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News on Human Progress:
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Random networks, such as the Internet and global flight connections, have the potential for extreme behavior never seen before, suddenly gaining a central backbone of connections that make it simple to travel between any two points, researchers at the University of California at Santa Cruz and elsewhere have found.The addition of just one link triggers an instantaneous phase change and the network becomes fully connected. (Source: http://www.ne... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 17 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Purdue University) A researcher has developed probes that can help pinpoint the location of tumors and might one day be able to directly attack cancer cells. Joseph Irudayaraj, a Purdue University associate professor of agricultural and biological engineering, developed the nanoscale, multi-functional probes, which have antibodies on board, to search out and attach to cancer cells.
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 16 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(University of Helsinki) The Polymer Chemistry Research Group at the University of Helsinki, Finland, has succeeded in producing nano-sized metallic copper particles. The research result is interesting in that polymer-protected metal particles can also be used in various electronics applications.
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 16 2009 by Thoughtbot
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Caustic has announced a 3D ray tracing calculations chip to shade a ray traced scene at up to 20x the speed. (Source: http://www.bit-tech.net/news/hardware/2009/03/12/caustic-promises-real-time-ray-tracing/1)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 16 2009 by Thoughtbot
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Devices from electric cars to laptops could benefit from a new kind of battery-capacitor using 10 billion tiny capacitors, each just 50 nanometers across, per square centimeter. A single kilogram could deliver one megawatt of power and store 2500 joules. (Source: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16768-atomic-construction-yields-punchier-power-store.html?DCMP=OTC-rss&nsref=online-news)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 16 2009 by Thoughtbot
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A University of Rennes researcher has created an image of the eye with 95 per cent of the iris pigments identical to those in the original photograph. The process takes just a few minutes, so animators can make quick changes to their design. (Source: http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20126994.300-realistic-avatars-created-in-the-blink-of-an-eye.html?DCMP=OTC-rss&nsref=online-news)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 16 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Lehigh University) The next time an overnight snow begins to fall, take two bricks and place them side by side a few inches apart. In the morning, the bricks will be covered with snow and barely discernible. What you will see resembles a phenomenon that, when it occurs at the smallest of scales on an integrated optical circuit, could hasten the day when the Internet works at superfast speeds.
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 15 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Rice University) Researchers at Rice University have created a metamaterial that could light the way toward high-powered optics, ultra-efficient solar cells and even cloaking devices.
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Arizona State University) Two energy-industry companies are investing in research at Arizona State University's Advanced Photovoltaics Center. Researchers are exploring uses of nanomaterials and, specifically, "quantum dots," in technology to more effectively harness solar light for conversion into electrical power and to produce lighting devices that are more durable and energy-efficient that current products. In addition, this next generation o... More
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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A self-healing material able to repair its own surface scratches has been created by combining polyurethane with a modified molecule made up of chitosan (found in the shells of crustaceans like crabs and lobsters), University of Southern Mississippi researchers have found. (Source: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16748-crab-chemical-could-give-cars-a-selfhealing-shell.html?DCMP=OTC-rss&nsref=online-news)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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Functional MRI scans of the hippocampus (responsible for memory) have for the first time been used to detect a person's location in a virtual environment.The finding suggests that more detailed mind-reading, such as detecting as memories of a summer holiday, might eventually be possible, says Eleanor Maguire, a neuroscientist at University College London. (Source: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16751-brain-scan-reveals-memories-of-where-y... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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Chimps chose their routes using a mental map built around geometric coordinates, as opposed to a navigation style based on landmarks for well-travelled routes, primatologists at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology have found. (Source: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16744-chimps-use-geometry-to-navigate-the-jungle.html?DCMP=OTC-rss&nsref=online-news)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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23andMe, the gene-testing company backed by Google Inc., wants to collect DNA from the spit of 10,000 people with Parkinson's disease to hunt for common genes that may cause the illness or predict patients' response to drugs. (Source: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601124&sid=akLbmqiB1lSw&refer=home)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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The electromagnetic radiation that is generated every time a computer keyboard is tapped is easy to capture and decode, two separate research teams, from the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne and security consultancy Inverse Path, have found. (Source: http://www.itworld.com/security/64193/researchers-find-ways-sniff-keystrokes-thin-air)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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The U.S. Department of Homeland Security plans to study the possibility that human body odor could be used to tell when people are lying or to identify individuals in the same way that fingerprints can. (Source: http://www.upi.com/Emerging_Threats/2009/03/09/DHS_wants_to_use_human_body_odor_as_biometric_identifier_clue_to_deception/UPI-20121236627329/)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 13 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies) Early applications of synthetic biology may be adequately addressed by the existing regulatory framework for biotechnology, but further advances in this emerging field are likely to create much greater challenges for the US government, according to a new report authored by Michael Rodemeyer of the University of Virginia. Synthetic biology promises significant advances in areas such as biofuels, specialty che... More
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Eindhoven University of Technology) Researchers at Eindhoven University of Technology have for the first time made high-resolution images of the earliest stages of bone formation. They used the world's most advanced electron microscope to make three-dimensional images of the nano-particles at the heart of the process. The results provide improved understanding of bone, tooth and shell formation. For industrial applications, they promise better ma... More
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(Uppsala University) An international research team, involving Professor Rajeev Ahuja at Uppsala University and researchers in the USA, set out to understand the mechanism behind the catalytic effects of carbon nanomaterials. Experimental and theoretical efforts were combined in a synergistic approach and the results, published this week in the ASAP section of the journal Nano Letters, will fasten efforts to develop new catalysts.
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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Cells coated with sticky bits of DNA can self-assemble into functional three-dimensional microstructures. This bottom-up approach to tissue engineering, developed by scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley, provides a new solution to one of field's biggest problems: the creation of multicellular tissues with defined structures. (Source: http://www.technologyreview.com/biomedicine/22274/)
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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The new Taser XREP is an electrically charged dart that can be fired from up to 20 meters away with a 12-gauge shotgun. Upon impact, its barbed electrodes penetrate a victim's skin, discharging a 20-second burst of electricity to "distract, disorient and entice the subject to grab the projectile," which routes the shock through the hand, making it difficult to let go and spreading the pain further. U.S. police departments and the US military expec... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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The appearance of an "alien" organism seems imminent -- we may find one that arose naturally, or engineer one in the lab. Either way, it's a momentous step.Alternative life forms could supply biotechnologists with fresh molecules and new functions that they could apply to practical problems. A synthetic, made-to-order living system might even serve as a self-maintaining, self-improving, adaptable assembly line for producing everything from pharmac... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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MIT scientists have designed an experimental battery that charges about 100 times as fast as normal lithium ion batteries.It contains a cathode made up of 50-nanometer-wide nanoballs of lithium iron phosphate. If cellphone batteries can be made using the material, they could charge in 10 seconds; bigger batteries for plug-in hybrid electric cars could charge in just 5 minutes, vs. 8 for existing batteries. (Source: http://www.newscientist.com/... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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By comparing brain maps of identical twins (same genes) with fraternal twins (which share about half their genes), UCLA scientists calculated that myelin integrity (related to the speed of nerve impulses) is genetically determined in many brain areas important for intelligence.Identifying the genes that promote high-integrity myelin could lead to ways to enhance the genes' activity or artificially add the proteins they code for. This may in turn p... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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Google plans to announce a new service called Google Voice today that assigns users a phone number that consolidates voice mails and text messages from their various phone numbers and stores them in a single location that can be accessed remotely. Google Voice will also let users make free phone calls over the Internet, and it provides transcription of voice mail to machine-written messages, which can be sent to an e-mail account or a phone. A con... More
KurzweilAI.net news made popular on March 12 2009 by Thoughtbot
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(University of Miami) Researchers at the University of Miami and at the Universities of Tokyo and Tohoku, Japan, have been able to prove the existence of a "spin battery," a battery that is "charged" by applying a large magnetic field to nano-magnets in a device called a magnetic tunnel junction. The electrical current made in this process is called a spin polarized current and finds use in a new technology called "spintronics."
Eurekalert.org news made popular on March 11 2009 by Thoughtbot
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