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The ‘Internet of cars’ is approaching a crossroads

June 27, 2013

vehicle2vehicle

Wireless vehicle networks could make driving safer, more efficient, and less polluting, but the cost of deployment will be significant, MIT Technology Review reports.

This week, officials from the U.S. Department of Transportation in Washington, DC, will see the technology in action, in a demonstration organized by experts from the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute and various communications equipment and car manufacturers.… read more

Siri’s creators demonstrate predictive assistant for office workers

June 27, 2013

sri_bright

SRI, is developing Bright, an intelligent assistant that could someday know what information you need before you even ask, MIT Technology Review reports.

Initially, Bright is meant to cut down on the cognitive overload faced by workers in high-stress, data-intensive jobs like emergency response and network security.

But it could eventually trickle down to laptops and smartphones as a “cognitive desktop” and… read more

Solar-power materials head in a new direction: thinner

Atom-thick photovoltaic sheets could pack hundreds of times more power per weight than conventional solar cells
June 27, 2013

The MIT team found that an effective solar cell could be made from a stack of two one-molecule-thick materials: Graphene (a one-atom-thick sheet of carbon atoms, shown at bottom in blue) and molybdenum disulfide (above, with molybdenum atoms shown in red and sulfur in yellow). The two sheets together are thousands of times thinner than conventional silicon solar cells.<br />
GRAPHIC: JEFFREY GROSSMAN AND MARCO BERNARDI

MIT researchers are opening a new avenue for improving solar cells, aiming to produce the thinnest and most lightweight solar panels possible.

Such panels, which have the potential to surpass any substance other than reactor-grade uranium in terms of energy produced per pound of material, could be made from stacked sheets of one-molecule-thick materials such as graphene or molybdenum disulfide.

Jeffrey Grossman,… read more

New laser remotely detects what substances are made of

Could be new eyes for military, TSA
June 27, 2013

new-laser-shows-what-substances-are-made-of-could-be-new-eyes-for-military-orig-20130625

A new laser that can show what objects are made of could help military aircraft identify hidden dangers such as weapons arsenals far below.

“For the defense and intelligence communities, this could add a new set of eyes,” said Mohammed Islam, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science and biomedical engineering at the University of Michigan.

The system, which is made… read more

Dr. James Martin 1933 – 2013

June 26, 2013

James Martin

Statement by Oxford Martin School

It is with great sadness that the Oxford Martin School has learned of the death of our Founder, Dr James Martin.

James Martin was an inspiration to millions — an extraordinary intellect, with wide-ranging interests, boundless energy and an unwavering commitment to addressing the greatest challenges facing humanity. For 25 years Martin was the highest-selling author of books on computing and… read more

A quantum computing solution for unstructured search

June 26, 2013

Bose-Einstein condensate

Tom Wong, a graduate student in physics and David Meyer, professor of mathematics at the University of California, San Diego, have proposed a new algorithm for quantum computing, that will speed up unstructured search.

The goal is to locate a particular item within an unsorted pile of data. Solving this problem on a classical computer, which uses 1s and 0s stored on magnetic media, is… read more

A molecular database for developing organic solar cells

June 26, 2013

molecular_space_logo

Harvard researchers have released a massive database of more than 2 million molecules that might be useful in the construction of solar cells that rely on organic compounds for construction of organic solar cells for the production of renewable energy.

Developed as part of the Materials Genome Initiative launched by the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) the goal of… read more

‘Materials Genome Initiative’ commitments announced

June 26, 2013

Materials Innovation Infrastructure

The Obama Administration and academic and industry partners have announced a series of commitments in support of the Materials Genome Initiative, a public-private endeavor that aims to cut in half the time it takes to develop novel materials that can fuel advanced manufacturing and bolster the 21st century American economy.

The announcements come two years to the day after President Obama launched the Materials Genome… read more

Generating mind-controlled patterns in a fishbowl

June 26, 2013

magnetic-mind

Magnetic Mind translates brainwaves into kinetic art, using a NeuroSky MindWave brain-computer interface headset, an Arduino board, an electromagnet, and suspended ferrofluid (iron filings in water + alcohol).

Lindsay Browder, creator of the project, uses this device to control an alien-looking liquid in a fishbowl with her thoughts and attention, Neuro Gadget reports.

The ferrofluid follows her mind activity, changes shape, grows… read more

Brain activity patterns preserve traces of previous cognitive activity

June 26, 2013

past_brain_activation

Weizmann Institute scientists discover that spontaneously emerging brain activity patterns preserve traces of previous cognitive activity.

What if experts could dig into the brain, like archaeologists, and uncover the history of past experiences? This ability might reveal what makes each of us a unique individual, and it could enable the objective diagnosis of a wide range of neuropsychological diseases.

New research at the Weizmann Institute hints… read more

Self-assembling DNA molecules act as scaffolding as a first step in creating artificial photosynthesis

June 26, 2013

An artificial light-collecting antenna system. Binding a large number of light-absorbing molecules ("red balls") to a DNA molecule, which is then modified with a porphyrin unit (blue) will result in the creation of a self-assembling system that resembles light harvesting in natural photosynthesis.

A research team at Chalmers University of Technology The team has demonstrated that it is possible to use self-assembling DNA molecules as scaffolding as a first step to create artificial photosynthesis.

Proteins in plants and algae create a complex scaffolding (structure) that organizes chlorophyll molecules to collect light and use it to synthesize sugars and other energy-rich molecules in a reaction center. Previous attempts at… read more

Sugar solution makes tissues see-through for brain imaging at unprecedented resolution

June 25, 2013

embryo_SeeDB

RIKEN Center for Developmental biology researchers have developed a new sugar and water-based solution that turns tissues transparent in just three days, without disrupting the shape and chemical nature of the samples.

Combined with fluorescence microscopy, this technique enabled them to obtain detailed images of a mouse brain at unprecedented resolution.

Over the past few years, teams in the USA and Japan have reported a… read more

New discovery of the ways cells move could boost understanding of spread of cancer

June 25, 2013

Cheekcells_stained

Led by researchers at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) and the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), investigators found that epithelial cells — the type that form a barrier between the inside and the outside of the body, such as skin cells — move in a group, propelled by forces both from within and from nearby cells — to fill any unfilled spaces they encounter.… read more

Two-dimensional atomically flat transistors show promise for next-generation green electronics

June 25, 2013

flat_transistor

Researchers at UC Santa Barbara in collaboration with University of Notre Dame have demonstrated the highest reported drive current on a transistor made of a monolayer of tungsten diselenide (WSe2), a 2-dimensional atomic crystal categorized as a transition metal dichalcogenide (TMD).

The discovery is also the first demonstration of an “n-type” WSe2 field-effect-transistor (FET), showing the tremendous potential of this material for future low-power and… read more

Are you ready for smart ingestible pills that monitor your health and replace passwords?

June 25, 2013

CorTemp pill (credit: HQ Inc.)

People on the cutting edge are swallowing ingestible smart pills containing minuscule sensors and transmitters to monitor a range of health data and wirelessly share this information with a doctor, The New York Times reports.

A pill made by Proteus Digital Health can track medication-taking behaviors, monitor how a patient’s body is responding to medicine, and detect the person’s movements and rest patterns.

People with heart… read more

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