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First fully operational life-size hummingbird-like unmanned aircraft

February 21, 2011

Nano Air Vehicle (

AeroVironment, Inc. has announced controlled precision hovering and fast-forward flight of a two-wing, “hummingbird-like” flapping wing aircraft that carries its own energy source, and uses only flapping wings for propulsion and control.

(Videos)

Developed for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the final concept demonstrator is called the “Nano Hummingbird” and is capable of climbing and descending vertically, flying sideways left and right, flying forward and… read more

Open-Source Biology Evolves

January 18, 2005

The Biological Innovation for Open Society, or BIOS, will soon launch an open-source platform that promises to free up rights to patented DNA sequences and the methods needed to manipulate biological material.

Just like open-source software, open-source biology users own the patents to their creations, but cannot hinder others from using the original shared information to develop similar products. Any improvements of the shared methods of BIOS, the Science… read more

NASA Aircraft Enlisted to Fight Wildfires

October 29, 2007

NASA’s Ikhana took off Wednesday morning from Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., on a 10-hour mission to observe seven wildfires still raging in the southern part of the state, using an onboard visible and near- and far-IR sensors to collect data, process it into images, and send those via satellite to firefighting command centers in real time.

That means it can see in the dark and cut through a… read more

Virtual clones take over SIGGRAPH

August 16, 2001

LOS ANGELES – What’s missing from Web sites is personality. That’s about to change.Pulse is previewing software for creating photoreal, 3D characters for use on Web sites. You can build a virtual character in just five minutes by taking a digital photo of a face, converting to a 3D model, and adding voice or text-to-speech for lip-synching, as we confirmed in a demo.

Uses include email, instant… read more

The Civil Heretic

March 26, 2009

Physicist Freeman Dyson dismisses the threat of global warming — an ultimately benign occurrence in what Dyson says is still “a relatively cool period in the earth’s history.”

Rising carbon-dioxide levels in the atmosphere are a sign that “the climate is actually improving rather than getting worse,” because carbon acts as an ideal fertilizer promoting forest growth and crop yields.

If needed, carbon-eating trees could be genetically engineered… read more

Brain ‘avalanches’ may help store memories

January 27, 2005

Recent studies suggest that avalanches in your brain could actually help you to store memories.

Slices of rat brain tissue placed on a microelectrode array have shown that the brain cells activate each other in cascades called “neuronal avalanches.” New computer models by Indiana University biophysicist John Beggs now suggest that these brain avalanches may be optimal for information storage. If so, certain neurochemical treatments might someday improve life… read more

Appetite Regulation Molecule Found

November 8, 2007

Researchers from the Centre for Immunology at St Vincent’s Hospital of Sydney, the University of New South Wales, and the Garvan Institute of Medical Research have developed a novel way to control the extreme weight loss common in late stage cancer, giving people the strength to survive treatment and improve their chances of recovery.

They found that most common cancers produce large amounts of a molecule known as MIC-1,… read more

Researchers tout touchy-feely technology

September 8, 2001

Haptic technology — computer hardware and software that simulates humans’ sense of touch and feel through tactile vibrations or force feedback — may soon become a mainstream computing phenomenon.
Uses of haptics include virtual-patient simulators for medical training, online shopping (shoppers will be able to “feel” a product), computer games, Web browsers (vibrations when a person scrolls over a hypertext link), molecular modeling, and adding the sense of touch to… read more

HUMOR | Google announces Cognitive Autoheuristic Distributed-Intelligence Entity

April 1, 2009

Source: KurzweilAI — April 1, 2009

Google announced at midnight the world’s first Cognitive Autoheuristic Distributed-Intelligence Entity (CADIE), the first evolving intelligent system.

“im a girl, 2 minutes old, just hanging out in da C.A. learnin a lot tryin 2 get smarter make friends save humanity etc etc. i like cmputrs (duh) sunsets rainbows ponies and after 1 netwide image search PANDAS PANDAS PANDAS ther SO CUTE!!! omg!,” said CADIE.… read more

Artificial, cell-Like ‘honey pots’ entrap deadly viruses

March 6, 2011

Synthetic Protocells

Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Weill Cornell Medical College have designed artificial “protocells” that can lure, entrap and inactivate a class of deadly human viruses.

The technique offers a new research tool that can be used to study in detail the mechanism by which viruses attack cells, and might even become the basis for a new class of antiviral drugs.

“We… read more

Open-Source Practices for Biotechnology

February 11, 2005

Researchers from Australia have devised a method of creating genetically modified crops that does not infringe on patents held by big biotechnology companies.

The people behind the new technology-sharing initiative, called the Biological Innovation for Open Society, or BIOS, say that patents covering the basic tools for genetically engineering plants – which are controlled by companies like Monsanto, Syngenta and Bayer CropScience – have impeded the use of biotechnology… read more

Robot love: South Korea to build robot theme parks

November 14, 2007

South Korea officials today said they hope to build two robot theme parks for $1.6 billion by 2013, saying they consider robotics to be one of South Korea’s key growth industries, emphasizing “service robots” that can clean homes and offer up entertainment.

Newsweek Cover: ‘How Scared Should You Be?’

October 1, 2001

The U.S. Department of Energy will test an early warning system for toxic chemicals in subway systems, and detectors have already been secretly installed in a Washington D.C. Metro station, Newsweek has learned, though nationwide implementation is years away. The DoE is also launching a project to install biodetectors in stadiums, convention halls and other large areas, all part of a multi-billion dollar effort to thwart biological and chemical attacks,… read more

Science’s most powerful computer tackles first questions

April 9, 2009

The first research projects for the Jaguar supercomputer (at 1.64 petaflops, second only to the 1.7 petaflop Roadrunner), located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, are focused on 21 environmental issues, such as climate models and synthesizing biofuels from waste plant material.

High-intensity ultrasound creates hollow nanospheres and nanocrystals

February 23, 2005

Using high-intensity ultrasound, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have created hollow nanospheres and the first hollow nanocrystals.

The nanospheres could be used in microelectronics, drug delivery and as catalysts for making environmentally friendly fuels.

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign news release

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