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A rice genome to feed the world

Will it deal with the "9 billion-people question" for the year 2050?
July 31, 2014

Understanding the complete genome of African rice will enable researchers and agriculturalists to develop new varieties of rice with African rice's hardiness, making them better able to adapt to conditions of a changing climate. (Credit: International Rice Research Institute)

An international team of researchers led by the University of Arizona (UA) has sequenced the complete genome of African rice.

The genetic information will enhance scientists’ and agriculturalists’ understanding of the growing patterns of African rice, and help development of new rice varieties that are better able to cope with increasing environmental stressors to help solve global hunger challenges, the researchers say.

The research paper was… read more

A roadmap for metabolic reprogramming of aging

December 4, 2012

Electron microscope image of a mitochondrion

To survey previously uncharted territory, a team of researchers at UW-Madison has created an “atlas” that maps more than 1,500 unique landmarks within mitochondria that could provide clues to the metabolic connections between caloric restriction and aging.

The map, as well as the techniques used to create it, could lead to a better understanding of how cell metabolism is rewired in some cancers, age-related diseases… read more

A Robomedic for the Battlefield

February 3, 2009

A snakelike robotic arm developed by Carnegie Mellon University scientists may one day medically attend to soldiers as they are carried off the battlefield.

A robot as cheap, easy-to-use, and safe as an iPhone

August 26, 2012

rethink_robotics

Rethink Robotics’ goal is that its [forthcoming] cheap, easy-to-use, safe robot will be to industrial robots what the personal computer was to the mainframe computer, or the iPhone was to the traditional phone, says The New York Times writer Thomas L. Friedman.

“That is, it will bring robots to the small business and even home and enable people to write apps for them the way they do with PCs… read more

A robot bomb tester

November 11, 2012

lexi_llnl

In 2006, a plot by terrorists to blow up as many as 10 passenger planes in mid-air using peroxide-based liquid explosives was foiled by British authorities.

That led to the infamous TSA “no liquids or gels” flight restriction. But it also led to creation of the National Explosives Engineering Sciences Security (NEXESS) Center at Sandia National Laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, funded by the Department of Homeland… read more

A robot dog with an iPhone face

March 29, 2012

robotdogiphone

Bandai — the Japanese company that brought us the Tamagotchi — has announced Smartpet, a robotic dog that uses an iPhone for a face, Technology Review Hello World reports..

Using a free app (due out March 31) and the iPhone Facetime camera, you can make movements to tell the robo-pup to do various tricks. Smartpet can also recognize voice commands, serve as an alarm clock and hands-free phone, and it… read more

A robot in your future

May 14, 2001

A wireless videoconferencing robot on wheels that allows telecommuters to hold real-time video chats with people in their office?

That’s what Sprint is planning with its Digitally Enhanced Network Appliance Project.

A Robot Network Seeks to Enlist Your Computer

October 21, 2008

Automated botnets control millions of PCs, infecting them in about five minutes and using them to spread infections and snoop on financial information, according to Microsoft’s Internet Safety Enforcement Team, a group of about 20 researchers and investigators.

A robot takes stock

Image-processing and machine-learning algorithms could help stores manage inventory
July 4, 2012

andyvision_cmu-1341279055799

The Andyvision robot scans the shelves in the Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) campus store to generate a real-time interactive map of the store, which customers can browse via an in-store screen.

At the same time, the robot performs a detailed inventory check, identifying each item on the shelves, and alerting employees if stock is low or if an item has been misplaced.

While making its rounds, the robot uses… read more

A Robot that Navigates Like a Person

June 30, 2009

European researchers have developed a robot capable of moving autonomously by algorithms designed to mimic different parts of the human visual system, with two cameras that serve as “eyes” in a movable “head.”

A robot that runs like a cat

Hopefully, this won't lead to a future cheetah-cub videos craze
June 17, 2013

cheetah-cub

Thanks to its cat-modeled legs, EPFL’s four-legged “cheetah-cub robot” is small, light and the fastest in its category (small quadruped robots under 30Kg): it can run 5 kilometers per hour (3.1 mph) — nearly seven times its body length in one second. .

Developed by EPFL’s Biorobotics Laboratory (Biorob),  biomechanics, the robot will serve as a platform for research in locomotion and biomechanics.… read more

A Robot That’s Learning to Smile

July 13, 2009
(USCD)

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) have given the realistic-looking robot Einstein the ability to improve its own expressions through learning.

A robot with two extra fingers helps you grip stuff

July 23, 2014

The 7-fingered hand can perform tasks that would usually require two hands, such as holding up a tablet computer and typing letters on it (credit: Harry Asad and Faye Wu)

MIT researchers have developed a robot that enhances the grasping motion of the human hand.

The device, worn around your wrist, works like two extra fingers adjacent to the pinky and thumb.

A novel control algorithm enables it to move in sync with the wearer’s fingers to grasp objects of various shapes and sizes. Wearing the robot, a user could use one hand to hold the… read more

A robotic exoskeleton for space and Earth

October 17, 2012

x1_robotic_exoskeleton

A robotic exoskeleton called X1 has been developed by NASAThe Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC), and Oceaneering Space Systems.

The 57-pound device is a robot that a human could wear over their body either to assist or inhibit movement in leg joints.

In the inhibit mode, the robotic device would be used as an in-space exercise machine to supply resistance against leg… read more

A robotic fish that glides for long distances

January 18, 2013

A team of MSU researchers has developed a robotic fish that can swim and glide long distances while gathering data such as water quality and temperature (credit: G.L. Kohuth/Michigan State university)

Michigan State University (MSU) scientists have redesigned a “robotic fish,” giving it the ability to glide long distances, using little to no energy, while measuring water temperature and quality and other data that can aid in testing and cleaning lakes and rivers.

According to research team leader Xiaobo Tan, MSU associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, while gliding  uses less energy, it’s slower and less… read more

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