October 28, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica
That sounds a bit conservative. “All of the ideas in the video are based on real technology,” he said. “Some of the capabilities, such as speech recognition, real time collaboration, and data visualization, already… read more
October 20, 2011 by Ray Kurzweil
Last week, Paul Allen and a colleague challenged the prediction that computers will soon exceed human intelligence. Now Ray Kurzweil, the leading proponent of the “Singularity,” offers a rebuttal. — Technology Review, Oct. 10, 2011.
October 7, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica
Ever wonder why uncle Louie seems to imagine stuff that didn’t happen, and calls you crazy? Well now’s there’s an explanation.
Half of you won’t like it, I warn you.
A new study of the brain by University of Cambridge scientists explains why some people can’t tell the difference between what they saw and what they imagined or were told about — such as whether they or another… read more
This just in: a new critique of the CERN OPERA finding of faster-than-light neutrinos. In “New Constraints on Neutrino Velocities,” Cohen and Glashow argue that the high-energy (17.5 GeV) superluminal muon neutrinos would actually lose energy rapidly (down to about 12.5GeV) on the 730km trip, long before arriving in Italy.
But that didn’t happen. Ergo, the neutrino weren’t really traveling faster than light, say Cohen… read more
September 30, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica
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
Pig is a trippy indy film that starts weird and gets weirder, with hints of Memento, Total Recall, Groundhog Day, The Truman Show, Vanilla Sky, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
Starring Rudolf Martin (Vlad Dracula in The Dark Prince: The True Story of Dracula and Ari Haswari in NCIS), the film engaged my mind right up to the reveal at the end, and pushed my paranoia up… read more
Remember the movie Brainstorm? Imagine watching someone’s dream, or tapping directly into the mind of a coma patient. University of California, Berkeley scientists claim they have finally achieved this classic futuristic movie “mind reading” trope. Sorta.
They’re using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and computational models to decode and reconstruct people’s dynamic visual experiences.
So far, the technology can only reconstruct movie clips you’ve… read more
September 21, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica
Their ultimate goal: create devices that can communicate directly with living things certain biological functions that involve protons — eventually even control them — a “first step toward ‘bionanoprotonics‘.”
Yes, there are implants (such as cochlear… read more
Those University of Utah engineers who built wireless networks that see through walls are now taking it a step further: detecting if surgery patients, adults with sleep apnea, and babies at risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) have stopped breathing.
This thing freaks me out a bit. Think what Homeland Security could do with it. The idea of being surrounded by tiny microwave ovens… read more
September 19, 2011 by Amara D. Angelica
Scientists, in theory, could one day create whole new lifeforms, going way beyond simple cloning, new research at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine suggests.
The scientists have now replaced the DNA in a yeast chromosome with computer-designed, synthetically produced DNA (structurally distinct from its original DNA), producing a healthy yeast cell.
So perhaps one day, a mad scientist could even create an entirely new… read more
I don’t write to our whole community often, but this week is special because it’s the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and many people don’t know that Meetup is a 9/11 baby.
Let me tell you the Meetup story. I was living a couple miles from the Twin Towers, and I was the kind of person who thought local community doesn’t matter much if we’ve got the… read more