Honey bees make sure our earth is full of flowers and food for us and other animals, they have complex social hierarchies, and now, it turns out, they can do math. In particular, scientists have recently found out that bees may understand the concept of zero, and that’s a big deal.
The number zero is actually pretty complicated — it takes human children a couple of years to fully understand it — and wasn’t even used as a number in mathematical calculations until around 5th century C.E., in India. Experts even herald the invention of zero as one of the greatest breakthroughs in mathematics and without it, humans wouldn’t have higher order math and modern computing. This reasoning in bees has, until now, only been discovered in animals with larger and more complex brains. Bee brains have fewer than 1 million neurons, which, compared to our 86 billion neurons, makes it surprising that bees are capable of understanding and reasoning a complex concept.
Researchers are hoping to use this new information on bees to make computers more efficient. Computers notoriously have a hard time with zero, but If bees can understand it with such simple brains, we could fix that.
Get 20% off Domain web hosting and domain names when you use coupon code SEEKER at checkout!