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Data, Music, Video: Raising a Curtain on Future Gadgetry

January 2, 2006

The flat-panel televisions will be getting bigger, the MP3 players and cellphones will be getting smaller. And almost everything will be getting cheaper.

But the biggest trend expected at the International Consumer Electronics Show, which begins this week in Las Vegas, is that these machines will be communicating with one another. The theme of this year’s show might best be described as Convergence: This Time We Mean It.

The Quest For Immortality

January 1, 2006

60 Minutes correspondent Morley Safer interviewed Dr. Aubrey de Grey, who says that sometime in the next 20 to 30 years or so, we’ll be able to recondition ourselves for the first steps towards immortality.

(Video of interview available)

Scholars debate whether to limit scientific research

December 30, 2005

A conference titled “Forbidding Science? Balancing Freedom, Security, Innovation and Precaution” will explore whether scientific research should be restricted – and, if so, how far “too far” might be.

It will include research controversies in the areas of pathogens and toxins, nanotechnology and cognitive enhancement and will be held Jan. 12 – 13 at Arizona State University in Tempe.

Source: Arizona State University news release

Oh, Has Uncle Sam Got Mail

December 30, 2005

The rapid adoption of electronic communications technology in the last decade has created a major crisis for the National Archives.

The amount of data to be preserved has exploded in recent years, thanks to the proliferation of high-tech tools such as personal computers and wireless email devices such as BlackBerries. When President Bush leaves office after eight years, the White House is expected to turn over more than 100… read more

Vitamin D May Lower Some Cancer Risk

December 29, 2005

There is growing evidence that vitamin D helps protect against colorectal cancer, and now a group of researchers who have long studied the vitamin say the same is true for breast cancer and ovarian cancer.

The researchers recommend 1,000 international units (IU) of vitamin D daily. Current recommendations call for people between the ages of 1 and 50 to consume 200 IU of vitamin D daily, with 400 IU… read more

Commentary: Living forever

December 29, 2005

Ray Kurzweil “takes human evolution far beyond today’s most optimistic forecasts in … arguably the most blogged-about book of 2005, a 640-page blockbuster: ‘The Singularity Is Near.’”

“These hold that anyone born today will live to be 130 and productive to 110, and those born in the 22nd century will live to 250. The glass-half-full-and-filling geomancers of the human genome research world can perceive ‘immortality’ in the 23rd century.… read more

Best and Worst Punditry of 2005

December 29, 2005

A review of 2005 forecasts by well-known technology pundits reveals a familiar mix of right and wrong guesses.

‘Give stem cells to ill patients’

December 29, 2005

Professor Ian Wilmut, the scientist behind the cloning of Dolly the Sheep, is calling for stem cell treatment to be offered to people with terminal illnesses.

“If we wait until things are totally tested and analysed in animals, it will deny some people treatment,” he said.

Quantum Trickery: Testing Einstein’s Strangest Theory

December 29, 2005

Experiments in quantum entanglement are increasing challenging Einstein’s critique of “spooky action at a distance.”

The world is “not as real as we think,” says Anton Zeilinger of the University of Vienna. It’s “even weirder than what quantum physics tells us.”

Chip Industry Sets a Plan for Life After Silicon

December 29, 2005

A transition from silicon to nanontechnology around the year 2015 is forecast in the biannual International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors, to be issued Saturday. The report is used by the semiconductor industry as a planning tool to determine how best to spend research and development money for new technology.

2005: The year in technology

December 28, 2005

Many weird and wonderful new gadgets, gizmos and inventions were revealed in 2005. Autonomous cars, robotic assistants and nano-circuitry provided a bright view of the future, while cellphone viruses, virtual crime sprees and “non-lethal” crowd control weapons hinted at technological troubles ahead.

The busiest inventor of the year was almost certainly Google, which continues to grow from a search engine into a many-tentacled technological titan, with a service for… read more

New Microsoft Patent Apps Discusses the Building of Personalized Portals

December 27, 2005

Microsoft has had an interesting patent application published descibing a system that assists users in building personalized portals.

Top 10 tech trends for 2006

December 27, 2005

Cell phones that “do everything,” Internet phone calls become more popular, the office moves to the Web, stem-cell research advances, biotechs target flu vaccines, small start-ups go global, video comes to the blog, on-demand video everywhere, and clean technologies are the top tech trends forecast by the Merc for 2006.

The 50 Best Robots Ever

December 27, 2005

They’re exploring the deep sea and distant planets. They’re saving lives in the operating room and on the battlefield. They’re transforming factory floors and filmmaking….

Best Tech Moments of 2005

December 26, 2005

New software apps changed the way we looked at the world, while hardware got smaller, faster and more fun. On the net, blogs provided many of the most dramatic moments.

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