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Existence, uplift, and science news

October 26, 2012 by David Brin

existence

After an incredible decade, in which the number of planets known beyond our solar system increased from zero to several thousand, astronomers have detected an Earth-sized world orbiting between the two major stars nearest to our system, Alpha Centauri A and Alpha Centauri B.

Much too hot to sustain life, it nevertheless will help in narrowing down the search space for others. (“News from Alpha Centauri.” Cool to say that!)

In a related… read more

The Providence Phoenix | Experimental band Yeasayer’s Odd Blood inspired by Kurzweil’s vision of human-machine intelligence

April 29, 2010

yeasayer odd blood

Source: The Providence Phoenix — February 9, 2010 | Jonathan Donaldson

Yeasayer have created a decadent, densely produced mess of a second album. Like other bands trying to do art rock in 2010, they confront us with the irony that their world of genre-melding futurism (a/k/a Brooklyn) can sound dated from the moment you get off the plane.

This aside, Odd Blood is a sprawling trip through Yeasayer’s uniquely rhythmic takes on rock and roll, art rock, R&B, electronic,… read more

Extend your life span without dieting!

October 18, 2012 by Amara D. Angelica

(Credit: McDonald's)

Woo hoo! 

UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have found that a starvation hormone markedly extends life span in mice without the need for calorie restriction.

Yes! I am sooo ready. I’ve waited years to have  fries!

Restricting food intake has been shown to extend lifespan in several different kinds of animals. But in the UT study, the researchers found transgenic mice that produced… read more

‘Extensive if not complete’ meltdown of three Fukushima reactors just 16 hours after the earthquake: coverup?

May 18, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica

ScienceInsider (published by Science magazine) reported Tuesday May 17 that “over the last week, a combination of robotic and human inspections has led to the conclusion that the fuel assemblies in units 1, 2, and 3 were completely exposed to the air for from over 6 hours to over 14 hours and that melting was extensive if not complete. Much of the fuel is now likely at the… read more

Eyez without a Facebook — live video lifelogging!

June 5, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica

Eyez

This just in from Aussie HIVE45 vidcaster Nathan Waters: “Someone is finally making *normal-looking* tech recording glasses! I have no affiliation with this product, but I would absolutely love if you added it to the news section to encourage more pledges for their Kickstarter funding. Here’s the link: Eyez by ZionEyez HD Video Recording Glasses for Facebook. “The issue so far has been… read more

Fed-funded research: magic mushrooms create ‘openness’

September 30, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica

Psilocybe cubensis (credit: Wikimedia Commons)

A single high dose of the hallucinogen psilocybin, the active ingredient in “magic mushrooms,” was enough to bring about a measureable and lasting personality change — “openness” — lasting at least a year in nearly 60 percent of the 51 participants in a new study, say Johns Hopkins researchers.

Well, doh, didn’t Timothy Leary discover that in the 60s? Um, OK, controlled experiments….… read more

Film Preview | Source Code movie combines mind-uploading, parallel universes, time travel, simulated reality

April 1, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica

source-code3

In the science-fiction movie Source Code (April 1 release), a secret program called “Source Code” sends a pilot back in time to cross over into another man’s identity and relive the last eight minutes of the passenger’s life on a train.

The mission: find a bomb that exploded on the train, killing everyone on board, to prevent another terrorist attack in six hours.

“People… read more

Film Review | Smart drug thriller is pretty smart

March 31, 2011 by R.U. Sirius

limitless-thumb


Limitless | Director: Neil Burger. Cast: Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro, Abbie Cornish

The moment I saw the film title — Limitless — I knew I was in for an oversimplified Hollywood-styled dramatization of transhuman themes, and set my expectations to a moderately amusing piece of crap.

Surprise! This is a tightly constructed and reasonably clever piece of entertainment with some… read more

Films inspired by renowned sci-fi author Philip K. Dick

March 30, 2011

(image: Philip K. Dick official website)

Philip K. Dick Films website | Since Ridley Scott turned Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? into the science fiction classic Blade Runner, eight of Philip K. Dick’s novels or short stories have made their way to the big screen.

To date, these films have generated over $1 billion in world-wide box office and ancillary revenue. This astounding success is the result of combining visionary stories with talent from… read more

First attack on a cyborg

July 17, 2012 by Amara D. Angelica

EyeTap (credit: Steve Mann)

UPDATE: McDonald’s provided this statement to KurzweilAI on July 18, 2012:

“We share the concern regarding Dr. Mann’s account of his July 1 visit to a McDonald’s in Paris.  McDonald’s France was made aware of Dr. Mann’s complaints on July 16, and immediately launched a thorough investigation. The McDonald’s France team has contacted Dr. Mann and is awaiting further information from him.

In addition, several staff members involvedread more

First Pass: What’s Wrong with the Grand Challenges for Engineering

October 11, 2010 by Daniel W. Rasmus

At the risk of committing more over-thinking of the Grand Challenges for Engineering, I want to take a first pass at discussing what I think is wrong with them in a very specific way, and honing the list into something more grand.

Here is the current list:

read more

Former president of India wants to beam energy from space

November 3, 2010 by Amara D. Angelica

SSP03

On Thursday November 4 at the National Press Club the National Space Society (NSS) will reveal a plan for solving the global energy crisis — along with the carbon crisis and America’s jobs crisis: the Kalam-NSS Energy Initiative (Dr. A.P.J. Kalam is the former President of India). This is a visionary, ambitious plan for harvesting solar power in space and beaming… read more

From DIY to DIWO: biohackers, synthetic biologists, and FBI to dialogue at Open Science Summit

July 26, 2010 by Amara D. Angelica

A new generation of biohackers is literally taking the future of biology into their own hands, and it’s raising some red flags with the government. The basic concern: how can we avoid proliferation of dangerous bioagents?

The situation will come to a head on Friday night July 30 at the Open Science Summit conference at UC Berkeley. Edward You, Supervisory Special Agent in the FBI’s… read more

Future food for cities

September 10, 2010 by Derek Jacoby

8 25

Within the next decade you will be able to grow all of your vegetables in a box barely larger than your refrigerator. This surprising statement is the result of a class project at Singularity University this summer. Here’s how we came to believe that this is true.

In the first week at Singularity University, we were introduced to a team project called “Food for Cities.” The project… read more

Future music invades the Grammys

February 14, 2012 by Amara D. Angelica

scary_monsters

For me, the best part of the Grammys Sunday night wasn’t on the telecast. It was the three pre-awards to the amazing dubstep artist Skrillex: Best Dance Recording and Best Dance/Electronica Album (both for “Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites”) and Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical (for “Cinema” remix track from Electroman).

“Bass riffs that sound like fire-breathing dragons, vocal melodies that closely resemble Central African Mbenga Mbuti Pygmy music, and… read more

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