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Hypercubes Could Be Building Blocks of Nanocomputers

April 2, 2008

University of Oklahoma researchers have investigated a new variant of multidimensional hypercubes as computational elements of nanocomputers: the “M-hypercube,” which could provide a higher-dimensional layout to support three-dimensional integrated circuits and the quantum properties of nanocomputers.

The unique structure of hypercubes provides a massively parallel, distributed processing architecture with simple, robust communication linkages, able to count single electrons, and allow for parallel computing, reversibility, locality, and a three-dimensional architecture.… read more

Artificial stupidity

February 27, 2003 takes on the controversial annual competition for the Loebner Prize in artificial intelligence.

Microchip can detect type and severity of cancer

September 29, 2009

University of Toronto researchers have used nanowires decorated with DNA to develop a microchip sensitive enough to quickly identify low levels of signature biomarkers that indicate the presence of cancer at the cellular level.

Analysis can be completed in 30 minutes, a vast improvement over existing diagnostic procedures, which generally take days.

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.”

Uncle Sam searches for a quantum leap

April 6, 2008

Under its new QuEST (Quantum Entanglement Science and Technology) program, DARPA has issued a request for proposal for research projects that address “”dramatic improvements” in “the nature, establishment, control, or transport of multi-qubit entanglement.”

Applications might include parallel computing power in a quantum computer and secure communications using quantum cryptography.

Scientists develop ‘brain chip’

March 12, 2003

USC researchers are developing the first brain prothesis, an artificial hippocampus to replace damaged brain tissue.

Scientists will initially test the “brain chip” on rat brains. The silicon-chip programming was developed by stimulating slices of rat hippocampus with electrical signals millions of times to determine which input produced a corresponding output. The chip would translate activity coming from the rest of the brain and send the necessary output instructions… read more

Self-Destructive Behavior in Cells May Hold Key to a Longer Life

October 6, 2009

Links are now emerging between cellular autophagy (eating oneself, a strategy to endure famines) and preventing diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and cancer, and may even let us live longer.

A planet made of diamond

August 29, 2011

Pulsar Planet

A once-massive star has been transformed into a small planet made of diamond, researchers led by Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne have found.

The researchers first detected a pulsar using the Parkes radio telescope of the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).

The newly discovered pulsar, known as PSR J1719–1438, produced pulses that were systematically modulated. The astronomers concluded that this… read more

Nanotechnology, Nanomedicine and Nanosurgery

January 10, 2006

Nanomedicine pioneer Robert A. Freitas Jr. has written a landmark paper on nanosurgery in a peer-reviewed medical journal (“Nanotechnology, Nanomedicine and Nanosurgery,” Intl. J. Surgery 3, December 2005:1-4).

Freitas describes current state-of-the-art surgery using a micropipette to completely cut dendrites from single neurons without damaging cell viability, localized nanosurgical ablation of focal adhesions adjoining live mammalian epithelial cells, microtubule dissection inside yeast cells, and even nanosurgery of… read more

As nanotechnology goes mainstream, ‘toxic socks’ raise concerns

April 8, 2008

Ordinary laundering can wash off substantial amounts of nanosilver particles from socks impregnated with the material, Arizona State researchers suggest.

The particles, intended to prevent foot odor, could travel through a wastewater treatment system and enter natural waterways where they might have unwanted effects on aquatic organisms living in the water and possibly humans, too, they say.

Nanotech improves disease detection

March 28, 2003

Nanotechnology could improve medical diagnostics vastly within the next two or three years, say Emory University researchers.

Researchers are developing diagnostic tests for cancer and cardiovascular diseases based on light emission in the presence of specific disease markers. A nanostructure could also recognize a cancer cell, bind to it, and trigger a release of a therapeutic drug.

Detecting Light with Graphene

October 13, 2009

New IBM research suggests that graphene sheets could be used to make ultrafast photodetectors for future optical communications networks with data rates beyond 40 gigabits per second (vs. the current 10 gigabits per second), for optical computers, and as a better detector for terahertz radiation, which has shown promise for medical and security imaging.

Nanostructured gel muscles in on the action

January 19, 2006

Researchers have created a nanostructured gel that can act as a synthetic muscle. The material reacts to chemical changes in its environment by expanding or contracting.

The gel consists of a polyacid matrix containing nanoscopic hydrophobic domains. The material is formed by self-assembly from a triblock copolymer.

Testing the synthetic muscle by using it to bend a soft cantilever revealed that it produced a power per unit mass… read more

Ten weirdest computers

April 14, 2008

Weird computers have included neurons (a few brain cells from a lamprey, a primitive eel-like vertebrate can be used to control a robot), “gloopware” (interfering waves of propagating ions in a chemical goo behave like a logic gate), slime mold (can work out the shortest route through a maze), and logic circuits that use cascades of atoms bouncing off each other like billiard balls to pass information along their length.

Will Genetic Engineering Kill Us?

April 16, 2003

“Bioethicists and scientists contemplating the future fear that genetic engineering and other technologies are going to divide human beings into classes that may one day try to destroy one another.”

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