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Safecrackers open up the “deep Web”

September 7, 2005

Glenbrook Networks says it has a way to tunnel far into the “deep Web” and extract Web pages that are largely unreachable by most search engines because they are stored in databases that Web crawlers can’t access.

Walk like this, said the caterpillar to the robot

April 28, 2011


The new generation of search and rescue soft robots can wiggle their way into some tight spaces, but as for speed, not so much.

So Tufts University researchers decided to make their bots imitate caterpillars, some of which have the extraordinary ability to rapidly curl themselves into a wheel and propel themselves away from predators — really fast.

It’s called “ballistic rolling— one of the fastest wheeling… read more

‘Doorways’ discovered in living brain cells

October 24, 2002

Brain cell membranes contain fixed “doorways” that control the entry of molecules into the cell, new research at Duke University shows.

Understanding this process, and how to control it, could one day lead to an entirely new class of treatments for depression, epilepsy, addiction and other neurological disorders; and preventing pathogens, such as viruses, from entering brain cells.

Intel’s Wireless Power Play

June 22, 2009
(Kate Greene)

Intel researchers demonstrated on Thursday an iPod speaker wirelessly powered by magnetic fields produced from a coil a meter away.

The technology could be incorporated into Intel products, such as laptops or other portable devices, for wireless battery charging.

Direct Sequencing Of DNA, RNA Using Novel Technique

February 4, 2008

Institute for Analytical Sciences (Dortmund) scientists have combined spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy to create a method for reading DNA and RNA directly, and have used it to read RNA.

Previous methods for sequencing DNA are highly complex, work indirectly, and require a large sample of genetic material. In contrast, the new technique directly reads the code without chemical agents or detours. It also requires only a single strand… read more

Google to Put Copyright Laws to the Test

September 19, 2005

Pre-Internet copyright laws are about to be tested as Google attempts to scan millions of books and make their text fully searchable on the Internet. TV programs are next.

Fate of Moore’s Law tops ISSCC agenda

November 11, 2002

We have at least another decade of exponential growth of semiconductor integration, Gordon Moore is expected to argue at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference in San Francisco on Feb. 10.

Solar X-rays may create DNA building blocks on Titan

June 29, 2009

Blasting the atmosphere of Saturn’s moon Titan with X-rays can produce adenine, a base component of DNA, a new laboratory study suggests.

When meteoroid impacts deliver water to the moon’s surface, the finding adds to evidence that Titan may be ripe for life.

Researchers reverse bacterial resistance to antibiotics

Based on tested strategic schedule of antibiotic cycling
May 7, 2015

Antibiotic resistance tests: Bacteria are streaked on the dish and on which antibiotic impregnated white disks are placed. Bacteria in the culture on the left are susceptible to the antibiotic in each disk, as shown by the dark, clear rings where bacteria have not grown. Those on the right are fully susceptible to only three of the seven antibiotics tested (credit: Graham Beards/Wikimedia Commons)

Biologist Miriam Barlow of the University of California, Merced, and mathematician Kristina Crona of American University of Washington, DC have found a way to return bacteria to a pre-resistant state to help doctors deal with the growing problem of resistant bacteria. In research published in the open-access journal PLOS ONE, they show how to verify treatment options for a family of 15 antibiotics used to fight… read more

Team Uncovers New Evidence of Recent Human Evolution

February 8, 2008

French and Spanish researchers have found new evidence to support recent evolution in humans: genes for traits such as skin color and stature changed rapidly to allow humans to survive in new habitats.

The team identified 582 genes that have evolved differently in different populations in the past 60,000 years, including a dozen that protect people from obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and other diseases.

Ray Kurzweil deciphers a brave new world

September 30, 2005 reporter Declan McCullagh quizzed Ray Kurzweil in a wide-ranging interview on the implications of the Singularity for society.

Radical physicist flatters computer fans

November 22, 2002

The universe is composed not of particles and waves, but of simple tiny programs, physicist Stephen Wolfram said at COMDEX. “Systems out there in nature are already doing computations as complex as the ones that correspond to human intelligence.”

Solar for Dark Climates

July 8, 2009

A system developed by Cool Energy that produces heat and electricity from the sun could help make solar energy competitive with conventional sources of energy in relatively dark and cold climates.

The system combines a conventional solar water heater with a new Stirling-engine-based generator. In cool months, the solar heater provides hot water and space heating. In warmer months, excess heat is used to drive the Stirling engine and… read more

Researchers discover technique for repairing gene defect that causes spinal muscular atrophy

February 13, 2008

University of Delaware researchers have discovered a technique to repair the defective gene that causes spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), the number-one genetic killer of children under two years old in the US.

With the “targeted gene alteration” technique, the research team replaced the function of the SMA-causing defective SMN1 gene by introducing a small fragment of a similar but non-defective gene’s DNA into a diseased cell, triggering the cell… read more

Behind Artificial Intelligence, a Squadron of Bright Real People

October 14, 2005

The five robots that successfully navigated a 132-mile course in the Nevada desert last weekend demonstrated the re-emergence of artificial intelligence, a technology field that for decades has overpromised and underdelivered.

This leap was possible, in large part, because researchers are moving from an approach that relied principally on logic and rule-based systems to more probability or statistics-oriented software technologies.

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