science + technology news

Venter to Bio World: Exa-Byte Me

November 13, 2002

Craig Venter, delivering the opening address yesterday at the BioITWorld conference here, said that computer power will be the limiting factor in crunching, storing, and manipulating the data necessary for linking the promise of genomics to insights into gene function, protein interaction, and personalized medicine. To underscore his point, he said the Celera computers that sequenced the human genome – the 1.5 teraflop, 120 terabyte machines that took up 6,000… read more

NASA, Japan Release Most Complete Topographic Map Of Earth

July 1, 2009

NASA and Japan have released a new digital topographic map of Earth that covers more of our planet than ever before, produced with detailed measurements from NASA’s Terra spacecraft.

National Academy of Engineering to unveil Grand Challenges

February 8, 2008

An 18-member National Academy of Engineering committee — chaired by former U.S. Secretary of Defense William J. Perry and including Ray Kurzweil, as well as Google founder Larry Page, human genome pioneer J. Craig Venter, Nobel Prize winner Mario Molina, former National Institutes of Health director Bernadine Healy, and other leading technological thinkers — plans to propose the 21st Century’s “Grand Challenges for Engineering.”

The year-long effort received worldwide… read more

Nanotubes refine computer memory

October 5, 2005

Nantero has succeeded in making circular wafers, 13 centimeters in diameter, that hold 10 gigabits of data and are ten times faster than flash memory.

Nantero calls its technology NRAM, nanotube-based, non-volatile random access memory.

The design involves suspending nanotube ribbons between points above a silicon chip, so that they form tiny bridges over electrodes lying below. When a charge is applied, the nanotube bridge curves… read more

Ford, Google team up to make smarter cars

May 12, 2011

Ford API

Ford is joining Google in using Google’s Prediction API to create cars that determine where you’re going by examining where you’ve been.

A computer in your car would create an encrypted record of your driving data — where, when, and what route — and tailor the car to your driving profile. Eventually, your car “remembers” where and how you drive. It would then optimize itself for the trip to… read more

Dead Air

November 25, 2002

Cell phones and the wireless industries of the future are snarled by a critical shortage of airwaves.

Solutions are on the way. Intel has discovered how to build entire radios in silicon chips. This and other new wireless technologies like cognitive radio, ultrawideband, software-defined radio and mesh networks could allow for spectrum sharing without interference, which the FCC is considering.

Caloric Restriction Slows Aging in Monkeys

July 10, 2009

In rhesus monkeys, caloric restriction begun in adulthood reduces risk of the most common age-related conditions–diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and brain atrophy–by a third, researchers at the National Primate Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison report.

The incidence of both cardiovascular disease and tumors was reduced by 50 percent in the diet group. And magnetic resonance imaging showed that caloric restriction preserved gray-matter volume in the brain as… read more

Fabric may make the first real power suit

February 14, 2008

Georgia Institute of Technology researchers have made a yarn out of nanofibres that produce a charge when rubbed against one another.

Materials woven from these yarns could be used for self-powering clothes, shoes or biological implants such as pacemakers.

‘Junk’ RNA May Have Played Role in Vertebrate Evolution

February 15, 2008

Dartmouth College and University of Bristol researchers report that microRNA transcribed from “junk DNA” could be responsible for the evolution of animals with backbones.

They found a surfeit of microRNA in the genomes of the earliest vertebrates, such as lampreys (jawless fish), compared with invertebrates like sea squirts.

Robots and TV to be big in 2006

October 21, 2005

Specialized robots, devices for DIY content creation and new TV displays are among the trends to watch in 2006.

New printing technology for depositing silver at room temperature may lead to electronics advances

July 2, 2015


Engineers at Oregon State University (OSU) have invented a way to use silver at room temperature for printed electronics, with broad applications in microelectronics, sensors, energy devices, low emissivity coatings and even transparent displays.

Silver offers advantages in electronic devices because of its conductive and other properties. But the process for using it has required high heat and organic stablizers, followed by post-heating treatments that are required… read more

Airships tested as telecom beacons

December 17, 2002

“Stratellites,” spherical airships at 19,000 meters in altitude, will be used as high-flying telecommunications platforms to supply two-way Internet access across the United States and into Mexico and Canada ihin 2004. They offer the advantages of satellites without the launch costs and transmission latency.

Econophysicist Predicts Date of Chinese Stock Market Collapse–Part II

August 23, 2009


Does the prediction that the Shanghai Composite stock market index would crash before July 27 (actually happened two days after that deadline) indicate a forecasting breakthrough — or did it cause it?

Study identifies new patterns of brain activation used in forming long-term memories

February 21, 2008

New York University and Weizmann Institute of Science researchers have identified patterns of brain activation linked to the formation of long-term memories in a simulated real-life experience, finding activity in new areas of the brain: the temporal pole, superior temporal gyrus, medial prefrontal cortex, and temporal parietal junction.

Previous studies had not simulated the real-world settings in which long-term memories are typically formed, and found only that medial temporal… read more

Biobutanol: Next generation of biofuels

May 24, 2011

Scientists at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) are researching ways to turn wood into sustainable biobutanol.

Biobutanol is one of a handful of fuels that can be produced from wood sugars; the specific fuel that is produced depends on what kind of organism is used to ferment the sugar.

Biobutanol offers several advantages over the ethanol that is commonly mixed… read more

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