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How Google plans to find the UnGoogleable

November 27, 2012


Google wants to improve its mobile search services by automatically delivering information you wouldn’t think to search for online in a research exercise known as the Daily Information Needs Study, MIT Technology Review reports.

For example, contextual information provided by mobile devices — via GPS chips and other sensors — can provide clues about a person and his situation, allowing Google to guess what that person wants.… read more

Black hole discovered 26,000 light years away, says NASA

Something to worry about more than an asteroid?
February 14, 2013

Supernova Remnant W49B (credits: X-ray: NASA/CXC/MIT/L.Lopez et al; Infrared: Palomar; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA)

A supernova remnant called W49B 26,000 light-years away may contain the most recent black hole formed in the Milky Way galaxy, new data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory suggests.

The remnant, about a thousand years old as seen from Earth, appears to be the product of a rare explosion in which matter is ejected at high speeds along the poles of a rotating star.

(One newspaper suggested,… read more

Tim Berners-Lee tells U.K. that its latest snooping bill is ‘destruction of human rights’

April 18, 2012


The UK government is toying around with the idea of introducing counterterrorism laws that would open up email and social networks to more surveillance.

The proposed bill will allow the GCHQ to monitor all Skype, email, and social media communication, as well as log every website that Britain users visit.

Tim Berners-Lee is calling it “destruction of human rights.”

He didn’t stop there though,… read more

New studies reveal evidence that cell phone radiation damages DNA, brain, and sperm

May 24, 2011

New independent studies offer proof that confirms findings from the Council of Europe: pulsed digital signals from cell phones disrupt DNA, impair brain function, and lower sperm count, according to a statement by the Environmental Health Trust (EHT).

On May 23, a think-tank of experts organized by Gazi University and EHT convened at a workshop in Istanbul, Turkey, “Science Update:read more

NSA tracking/graphing social-network connections of Americans

September 29, 2013

NSA diagram

Since 2010, the National Security Agency has been exploiting its huge collections of data to create sophisticated graphs of some Americans’ social connections that can identify their associates, their locations at certain times, their traveling companions and other personal information, according to newly disclosed documents and interviews with officials, an investigation by The New York Times has revealed.

A top-secret

read more

Bio patch can regrow bone for dental implants and craniofacial defects

November 11, 2013

Researchers at the University of Iowa have created a bio patch to regenerate missing or damaged bone. The patch has been shown to nearly fully regrow missing skull, seen in the image above. Image courtesy of Satheesh Elangovan.

Researchers at the University of Iowa have created a bio patch to regenerate missing or damaged bone by putting DNA into a nano-sized particle that delivers bone-producing instructions directly into cells via genes.

“This is the first study to use plasmid DNA encoding platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) for bone regeneration applications,” researcher Aliasger K. Salem, Ph.D. — a professor in the College of Pharmacy and a co-corresponding author on the… read more

Multi-party quantum communication now possible, physicists demonstrate

March 26, 2014


Physicists at the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo have demonstrated the distribution of three entangled photons at three different locations (Alice, Bob, and Charlie) several hundreds of meters apart for the first time, proving quantum nonlocality for more than two entangled photons.

The findings of the experiment, Experimental Three-Particle Quantum Nonlocality under Strict Locality Conditions, are published in… read more

Pentagon says nuclear missile is in reach for North Korea

April 12, 2013

North Korean test site where a nuclear test took place February 12, 2013 (credit: Google Earth)

A new assessment by the Pentagon’s intelligence arm has concluded for the first time, with “moderate confidence,” that North Korea has learned how to make a nuclear weapon small enough to be delivered by a ballistic missile, according to The New York Times Thursday.

But late Thursday, the director of national intelligence, James R. Clapper Jr., released a statement saying that the assessment did not represent a consensus of… read more

The emergence of individuality in genetically identical mice

May 13, 2013

Enrichment enclosure housing 40 mice

How do people and other organisms evolve into individuals that are distinguished from others by their own personal brain structure and behavior?

Why do identical twins not resemble each other perfectly even when they grew up together?

To shed light on these questions, the scientists observed 40 genetically identical mice that were kept in an enclosure that offered a rich shared environment with a large variety of activity… read more

Living Earth Simulator: the ultimate HPC big-data application

December 6, 2011

The European Union (EU) is pledging 1 billion euros over 10 years on a set of advanced computer technologies, including a supercomputing network designed to forecast social and economic events, in particular, crisis events.

The supercomputing side of the effort has been given the grand title of the Living Earth Simulator (LES). The LES is part of the FuturICT Knowledge Accelerator Project, which also encompasses a global sensor network… read more

BRAIN initiative report lists detailed research priorities

September 18, 2013


A scientific team has released a report that identifies research priorities for the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) initiative, Science Insider reports.

The report lists nine top research priorities. It highlights the need for cheaper, faster technologies that can trace connections between individual brain cells and record large networks of cells acting in synchrony.

It calls for development of tools that can… read more

Solar power without solar cells: A hidden magnetic effect of light could make it possible

April 15, 2011

A dramatic and surprising magnetic effect of light discovered by University of Michigan researchers could lead to solar power without traditional semiconductor-based solar cells.

The researchers found a way to make an “optical battery,” said Stephen Rand, a professor in the departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Physics and Applied Physics.

Light has electric and magnetic components. Until now, scientists thought the effects of the… read more

The Titan Arm helps you lift 40 more pounds

But there no plans to sell it as a product yet.
October 30, 2013


Out of shape and can’t lift something? No prob,  just strap on an external bicep — the Titan Arm, a new invention from a group of engineering students at the University of Pennsylvania.

That’s if it’s ever available commercially (co-inventor Nick McGill told KurzweilAI they’re working on it, no date yet). If so, the Titan Arm will help lift 40 pounds more than you normally can.… read more

New surfaces repel most known liquids

January 18, 2013

superoleophobic surface (credit: Shuaijun Pan et al./JACS)

Scientists have developed new “superomniphobic” surfaces that will lead to stain-proof, spill-proof clothing, protective garments, and other products that shrug off virtually every liquid — from blood and ketchup to concentrated acids.

Anish Tuteja and colleagues point out that scientists have previously reported “omniphobic” surfaces, the term meaning that such surfaces can cause a range of different liquids to bead up and not spread on them. But… read more

Hot-fire tests show 3D-printed rocket parts rival traditionally manufactured parts

Potential to reduce the time and cost associated with making complex parts by an order of magnitude
July 25, 2013


NASA engineers at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., have put rocket engine parts to the test and compared their performance to parts made the old-fashioned way with welds and multiple parts during planned subscale acoustic tests for the Space Launch System (SLS) heavy-lift rocket.

In little more than a month, Marshall engineers built two subscale injectors with a specialized 3-D… read more

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