Discovery

red robot-shaped viruses on the surface of a purple-blue cell, artist's rendering

Viruses may be ‘watching’ you – some microbes lie in wait until their hosts unknowingly give them the signal to start multiplying and kill them

There’s more to virus biology than meets the eye. Viruses that infect bacteria can listen for key cellular signals to help them make decisions. Even worse, they can use the cell’s own “ears” to do the listening for them. Continue Reading Viruses may be ‘watching’ you – some microbes lie in wait until their hosts unknowingly give them the signal to start multiplying and kill them

A person with cropped blond hair, wearing a grey t-shirt, stands with their arms crossed over their stomach, looking seriously. Democracy.

Americans think they know a lot about politics – and it’s bad for democracy that they’re so often wrong in their confidence

“In recent research, I studied how Americans’ perceptions of their own political knowledge shape their political attitudes,” says Ian Anson, associate professor of political science. “My results show that many Americans think they know much more about politics than they really do. Political overconfidence causes Americans to underestimate the political skill of their peers. And those who believe themselves to be political experts often dismiss the guidance of real experts.” Continue Reading Americans think they know a lot about politics – and it’s bad for democracy that they’re so often wrong in their confidence

A Civil-War-era jacket (blue) covered with embroidered words

Sparking History at The Peale

SPARK, an annual group exhibition of works by faculty, staff, alumni, and students at UMBC and Towson University returns for its fifth edition August 13-September 25. SPARK: New Light features work from 24 artists, and opens concurrently with the Founder’s Day Grand Reopening of The Peale, a celebration of the completion of extensive renovations to the historic facility. Continue Reading Sparking History at The Peale

Nancy Pelosi is deciding whether she will visit Taiwan

Why the big fuss over Nancy Pelosi’s possible visit to Taiwan?

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi hasn’t confirmed when – or even if – she is to visit Taiwan. Yet such is the sensitivity over the island’s status that reports of her possible trip have resulted in a warning by China of “serious consequences” and a suggestion by President Joe Biden that the visit was “not a good idea,” writes Meredith Oyen. Continue Reading Why the big fuss over Nancy Pelosi’s possible visit to Taiwan?

Political crowdfunding does more than raise money – it can also rile up opponents

The success of politicians in the U.S. largely depends on the amount of funding they receive from various sources. Traditionally, volunteers went door to door to solicit donations from individuals. Today, politicians use social media to encourage their supporters to donate and eventually vote for them. Many politicians have turned to this sort of political crowdfunding. Continue Reading Political crowdfunding does more than raise money – it can also rile up opponents

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