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’1000 genomes barrier’ broken

Will help researchers interpret genetic changes in people with disease
November 1, 2012

population_variants

A landmark project that has sequenced 1,092 human genomes from individuals around the world will help researchers to interpret the genetic changes in people with disease.

This first study to break the “1000 genomes barrier” will enable scientists to begin to examine genetic variations at the scale of the populations of individual countries, as well as guiding them in their search for the rare genetic variations related… read more

China is building a 100-petaflops supercomputer

November 1, 2012

tianhe-1a-supercomputer

As the U.S. launched what’s expected to be the world’s fastest supercomputer at 20 petaflops (peak performance), China announced it is building a machine intended to be five times faster when it is deployed in 2015, IT World reports.

China’s Tianhe-2 supercomputer will run at 100 petaflops (quadrillion floating-point calculations per second) peak performance, designed by China’s National University of Defense Technology, according to the Guangzhou… read more

Crowdsourcing a cure for my brain cancer

November 1, 2012

brain_tumor_thingyverse

Digital artist Salvatore Iaconesi, an engineer, artist, hacker and 2012 TED fellow who teaches interaction and digital design at Sapienza University of Rome, Italy, hacked his medical records to put them online on his site artisopensource.net/cure in a global search for the best treatments, New Scientist reports.

 What happened?

It’s been incredible. I have been able to become an expert in… read more

IBM’s Watson goes to medical school

November 2, 2012

(Credit: IBM)

Next up for Watson: a stint as a medical student at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University, New York Times Bits reports.

The collaboration includes a bit of controlled crowdsourcing, with the Cleveland clinicians and medical school students answering Watson’s questions and correcting its mistakes.

“Hopefully, we can contribute to the training of… read more

World’s largest offshore wind farm generates first power

November 2, 2012

worlds-largest-offshore-windfarm

The first power has been produced at the London Array Offshore Wind Farm, DONG Energy, E.ON and Masdar have announced .

The 630MW scheme, located in the Thames Estuary, will be the world’s largest offshore wind farm, with construction on schedule to be finished by the end of the year.

The 175 turbines will produce enough power to supply over 470,000 UK homes with electricity.

London… read more

Imec and Nantero launch joint carbon-nanotube-memory program for high-density next-generation memory below 20nm

November 2, 2012

Illustration of CNTs forming an electrical connection (credit:

 

Imec, a world-leading research institution in nanoelectronics, and Nantero, Inc., a nanotechnology company using carbon nanotubes (CNTs) for the development of next-generation semiconductor devices, have announced a joint development program.

The collaboration will focus on the carbon-nanotube-based memory developed by Nantero, NRAM, and its application in high-density next-generation memories with a size under 20nm.

Carbon nanotubes… read more

NASA’S Fermi measures cosmic ‘fog’ produced by ancient starlight

November 2, 2012

nasa_fermi_cosmic_fog

Astronomers using data from NASA‘s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope have made the most accurate measurement of starlight in the universe and used it to establish the total amount of light from all of the stars that have ever shone, accomplishing a primary mission goal.

“The optical and ultraviolet light from stars continues to travel throughout the universe even after the stars cease to… read more

Privately owned genetic databases may hinder diagnosis

November 2, 2012

genome

This week, the European Journal of Human Genetics published an article showing that Myriad Genetics, providers of the BRCA1/2 genetic test, has amassed vast quantities of clinical data without sharing it, Professor Martina Cornel, chair of the European Society of Human Genetics‘ Professional and Public Policy committee, said:

“We are very concerned that such important data is being withheld from those who most need it. Interpreting the… read more

Rollable, foldable e-devices coming

November 2, 2012

foldable_rollable_edevices

What if a tablet screen were a paper-thin plastic that rolled like a window shade?

University of Cincinnati researchers have now announced experiment verification that such “electrofluidic imaging film” works. The breakthrough is a white, porous film coated with a thin layer of reflective electrodes and spacers that are then subjected to unique and sophisticated fluid mechanics in order to electrically transport the colored ink and clear-oil… read more

Following Sandy, DHS seeks security ‘Cyber Reserve’

November 3, 2012

(Credit: iStockphoto)

The damage to the electrical grid from Superstorm Sandy is just a taste of what could happen from a major cyberattack, says Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano, CSO Security and Risk reports.

And a DHS task force said this week that one way to minimize that kind of risk is to recruit a “Cyber Reserve” of computer security pros that could be… read more

The most important education technology in 200 years

November 3, 2012

NLP_course

Education is about to change dramatically, says Anant Agarwal, who heads edX, a $60 million MIT-Harvard effort to stream a college education over the Web, free, with plans to teach a billion students, Technology Review reports.

“Massive open online courses,” or MOOCs, offered by new education ventures like edX, Coursera, and Udacity, to name the most prominent (see “The Crisis in Higher Education”) will affect markets… read more

How to watch cancer spread in real time

November 4, 2012

Mouse with surgically implanted window to view growth and spread of cancer cells (credit: Laila Ritsma and Jacco van Rheenen)

Researchers have surgically implanted small glass windows (similar to ship port holes) into the abdomen of living mice to watch cancer spread over the course of 14 days, as reported in Science Translational Medicine.

“Visualization of the formation of metastasis [spread of cancer cells] has been hampered by the lack of long-term imaging windows for metastasis-prone organs, such as the the spleen, kidney, small intestine, pancreas, and liver,”… read more

Will cities of the future be filled with vertical slums?

November 4, 2012

Torre David

After a skyscraper in Caracas was abandoned, it quickly became home to 750 families. As cities develop, will slums build up instead of out? Fast Company Co.EXIST explores.

The 45-story Torre David office tower in Caracas, Venezuela, was nearly complete in the early 1990s when a pair of events changed the building’s trajectory forever: First, the project’s developer, David Brillembourg, died in 1993.

Then, the next year,… read more

How science can build a better you

November 4, 2012

How far would you go to modify yourself using the latest medical technology?

In a New York Times article Saturday, author and broadcaster David Ewing Duncan offers a partial checklist of cutting-edge medical-technology therapies now under way or in an experimental phase that might lead to future enhancements, including:

Present:

  • supermemory or attention pill
  • cochlear implant to improve hearing
  • brain-boosting neuro-feedback and

read more

China proposes space collaboration with India

November 4, 2012

Space solar power satellite (credit: SpaceWorks Engineering, Inc./Spaceworks Commercial)

The China Academy of Space Technology (CAST) proposed on Nov. 2 a joint collaboration for a space solar power mission with India and met with former Indian president APJ Abdul Kalam.

“Kalam assured, certainly he will take up this interest to the Government of India and ISRO [Indian Space Research Organization], so that a hard cooperation and collaboration between ISRO, DRDO [Defence Research & Development Organisation of India] and CAST is… read more

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