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Telomere shortening may be early marker of cancer activity

July 16, 2003

Telomere shortening may be one of the earliest and most prevalent changes on a cell’s path to cancer, according to two studies presented at the 94th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR).

As cells divide and age, telomere DNA is lost and telomeres get shorter and shorter. The new study suggests that telomere dysfunction from the shortening may play a causal role in human intraepithelial… read more

UCLA Physicists Create Single Molecule Nanoscale Sensor

July 15, 2003

Physicists have created a first-of-its-kind nanoscale sensor, using a single molecule more than 1,000 times smaller than the thickness of a human hair to recognize the presence of a specific short sequence in a mixture of DNA or RNA molecules that could help with early diagnosis of genetic diseases, and have numerous other applications for medicine, biotechnology and other fields.

Weird Web Data Foxes Experts

July 15, 2003

Strange packets of data found on the Internet are worrying net security experts. Some believe the packets are part of a new scanning tool that maps networks and reports vulnerabilities that it finds. Efforts to track down the source of the large data packets have proved largely fruitless.

Early Voices: The Leap to Language

July 15, 2003

Biologists and linguists have long inhabited different worlds, with linguists taking little interest in evolution, the guiding theory of all biology. But the faculty for language, along with the evidence of how it evolved, is written somewhere in the now decoded human genome, waiting for biologists and linguists to identify the genetic program that generates words and syntax.

Teaching Computers to Work in Unison

July 15, 2003

This month, grid computing moved further toward the commercial mainstream when the Globus Project released new software tools that blend the grid standards with a programming technology called Web services, developed mainly in corporate labs, for automated computer-to-computer communications.

Enthusiasm for grid computing is also broadening among scientists. A report this year by a National Science Foundation panel, “Revolutionizing Science and Engineering Through Cyberinfrastructure,” called for new financing of… read more

Accelerating-change conference announced

July 14, 2003

The Accelerating Change Conference (ACC2003): Exploring the Future of Accelerating Change, will be held at Stanford University, September 12-14, 2003.

ACC2003 speakers include Ray Kurzweil (via Teleportec’s 3D Telepresence Lectern); venture capitalist Steve Jurvetson of Draper Fisher Jurvetson; K. Eric Drexler, Founder and Chairman of Foresight Institute; Greg Papadopoulos, CTO of Sun Microsystems; Tim O’Reilly, CEO of O’Reilly & Associates; Howard Bloom, author of Global Brain; and… read more

Intel keeping options open at 32-nm node

July 14, 2003

Despite its decision to pass on 157-nm lithography at the 45-nm node, Intel Corp. is “keeping all of its options open” for the 32-nm node, which moves into volume production toward the end of this decade.

Gladiator-style ‘wars’ select out weak programs

July 14, 2003

Computer scientists have found the ultimate way to debug their programs –let them compete against other programs in a gladiator-style tournament.

Dubbed Grid Wars II, the contest held at the ClusterWorld conference in San Jose, California, last month was like a software version of television’s Robot Wars and Battle Bots. In each battle, programs fought to gain control of processing power in a huge parallel computer.

‘Augmented reality’ speeding assembly and service tasks

July 14, 2003

Shorter development times and faster repairs are making “augmented reality,” a system for displaying electronic information in the form of images, a possibility.

“In one possible scenario, a technician with data goggles bends over the engine block of a luxury car and removes the covering. He is receiving instructions through an ear piece telling him what to do next while his data goggles mark the screws and bolts on… read more

Construction bugs find tiny work

July 11, 2003

“Biorobotic” bugs could help to construct nanoscale microscopic electrical circuits or other devices, using severed bacterial arms to lift and move objects, according to researchers speaking at the American Society of Microbiology’s Conference on Bio-, Micro- and Nanosystems.

Spin Me Right Round

July 11, 2003
A molecular motor moves its rotors in one direction because of hydrogen-bonding stations specific to its rotor rings, while sitting in molecules of dichloromethane.

Tiny rotary motors made of spinning molecules hold the promise of driving microscopic devices of the future. But so far, scientists have had a difficult time controlling which direction tiny artificial cogs spin. New interlocking rings designed by a team of researchers may solve that problem, bringing the vision of clockwork machinery on a molecular scale one step closer to reality.

UV laser bursts could easily make the rings… read more

Red-hot growth seen in wireless Internet hotspots

July 11, 2003

The number of worldwide “hotspots” for high-speed wireless Internet is expected to grow to at least 160,000 in 2007 from 28,000 this year, according to market research firm
Allied Business Intelligence.

Visionaries see flexible computers using less power

July 11, 2003

Computers will be more flexible, intelligent and require less power by the end of the decade, according to engineering groups meeting in Munich.

Machines that Reproduce May be Reality

July 11, 2003

Researchers have created a primordial soup that works like a digital DNA factory, where T-shaped “codons” swim in a computer-generated virtual liquid forming single, double, and even triple strands.

Like DNA, these digital particles “can be assembled into patterns that encode” information, claims robotics scientist Peter Turney. Given sufficient time, a soup of separated individual particles will “spontaneously form self-replicating patterns.”

A Garden of Robotic Delights

July 11, 2003

“The flowers in Cynthia Breazeal’s garden are like no blossoms you’ve ever seen. Fashioned of metal and silicon and embedded with electronic sensors, they are actually robots that react to light and body heat by bobbing, swaying, spinning and changing color….”

The Cyberflora Installation is now showing at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York City, through January 2004.

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