June 27, 2009
On Saturday, amateur radio operators will bounce signals off the moon, using parabolic antenna radio telescopes around the world.
Also see Echoes of Apollo
MIT Media Lab researcher Hiroshi Ishii wants people to be able to interact with their computers and other devices by moving around and by handling real physical objects: by doing what comes naturally.
About 60 people from 20 nations will descend on the MIT campus today to begin the International Development Design Summit, an intensive month-long process of creating technological solutions for the needs of people in the world’s developing nations.
The goal of the program is to develop simple, inexpensive devices that in some cases can be produced locally and make a real difference for people and communities.
Several of… read more
Computer security researchers have shown they could reprogram, shut down and deliver jolts of electricity to a combination heart defibrillator-pacemaker that would potentially be fatal.
They also showed they could glean personal patient data by eavesdropping on the device, made by Medtronic.
Johns Hopkins University researchers have developed a tiny handlike gripper that can grasp tissue or cell samples and could make it easier for doctors to perform minimally invasive surgery, such as biopsies.
The device curls its “fingers” around an object when triggered chemically, and it can be moved around remotely with a magnet.
Scientists routinely seek to reprogram bacteria to produce proteins for drugs, biofuels and more, but they have struggled to get those bacteria to follow orders.
A hidden feature of the genetic code, it turns out, could achieve that. The feature controls how much of the desired protein bacteria produce, a team from the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University reported in… read more
The method provides a template for assembling complex structures, such as liver and fat tissues, for tissue or organ replacements.
According to IBN Executive Director Professor Jackie Y. Ying, “Our tissue engineering approach gives researchers great control and flexibility… read more
The researchers studied the brains of rodents for the short-term and long-term effects of eating a high-fat diet. After giving groups of 6 to 10 rats and mice a high-fat diet for periods from one day… read more
Researchers at MIT and their collaborators have developed a high-performance and possibly less expensive way to convert solar heat into electricity, using flat-panel solar power combined with hot water systems.
Their system produces power with an efficiency roughly eight times higher than ever previously reported for a solar thermoelectric device that produces electricity from solar heat. It does so by generating and harnessing a temperature difference of… read more
Engineers at Stanford University have developed a prototype single-fiber endoscope that is as thin as a human hair, with a resolution four times better than previous devices of similar design.
The “micro-endoscope” is a significant step forward in high-resolution, minimally invasive bioimaging, with potential applications in research and clinical practice. Micro-endoscopy could enable new methods in diverse fields ranging from study of the brain to early cancer… read more
The technique is a major advancement toward the ultimate goal of imaging biological processes in action at the atomic level.
The technique uses two silicon-nitride microchips with windows etched in their centers and pressing them together until only… read more
As we approach the limits of miniaturization of silicon semiconductors, at universities and corporate laboratories around the world, researchers are trying to develop the next generation of chip-making technologies.
Stanford University researchers are making prototypes of a new kind of molecular-scale semiconductor nanocircuit called a carbon nanotube field effect transistor (CNFET) that is far smaller and uses far less power than today’s most advanced silicon-based computer circuits. It may… read more
Several studies in the last year have found that missing or extra pieces of DNA in the 1q21.1 region put the bearer at risk for a surprisingly broad range of psychiatric and neurological disorders, including autism, schizophrenia, and mental retardation.
The discovery that one piece of DNA can lead to such diverse outcomes is opening new avenues in the study of disease.
You can build a holographic microscope for $250 (for parts), MIT Technology Review Physics arXiv Blog reports.
Holographic microscopes record the 3D shape of tiny objects such as cells in high resolution, unlike traditional microscopes, which have a tiny field of view and shallow depth of field.
With a holographic microscope, you make a hologram of the sample: split a laser beam in two, use one as… read more
A thermal regulator that uses neural networks to learn about your house as the seasons change has been developed by a spinoff from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) and the Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM).
Most home thermal regulators only react to a single parameter — the outside temperature — in regulating their output.