Most Recently Added Most commentedBy Title | A-Z

New hologram technology created by nanoantennas on a ‘metasurface’

A potentially revolutionary new technology for advanced sensors, high-resolution displays, and information processing
November 19, 2013

Laser light shines through the metasurface from below, creating a hologram 10 microns above the structure. (Xingjie Ni, Birck Nanotechnology Center)

Researchers have created tiny holograms using a “metasurface” capable of the ultra-efficient control of light, representing a potential new technology for advanced sensors, high-resolution displays and information processing.

The metasurface, thousands of V-shaped nanoantennas formed into an ultrathin gold foil, could make possible “planar photonics” devices and optical switches small enough to be integrated into computer chips for information processing, sensing and telecommunications, said Alexander Kildishev, associate research professor… read more

A precise new quantitative brain-scan measurement method

Can quantify the volume of specific brain tissues, a critical measurement of the progression of brain diseases
November 19, 2013

The image is of the macromolecule tissue volume (MTV)  map in a  3D view within a human brain.

An interdisciplinary Stanford team has developed a new method for quantitatively (using numbers) measuring human brain tissue using MRI (which formerly provided mostly qualitative, such as “bright” or “dark,” information).

The team members measured the volume of large molecules (macromolecules) within each cubic millimeter of the brain. Their method may improve how doctors diagnose and treat neurological diseases such as multiple sclerosis.

“We’re moving from qualitative… read more

Engineered glowing worms detect neural effects of drugs

November 18, 2013

Neurons in the worms (marked by arrows) glow as the animals sense attractive odors. (Credit: Image courtesy of Worcester Polytechnic Institute)

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and The Rockefeller University in New York has developed a novel system to image brain activity in multiple awake and unconstrained worms.

The technology makes it possible to study the genetics and neural circuitry associated with animal behavior,  but it can also be used as a high-throughput screening tool for drug development targeting autism, anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and other… read more

A durable, low-cost water splitter made of silicon and nickel

New fuel cells can more efficiently generate electricity when the sun isn't shining or demand is high
November 18, 2013

his image shows two electrodes connected via an external voltage source splitting water into oxygen (O2) and hydrogen (H2). The illuminated silicon electrode (left) uses light energy to assist in the water-splitting process and is protected from the surrounding electrolyte by a 2-nm film of nickel. (Illustration: Guosong Hong, Stanford University)

Stanford researchers have developed an inexpensive, corrosion-free device that uses light to split water into oxygen and clean-burning hydrogen.

The goal is to supplement solar cells with hydrogen-powered fuel cells that can generate electricity when the sun isn’t shining or demand is high.

The novel device — a silicon semiconductor coated in an ultrathin layer of nickel — could help pave the way for large-scale production of… read more

New video series aims to popularize transhumanism; Kickstarter launched

November 18, 2013

BIOPS

The newly formed British Institute of Posthuman Studies (BIOPS), A UK think-tank that aims to popularize transhumanism, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise the £65,000 needed to produce a series of six in-depth, animated video investigations of transhumanist themes and ideas during 2014.

BIOPS has created Posthuman: An Introduction to Transhumanism (below), a series introduction focusing on superlongevity (Aubrey de Grey’s ideas), superintelligence (Ray Kurzweil’s),… read more

New Fox science fiction show Almost Human features androids

November 17, 2013

Almost human poster

Almost Human is a new Fox TV series set in 2048 when humans in the Los Angeles Police Department are paired up with lifelike androids. It features a detective with a bionic leg paired with an android capable of emotion.

The series premiered November 17, 2013 on Fox. Full episodes are also viewable here.

Executive-produced by J.J. Abrams (Fringe, Lost, and the Star Trek and Mission: Impossible franchises),… read more

Scientists create single-atom bit, smallest memory in the world

November 17, 2013

The scanning tunneling microscope makes single holmium atoms on a platinum surface visible. (Photo: KIT/T. Miyamachi)

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) researchers have taken a big step towards miniaturizing magnetic data memory down to a single-atom bit: they fixed a single atom on a surface so the magnetic spin remained stable for ten minutes.

“A single atom fixed to a substrate is [typically] so sensitive that its magnetic orientation is stable only for less than a microsecond,” said Wulf Wulfhekel of KIT.

A… read more

Better batteries through biology

Could provide two to three times greater energy density --- the amount of energy that can be stored for a given weight --- than today’s best lithium-ion batteries
November 15, 2013

(credit:

MIT researchers have found that adding genetically modified viruses to the production of nanowires, which can serve as one of a battery’s electrodes, could help solve some of the problems in creating lithium-air batteries.

These batteries hold the promise of drastically increasing power per battery weight, which could lead, for example, to electric cars with a much greater driving range. But bringing that promise to reality has… read more

First 3D-printed model of a neuron

November 15, 2013

The Yale Center for Engineering Innovation and Design has produced a model of a lone neuron (pictured) using its 3D printers. “We see a future in which 3D models of nerve cells will be an integral part of doing research and of teaching neurobiology,” said Gordon Shepherd, professor of neurobiology at the Yale School of Medicine.

Yale neuroscientist Gordon Shepherd has created the first 3D-printed neuron with help from the Yale Center for Engineering Innovation and Design (CEID).

“Brain microcircuits have a very complicated 3D architecture,” said Shepherd, a professor of neurobiology at the Yale School of Medicine and author of The Synaptic Organization of the Brain, a classic in the literature of neurobiology.

“The model will give us… read more

How a choice of social learning networks can make us smarter

November 15, 2013

Experiment 1 - GIMP

The secret to why some cultures thrive and others disappear may lie in our social networks* and our ability to imitate, rather than our individual smarts, according to a new University of British Columbia study.

The study, published in the Proceedings of the Royal Academy: Biological Sciences (open access)shows that when people can observe and learn from a wider range of teachers, groups can better maintain technical skills… read more

Does your brain see things you don’t?

Doctoral student shakes up 100 years of untested psychological theory
November 15, 2013

Sanguinetti showed study participants images of what appeared to be an abstract black object. Sometimes, however, there were real-world objects hidden at the borders of the black silhouette. In this image, the outlines of two seahorses can be seen in the white spaces surrounding the black object. (Image courtesy of Jay Sanguinetti)

A new study indicates that our brains perceive objects in everyday life that we may not be consciously aware of.

The finding by University of Arizona doctoral student Jay Sanguinetti challenges currently accepted models, in place for a century, about how the brain processes visual information.

Sanguinetti showed study participants a series of black silhouettes, some of which contained meaningful, real-world objects hidden in the… read more

IBM to take Watson to the cloud, opens to app developers

November 14, 2013

A hypothetical Watson medical app (credit: IBM)

IBM announced today that it will make its IBM Watson technology available to developers in the cloud so they can build apps using Watson.

IBM will be launching the IBM Watson Developers Cloud, a cloud-hosted marketplace for resources including a developer toolkit, educational materials, and access to Watson’s application programming interface (API).

Resources for developers

App providers can use their own company’s data, or access the IBM Watson Contentread more

A simplified graphical approach to machine learning

November 14, 2013

graph_theory

An algorithm that extends an artificial-intelligence technique to new tasks could aid in analysis of flight delays and social networks.

Much artificial-intelligence research is concerned with finding statistical correlations between variables: What combinations of visible features indicate the presence of a particular object in a digital image? What speech sounds correspond with instances of what words? What medical, genetic, and environmental factors are correlated with what diseases?

As… read more

‘Something very big is coming: our most important technology project yet,’ hints Stephen Wolfram

November 14, 2013

something-big-coming

In a blog post Wednesday, Stephen Wolfram said that “recently something amazing has happened” that is “profoundly important in the technological world, and beyond.”

He said he and his team have figured out how to take all the things they have been working on in the context of Wolfram|Alpha, Mathematica, CDF and so on — computational knowledge, symbolic programming,… read more

First images and spectra of individual carbon nanotubes in a general environment

November 14, 2013

nanotube

A technique for imaging individual carbon nanotubes and for characterizing their electronic and optical properties has been developed by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the University of California (UC) Berkeley.

The physical structure and electronic properties of each individual species of single-walled carbon nanotubes are governed by chirality, meaning their structure has a distinct left/right orientation or “handedness.”

So achieving chirality-controlled growth… read more

close and return to Home