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Recent News from Columbia

Research & Discovery

A sign warns of fire danger at a national park as a wildfire burns in the background.
Smoke from the Flats Fire in Pinyon Pines, CA, on June 13, 2021. Photo: Lisa Cox/USFS
Summer Forecast: Heat, Fire, and an Active Hurricane Season

Climate change may be loading the dice for a difficult summer, according to researchers at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Encoding information into the DNA of e-coli cells
An artist’s rendering of an E. coli cell. (Can Stock Photo / Kateryna_Kon)
Bacteria Employed as "Living Hard Drives"

Columbia scientists have found a way to encode digital information straight into the genomes of living E. coli bacteria cells, which, they say, preserves the data in a surprisingly stable, robust manner. 

Columbia graduate students Lin Xiong (left) and Yinan Dong image plasmon polaritons using a cryogenic microscope.
Columbia graduate students Lin Xiong (left) and Yinan Dong image plasmon polaritons using a cryogenic microscope. (Credit: Yinan Dong)
Physicists Show That a Quantum Particle Made of Light and Matter Can Be Dragged by a Current of Electrons

Like light streaming through moving water, a quantum particle can change speeds when immersed in an electrical current flowing through graphene, says a new study led by Dmitri Basov's lab at Columbia.

An AI learns to predict what comes next in a stream of video just as we learn to anticipate what another person is about to do. Video stills from The Cider House Rules and Mumford. (bottom)
An AI learns to predict what comes next in a stream of video just as we learn to anticipate what another person is about to do.
AI Learns to Predict Human Behavior from Videos

Columbia Engineering researchers develop a computer vision algorithm for predicting human interactions and body language in video, a capability that could have applications for assistive technology, autonomous vehicles, and collaborative robots.

Arts & Humanities

Ghost Forest, Maya Lin, Columbia University event
Ghost Forest by Maya Lin
Artist and Designer Maya Lin Presents Major New Works

Also known as an environmentalist, she discusses “Ghost Forest” and “What Is Missing,” which both address climate change.

POLITICS & SOCIAL JUSTICE

Alia Shawkat in Pride on FX
Politics and Pride Are Central to Building LGBTQ Community

Whether it's AIDS or COVID or rampant injustice, political necessity brings LGBTQ people “together in an expression of community.”

Binder folders, Knight First Amendment Institute
Long-Withheld Office of Legal Counsel Records Reveal Agency’s Postwar Influence

The Knight First Amendment Institute found that indexes of opinions from 1945 to 1958 highlight key role of office in issuing controlling interpretations of law inside executive branch.

Columbia Magazine Pentagon PapersThe Columbia Guide to the Pentagon Papers Case
The Columbia Guide to the Pentagon Papers Case

In 1971, the US government sued to stop the New York Times from publishing classified documents, sparking a momentous Supreme Court battle. Fifty years later, alumni and faculty tell us why this case matters more than ever.  

Olatunde Johnson, on Defending the Planet, Columbia Law School
Defending the Planet: Environmental Justice

In the sixth and final episode of Columbia Law School’s limited-series podcast, Professor Olatunde Johnson and environmental and community lawyer Ruth Santiago ’83 J.D., ’10 LL.M. discuss the nexus of civil rights and climate change.