With better knowledge of turbulence we can improve the efficiency of engines, reduce the drag on automobiles, regulate the flow of blood in the heart and design better golf balls. Photograph: iStock
A turbulent way to win $1 million

The chaotic flow of water cascading down a mountainside is known as turbulence. It is complex, irregular and unpredictable, but we should count our bl(...)

A doughnut: the number of holes determines the topological character of a surface. Photograph: Thinkstock

Topology is the mathematics of shapes. Geometers consider lengths, angles and other details. Topologists are more interested in overall, global asp(...)