science + technology news

A Clearer Picture of Cancer

November 24, 2008

A new 3-D near-infrared imaging system that uses an ultrafast camera and femtosecond laser to capture unscattered light has been developed by researchers at the Institute for Biological and Medical Imaging at the Helmholtz Center and Northeastern University.

It’s been used to create richer, higher-resolution images of the molecular workings of lung cancer in mice, and with further development, it might be used to study disease in thicker tissues… read more

Dawn of the Ultra Mobile PC

May 31, 2007

Ready or not, here come the ‘tweeners. Palm’s Foleo (a just-announced ultracompact portable computer and smartphone adjunct) is just the latest evidence that the electronics industry is determined to create a new category of mobile computing devices.

Neptune-Class Worlds Found

September 1, 2004

Astronomers using telescopes in Hawaii, California and Texas have found the first Neptune-size planets outside our solar system, far smaller than any planets previously detected.

The near simultaneous discovery of these smallest-yet planets indicates they could be common, said Geoff Marcy, a planet hunter from UC Berkeley.

Green machine: Squeezing solar juice from jellyfish

September 9, 2010

Swedish researchers are developing a photovoltaic device based on green fluorescent protein (GFP) from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria.

The team deposit two aluminium electrodes with a tiny gap between them onto a silicon dioxide substrate. A droplet of green fluorescent protein is then added on top, whereupon the protein assembles itself into strands between the electrodes. When exposed to ultraviolet light, the GFP absorbs photons and emits… read more

Molecular fireworks could produce ’30-minute genomes’

December 2, 2008

Pacific BioSciences says that by 2013, it could sequence a person’s entire genome in half an hour with 99.999 per cent accuracy for under $1000.

The new technique involves attaching a different coloured fluorescent dye to each of the four types of nucleotide and watching these flash as they are incorporated into the strand (see diagram). The sequence of coloured flashes in this molecular fireworks display indicates the order… read more

A Wirelessly Powered Lightbulb

June 8, 2007

Researchers at MIT have shown that it’s possible to wirelessly power a 60-watt lightbulb sitting about two meters away from a power source.

Using a remarkably simple setup–basically consisting of two metal coils using resonant coupling–they have demonstrated, for the first time, that it is feasible to efficiently send that much power over such a distance. The experiment paves the way for wirelessly charging batteries in laptops, mobile phones,… read more

3D-printed circuit boards for solder-free printable electronics

May 7, 2012


Given the schematic for a simple circuit, here’s how to make it a real circuit with the base components, some conductive thread, and a 3D printer — no solder, no etching chemicals, no sending away for anything, Instructables explains in a how-to tutorial.

“We are entering an age where physical goods increasingly have a digital representation (e.g., — and the means of production of such goods are… read more

Nanotechnology-based data storage on rise

September 10, 2004

Nanotechnology could yield billions of dollars of new data storage devices, based on exotic technologies, in just the next few years, with vastly larger memory and faster response times.

Experts predict a growth in the global market for such nano-based storage from $97 million in 2004 to $17.9 billion by 2008 and $65.7 billion by 2011.

Program For The Future explores collective intelligence

December 8, 2008

Program for the Future: A Summit & Workshop on Collective Intelligence, to be held December 8th – 9th
conference at the Tech Museum of Innovation, Adobe and Stanford University, aims to discover the best new Collective Intelligence tools through a global competition and enhance our capability for problem-solving, decision-making and knowledge organization.

The event will also allow for virtual attendance, including an online video stream… read more

How Great Leaders Juggle Ideas

June 18, 2007

Successful leaders process information differently, says Roger Martin, dean of the University of Toronto Business School.

“They have the predisposition and the capacity to hold in their head two opposing ideas at once, and creatively resolve the tension between those two ideas by generating a new one that contains elements of the others but is superior to both.”

He asked several how they recharge their brains when the… read more

Assessing brain function in unconscious, brain-injured patients

May 14, 2012

MRI Head

New functional and imaging-based diagnostic tests that measure communication and signaling between different brain regions may provide valuable information about consciousness in patients unable to communicate.

The new tests, described in an open-access survey article, are functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) combined with electroencephalograpy (EEG), and response to neuronal perturbation, measuring, for example, sensory evoked potentials (ERP).

Disorders of consciousness such as coma… read more

Virus Forms Nano Template

September 24, 2004

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Brown University have showed how self-assembly mechanisms that bring together charged membranes and oppositely charged polymers like biological molecules can be understood in terms of simple rules, and have applied the rules to make virus-membrane complexes with pore sizes that can be used to organize molecules.

These complexes are made from alternating layers of membranes and viruses. They could be… read more

Tiny delivery system with a big impact on cancer cells

December 16, 2008

Penn State medical researchers have found that calcium phosphate nanocomposite particles (CPNPs)encapsulating cancer-killing ceramide (effectively making ceramide soluble), killed 95 percent of human melanoma cells and were “highly effective” against human melanoma and breast cancer cells that are normally resistant to anticancer drugs.

Virus ‘hybrids’ can act as nanoscale memory devices

June 27, 2007

University of California at Riverside researchers have developed a new type of non-volatile memory device made by attaching individual viruses to quantum dots.

The hybrid material could be used to develop biocompatible electronics and offer a cheap and simple way to make high-density memory chips.

In the future, the hybrids “could act like nanomachines or nanorobots built for treating disease,” Mihri Ozkan of the University of California at… read more

Cognitive software captures experts’ performance on flight simulators

May 18, 2012

Debrief Tool With Automated Event Flagging. The debrief tool used in the experiment displays a video replay of the operator console (similar to this map display), and a timeline of events suggested by AEMASE for discussion during debrief. The tool also includes visualizations of entity movement over time. (Credit: S. M. Stevens-Adams et al.)

Navy pilots and other flight specialists soon will have a new “smart machine” installed in training simulators that learns from expert instructors to more efficiently train their students.

Sandia National Laboratories’ Automated Expert Modeling & Student Evaluation (AEMASE, pronounced “amaze”) is being provided to the Navy as a component of flight simulators.

Components are now being used to train Navy personnel to fly H-60 helicopters and… read more

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