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One for the Ages: A Prescription That May Extend Life

October 31, 2006

In the last year, calorie-restricted diets have been shown in various animals to affect molecular pathways likely to be involved in the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease and cancer.

Researchers studying dietary effects on humans claim that calorie restriction may be more effective than exercise at preventing age-related diseases.

Dr. Richard A. Miller, a pathologist at the University of Michigan, estimated that a pill… read more

Computing, 2016: What Won’t Be Possible?

October 31, 2006

Computing and algorithmic processes are transforming business, the gloabl economy, culture, and even social sciences.

Future trends in computer imaging and storage will make it possible for a person, wearing a tiny digital device with a microphone and camera, to essentially record his or her life. The potential for communication, media and personal enrichment is striking.

British scientists grow human liver in a laboratory

October 31, 2006

British scientists have grown the world’s first artificial liver from stem cells in a breakthrough that will one day provide entire organs for transplant.

The liver tissue was created from stem cells found in blood from an umbilical cord minutes after birth. They were then placed in a bioreactor and various hormones and chemicals were added to coax the stem cells into turning into liver tissue.

The scientists… read more

Engineers building first space supercomputer

October 30, 2006

Engineering researchers at the University of Florida and Honeywell Aerospace are designing and building the computer projected to operate as much as 100 times faster than any computer in space today.

Expected to be launched aboard a NASA rocket on a test mission in 2009, the computer is needed to process rapidly increasing amounts of data gathered by advanced scientific satellites. It is also needed to help space probes… read more

Scientists present method for entangling macroscopic objects

October 30, 2006

Scientists have developed a theoretical model using entanglement swapping in order to entangle two micromechanical oscillators.

One potential use for entanglement swapping is in quantum repeaters for future quantum computers, which would amp up the signal over long distances to prevent it from being buried by noise and dying out.

Vision-body link tested in robot experiments

October 30, 2006

“Embodied cognition” experiments involving real and simulated robots suggest that the relationship between physical movement and sensory input could be crucial to developing more intelligent machines.

This crop revolution may succeed where GM failed

October 30, 2006

New agricultural technology called marker-assisted selection (MAS) offers a sophisticated method to greatly accelerate classical breeding.

A growing number of scientists believe MAS will eventually replace GM food.

Rapidly accumulating information about crop genomes is allowing scientists to identify genes associated with traits such as yield, and then scan crop relatives for the presence of those genes.

Lighting up the $1 trillion power market

October 30, 2006

Silicon Valley firms are driving a sizzling $11 billion worldwide market in solar energy, part of a rapidly expanding alternative-energy economy that promises to shake up the way power is produced and consumed as profoundly as the region’s computer and Internet companies upended global communications and commerce in the late 20th century.

Fears about global warming have triggered public and political demand for renewable energy, which is expected to… read more

Are we the Mongols of the Information Age?

October 30, 2006

The future of U.S. power rests in its Industrial Age military adapting to decentralized adversaries.

Firms point to biometric future

October 27, 2006
Three dimensional facial images can be created and stored in seconds

Keys, cards, passports and PINs could soon be a thing of the past as biometric technology makes our bodies the only passwords we need.

Launching a new kind of warfare

October 27, 2006

By 2015, the US Department of Defense plans that one third of its fighting strength will be composed of robots, part of a $127 billion project known as Future Combat Systems (FCS), a transformation that is part of the largest technology project in American history.

Honeybee genome sequenced

October 26, 2006

The just-completed genome sequence of the western honeybee may help explain the molecular and genetic basis of this insect’s unusual sociality.

The Baylor College of Medicine in Houston scientists found that several types of honeybee genes are more similar to vertebrate genes than to other insect genes, including many involved in circadian rhythms, RNA interference, DNA methylation, and learning and memory.

A Growing Intelligence Around Earth

October 26, 2006

NASA’s EO-1 is a new breed of satellite with AI programming to notice things that change (like the plume of a volcano) and take appropriate action, such as monitoring that specific location.

EO-1 can re-organize its own priorities to study volcanic eruptions, flash floods, forest fires, disintegrating sea-ice, and other unexpected events. It can also use sensors on other satellites or on the ground as a “sensorweb.”

WWF: Humanity Using Resources Too Fast

October 26, 2006

The Earth’s ecosystems are being run down faster than ever because humanity is using more natural resources than our planet can replenish, the World Wildlife Fund said Tuesday.

Eventually, ecological assets, such as forests and fisheries, will be harvested to such a degree that they might disappear altogether.

Researchers make important advancement in unraveling mysteries of fusion energy

October 26, 2006

University of Nevada researchers have used a plasma confinement system that can generate 100-nanosecond pulses exceeding 20 million amps to create the microscopic effects that cause inefficiencies limiting the conversion of electrical energy required for implosion energy.

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