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On the Cover

September-October 1999 Volume 87, Number 5

The Niagara Escarpment is a rocky bluff that runs for some 800 kilometers from Lake Huron in Canada, through southern Ontario and into the U.S. near Niagara Falls. Along the cliff face grow many rare plants and small trees. In "Cliffs as Natural Refuges," Douglas W. Larson, Uta Matthes and Peter E. Kelly, botanists from the University of Guelph, describe their investigation of this unique set of vegetation and recount their serendipitous discovery that many of the cedars growing on these cliffs are extraordinarily old. ...


FEATURE ARTICLES

Stingless-Bee Communication *

James Nieh

Searching for a proto-dance language reveals possible stages in the evolution of methods by which experienced foragers lead others to food


Ancient DNA *

George Poinar, Jr.

The tools of molecular biology can be used to peer into an organism's genetic future--or its distant past


Conformal Mappings *

Steven Krantz

Imaginary numbers are not figments, complex numbers are not difficult, but with such "imaginative mathematics," one can map irregular surfaces precisely


Deconstructing the Milky Way Galaxy *

Henry Freudenreich

Astronomers know more about distant galaxies than they do about our own Milky Way


Cliffs as Natural Refuges

Douglas W. Larson, Uta Matthes, Peter Kelly

Rocky precipices around the world provide a surprisingly sheltered environment for plants and animals


* access restricted to members and subscribers


SCIENTISTS’ BOOKSHELF

Genes and Species

Tim Tokaryk

A review of Sudden Origins: Fossils, Genes, and the Emergence of Species, by Jeffrey H. Schwartz.

See all book reviews for this issue.


DEPARTMENTS

COMPUTING SCIENCE

Computational Creationism

Brian Hayes

Is our universe reducible to clockwork, or are parts of it uncomputable?

MACROSCOPE

Chemist in the Courtroom

Robert D. Athey

Tales from the witness box

MARGINALIA

The American Kepler

J. Donald Fernie

Daniel Kirkwood's contributions to solar-system science

ENGINEERING

Daubert and Kumho *

Henry Petroski

Should courts distinguish between science and engineering?

SCIENCE OBSERVER

A Monument to Modesty

David Schneider

An effort to restore the grave of Alfred Russel Wallace

Going Cruciverbalistic

William Cannon

Exploits of a computer crossword solver

FROM THE PRESIDENT


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