science + technology news

Transistor-Cantilever Combo Detects Biomolecules With High Sensitivity

February 28, 2006

Northwestern University reseachers coupled a microcantilever with a metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor to yield a device that generates a direct electrical signal whenever the cantilever bends in response to biomolecule binding.

It is capable of detecting bending of as little as five nanometers, sufficient to reliably detect binding of DNA, antibodies, and prostate specific antigen (PSA) to the microcantilevers.

It can also be mass-produced using standard computer chip… read more

Faster Chips, Kill, Kill, Kill

February 28, 2006

PCs with 5-GHz CPUs should soon be on store shelves. We can expect transistor counts on CPUs to double from 1 billion to 2 billion in two years, and 4 billion in four years; and the amount of DRAM per chip should continue to double from a maximum of 1 Gigabit now to 4 Gigabits per chip in four years.

Entanglement heats up

February 28, 2006

“Entanglement” could occur at any temperature and not just in systems cooled to near zero according to new calculations by a team of physicists in the UK, Austria and Portugal.

They have found that the photons in ordinary laser light can be quantum mechanically entangled with the vibrations of a macroscopic mirror, no matter how hot the mirror is. The result is unexpected because hot objects are usually thought… read more

3D plasma shapes created in thin air

February 28, 2006

The night sky could soon be lit up with gigantic three-dimensional ads, thanks to a Japanese laser display that creates glowing images in thin air.

The display uses an ionization effect which occurs when a beam of laser light is focused to a point in air.

The Future of the Blog

February 27, 2006

Future blogging software will focus on more select and filtered readership, allowing people to read certain posts, and making it easier for people to incorporate more media and mobile capabilities.

Taking Spying to Higher Level, Agencies Look for More Ways to Mine Data

February 27, 2006

Intelligence agency systems are taking data mining techniques further, applying software analysis tools now routinely used by law enforcement agencies to identify criminal activities and political terrorist organizations that would otherwise be missed by human eavesdroppers.

Neurological Technology Attracts Doctors

February 27, 2006

An emerging class of implantable medical devices called neuromodulators — tiny machines that stimulate the central nervous system to treat a host of disorders — could be the next big thing for some of the market’s hottest medical technology companies.

Potential uses include treating diseases including depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, erectile dysfunction, traumatic brain injuries, obesity, angina, incontinence and ringing in the ears.

Huge protein-interaction database could save lives

February 27, 2006

The Human Protein Reference Database, the first large-scale analysis of how proteins interact inside our cells, may help biologists identify novel gene mutations involved in human disease, researchers say.

Enzyme computer could live inside you

February 24, 2006

A molecular computer that uses enzymes to perform calculations has been built by researchers in Israel.

They believe enzyme-powered computers could eventually be implanted into the human body and used to, for example, tailor the release of drugs to a specific person’s metabolism.

Is our universe about to be mangled?

February 23, 2006

Our universe may one day be obliterated or assimilated by a larger universe, according to a controversial new analysis. The work suggests the parallel universes proposed by some quantum theorists may not actually be parallel but could interact — and with disastrous consequences.

Quantum Dots ‘Talk’

February 23, 2006

Ohio University scientists who hope to use quantum dots as the building blocks for the next generation of computers have found a way to make these artificial atoms communicate.

They found that when the dots were arranged at a distance from each other greater than the radius of the dots, light waves traveled between the nanocrystals coherently. In previous research, the light’s wavelength would change or become irregular during… read more

Quantum computer works best switched off

February 23, 2006

A quantum computer program has produced an answer without actually running.

Digital Books Start A New Chapter

February 22, 2006

Lighter devices, better displays, and the iPod craze could make digital books best-sellers.

Portable devices are becoming lighter and more appealing. Books are being scanned into digital form by the thousands. The most important step forward may be in “digital ink,” the technology used for displaying letters on a screen.

E Ink has created a method for arranging tiny black and white capsules into words and images with… read more

Quantum teleporter creates laser beam clones

February 22, 2006

Quantum physicists have moved beyond teleporting individual photons to imitating a classic science-fiction scenario — a teleportation machine that generates two near-identical copies of the original.

The Unconscious Mind: A Great Decision Maker

February 21, 2006

Dutch psychologists found that people struggling to make complex decisions did best when they were distracted and were not able to think consciously about the choice at all.

The research not only backs up the common advice to “sleep on it” when facing difficult choices, but it also suggests that the unconscious brain can actively reason as well as produce weird dreams and Freudian slips.

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