Nature (Vol. 436, No. 7051, 4 August 2005)

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94, 10637–10646 (1989). 5. Bina, C. R. & Helffrich, G. R. J. Geophys. Res. 99, 15853–15860 (1994). 6. Green, H. , Young, T. , Walker, D. & Scholz, C. H. Nature 348, 720–722 (1990). 7. Kirby, S. , Durham, W. B. & Stern, L. A. Science 252, 216–225 (1991). 8. Collier, J. & Helffrich, G. Geophys. Res. Lett. 24, 1535–1538 (1996). 9. Vidale, J. E. & Benz, H. M. Nature 356, 678–683 (1992). CELL BIOLOGY Without a raft Ben Nichols The spatial organization of signalling proteins in the cell membrane is often ascribed to lipid-based ‘rafts’.

This second formula is easy to interpret: the extra information required is equal to the uncertainty in the total message, consisting of both X and Y, minus the uncertainty owing to Y alone, which should be subtracted, as Y is already known. Among its many intuitive features, the conditional-entropy function is always greater than or equal to zero. That’s because there is potentially more to be ignorant of in two messages X and Y together than in Y alone, so the inequality H(X,Y)ኑH(Y) holds. For example, X and Y could represent future issues of the Financial Times and The Wall Street Journal, respectively: readers who take the time to follow both newspapers will be intimately familiar with the practical meaning of the inequality!

1a). Furthermore, as one looks outwards from various locations on the continent, the change in bird-community composition is asymmetric and mimics the underlying changes in habitat (Fig. 1b). Graves and Rahbek conclude that there is a strong causal influence of birds’ habitat requirements on their spatial distribution across South America. They argue that this influence contradicts neutral theory, which ignores species differences in habitat requirements. It is worth pointing out that the first of Graves and Rahbek’s results, a correlation between habitat extent and species’ spatial extents, could arise from a source other than habitat influence, a source that is instead consistent with neutral theory.

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