified a specific signal that young children and even babies can use to determine whether two people have a strong relationship and a mutual obligation to help each other: whether those two people kiss, share food, or have other interactions that involve sharing saliva.
Audio Article: Deploying machine learning to improve mental health
A machine-learning expert from MIT and a psychology researcher/clinician from Massachusetts General Hospital have teamed up to develop tools for mental health care delivery. They hope their algorithms will eventually equip physicians and patients with useful information about individual disease trajectory and effective treatment.
Audio Article: Reducing food waste to increase access to affordable foods
Spoiler Alert, a company founded by two MIT alumni, is helping companies bridge the gap between food waste and food insecurity with a platform connecting major food and beverage brands with discount grocers, retailers, and nonprofits.
Audio Article: Scientists build new atlas of ocean’s oxygen-starved waters
A team of MIT scientists have generated a detailed, three-dimensional "atlas" of the largest oxygen-deficient zones (ODZ) in the tropical Pacific. And though these ODZs make up less than 1 percent of the ocean’s total volume, they are a significant source of nitrous oxide, a potent greenhouse gas.
Audio Article: Sensor based on quantum physics could detect SARS-CoV-2 virus
A novel approach to testing for the presence of the virus that causes Covid-19 may lead to tests that are faster, less expensive, and potentially less prone to erroneous results than existing detection methods.
Audio Article: Timber or steel?
Researchers at MIT have done a detailed analysis and created a set of computational tools to enable architects and engineers to design truss structures in a way that can minimize their embodied carbon while maintaining all needed properties for a given building application.
Audio Article: Giving robots social skills
MIT researchers have now incorporated certain social interactions into a framework for robotics, enabling machines to understand what it means to help or hinder one another, and to learn to perform these social behaviors on their own.
Audio Article: Dragging your feet? Lack of sleep affects your walk, new study finds
Good sleep can be hard to come by. But a new study by researchers at MIT and the University of São Paulo in Brazil finds that if you can make up for lost sleep, even for just a few weekend hours, the extra zzz’s could help reduce fatigue-induced clumsiness, at least in how you walk.
Audio Article: How marsh grass protects shorelines
As climate change brings greater threats to coastal ecosystems, new research can help planners leverage the wave-damping benefits of marsh plants.
Audio Article: Toward a smarter electronic health record
Researchers at MIT and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center are combining machine learning and human-computer interaction to create a better electronic health record (EHR). They developed MedKnowts, a system that unifies the processes of looking up medical records and documenting patient information into a single, interactive interface.