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Buckyballs Make Fantastic Voyage

August 2, 2001

Fullerenes (a.k.a. Buckyballs — molecules containing 60 carbon atoms arranged in a sphere with a hollow center) are becoming an ideal platform for delivering drugs for diseases such as HIV, Lou Gehrig’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
C Sixty, which is developing products using fullerenes, also sees them being used for delivering bone-building drugs for osteoporosis and eventually for carrying cancer-killing drugs to tumor cells.

“Buckyballs will undoubtedly… read more

Researchers Generate Functional Neurons From Engineered Stem Cells

February 25, 2009

UCLA researchers have generated functionally mature motor neurons from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. The process be a boon to research into conditions such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and spinal cord injury, and could open the door to eventual treatments.

UC-Santa Cruz to put novelist Robert Heinlein’s archive online

September 21, 2007

The entire contents of the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Archive — housed in the UC-Santa Cruz Library’s Special Collections since 1968 — have been scanned in an effort to preserve the contents digitally while making the collection easily available to both academics and the general public.

Mouse brain cells rapidly recover after Alzheimer’s plaques are cleared

January 21, 2005

Washington University School of Medicine researchers found that brain cells in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease can recuperate after the disorder’s characteristic brain plaques are removed.

Researchers injected mice with an antibody for a key component of brain plaques, the amyloid beta (Abeta) peptide. In areas of the brain where antibodies cleared plaques, many of the swellings previously observed on nerve cell branches rapidly disappeared. The new results… read more

US to offer plethora of prize competitions to solve tough problems

December 23, 2010

The America Competes Act, renewed by Congress this week, now gives every federal department and agency the authority to conduct prize competitions.

According to the Office of Science and Technology Policy blog: “Whether it’s developing new products that will be manufactured in America, or getting and using energy more sustainably, or improving health care with better therapies and better use of information technology, or providing better protection for our troops… read more

Man-beast hybrid beyond talking stage

August 22, 2001

The idea of combining the DNA of animals and humans has gone beyond the talking stage — it’s been attempted.
The first publicized case of animal-human hybrids took place in 1996 when Jose Cibelli, a scientist at the University of Massachusetts, took DNA from his white blood cells by swabbing the inside of his cheek. He then inserted the DNA sample into a hollowed-out cow egg.

Cibelli’s experiment came… read more

Traveling-Wave Reactor

March 3, 2009
(Bryan Christie Design)

Scientists at Intellectual Ventures have designed a “traveling­-wave” reactor that requires only a small amount of enriched uranium fuel and runs for decades without refueling and reprocessing, with their risks of nuclear-weapons proliferation and environmental pollution.

Webcams Transport Virtual Visitors

February 3, 2005

“Video chatting” is getting easier and more popular thanks to a growing number of service providers, fast broadband connections, and new cameras.

Using lightweight portable minicameras mounted on computer screens, people can see and be seen by friends or virtual strangers who are invited into the home to talk and take a look around.

CES 2011: What to Expect

December 31, 2010

Tablets, smart appliances, 3D, robots, candy tech and more will mark 2011′s massive Consumer Electronics show in Las Vegas.

Supercomputer Simulations Reveal Strongest Carbon Nanotubes

September 20, 2001

A team of researchers has used computer simulations to discover carbon fibers with mechanical strength comparable to that of diamond. In a paper published in Physical Review Letters, Crespi, graduate student Dragan Stojkovic, and recent Ph.D. graduate Peihong Zhang report that they discovered incredibly strong and stiff carbon tubes about 0.4 nanometers in diameter.

Using supercomputers at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), the University of Michigan, and the… read more

NASA-Cisco climate project to flash ‘Planetary Skin’

March 9, 2009

NASA Ames and Cisco Systems Inc. are developing “Planetary Skin” — a marriage of satellites, land sensors and the Internet — to capture, analyze and interpret global environmental data, using a comprehensive sensor network in rainforests around the world.

The goal: translate the data into information that governments and businesses can use to mitigate and adapt to climate change and manage energy and natural resources more effectively.

Free the Avatars

October 10, 2007

At the Virtual Worlds Conference and Expo at San Jose, Calif., IBM and Linden Lab are announcing plans to develop open standards that will allow avatars to roam from one virtual community to the next.

The goal is let a person create a digital alter-ego that can travel to many virtual worlds, keeping the same name, look and even digital currency, “a truly interoperable 3D Internet.”

Math skills evolved independent of language

February 16, 2005

A study of people with language difficulties suggests that mathematical skill evolved independently of language.

Researchers studied three people with extensive damage to the brain’s left hemisphere, including language areas. All were competent calculators, though, able to solve simple subtraction, division and multiplication problems

A fat tummy shrivels your brain

January 10, 2011

Obese individuals had more water in the amygdala,  a part of the brain involved in eating behavior, Antonio Convit at the New York University School of Medicine found in an fMRI study.  He also saw smaller orbitofrontal cortices in obese individuals, important for impulse control and also involved in feeding behavior .

“It could mean that there are less neurons, or that those neurons are shrunken,” says… read more

Citizen to commercialize IBM’s wristwatch computer

October 12, 2001

IBM’s wristwatch PC, a first step in the development of wearable computers, will be available as a product from Citizen Watch Co.IBM’s Watchpad prototype weighs 43 grams and includes a 32-bit microprocessor running Linux version 2.4, backed by 8 Mbytes of DRAM and 16 Mbytes of flash. The Citizen product will include 320 x 240-dot monochrome VGA display, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, an IrDA wireless link, plus speaker, microphone and fingerprint-sensor… read more

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