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Big step in tiny technology

August 28, 2008
(Manfred Buck)

University of St Andrews researchers have developed a method of creating self-assembling nanostructures just one molecule thick — no sophisticated equipment or special environment (such as a high vacuum) required — as an alternative to conventional lithography, which is imprecise on a scale of a few nanometers.

The solution-based chemistry method assembles molecules into tiny dimples, themselves created when molecules self-assemble into a honeycomb-shaped network on a… read more

Pandemic flu may be only two mutations away

February 2, 2007

A new study investigating the difference between the 1918 pandemic flu virus – which killed at least 50 million people — and a virus which kills but does not spread turned out to be two small mutations on the virus’ surface.

Just two amino acids need to change on the virus’s surface in order to allow it to spread easily between people, the researchers found.

Smartphone training helps people with memory impairment regain independence

February 9, 2012

Baycrest  neuropsychologists have found that a smartphone training program, theory-driven and specifically designed for individuals with memory impairment, can result in “robust” improvements in day-to-day functioning, and boost independence and confidence levels.

“The goal of our study was to demonstrate the generalizability of our training protocol to a larger number of individuals with moderate-to-severe memory impairment,” said Dr. Eva Svoboda, a clinical neuropsychologist in the Neuropsychology… read more

Adult stem cell transplants fail in 2 studies

March 23, 2004

Two failed attempts to transplant adult stem cells into the hearts of laboratory mice are casting doubt on the value and safety of clinical trials testing a similar approach to repair the hearts of humans.

Research links pesticides with ADHD in children

May 17, 2010

A new analysis of U.S. health data, published Monday in Pediatrics, links children’s attention-deficit disorder with exposure to common pesticides used on fruits and vegetables.

“Exposure is practically ubiquitous. We’re all exposed,” said lead author Maryse Bouchard of the University of Montreal.

The study provides more evidence that the government should encourage farmers to switch to organic methods, said Margaret Reeves, senior scientist with the Pesticide Action Network.… read more

B-vitamin Deficiency May Cause Vascular Cognitive Impairment

September 3, 2008

Deficiency of folate, B12 and B6- caused cognitive dysfunction and reductions in brain capillary length and density in mice, according to a Tufts University study.

Intel Prototype May Herald a New Age of Processing

February 12, 2007
Teraflop Chip (Intel)

Intel will demonstrate on Monday an experimental computer “Teraflop Chip” with 80 separate processing engines, or cores, that company executives say provides a model for commercial chips that will be used widely in standard desktop, laptop and server computers within five years.

Such computing power matches the performance speed of the world’s fastest supercomputer of just a decade ago.

For example, it could make it possible… read more

Moore’s Second Law

April 5, 2004

The biggest impediment to our technological future isn’t extending Moore’s law; it’s system efficiency.

We need to improve system layouts and cooling techniques, create better interconnects, reduce sloppy software code, eschew processors that are faster than necessary, and build better batteries.

Moore’s second law could be formulated: “Overall net efficiency of any electronic system will double every 24 months.”

Allen Institute for Brain Science launches Allen Human Brain Atlas

May 25, 2010

The Allen Institute for Brain Science has launched the Allen Human Brain Atlas, a publicly available online atlas charting genes at work throughout the human brain.

The data provided in this initial data release represent the most extensive and detailed body of information about gene activity in the human brain to date, documenting which genes are expressed, or “turned on,” where.

The Allen Human Brain Atlas, available at… read more

Google to Digitize Newspaper Archives

September 9, 2008

Google has expanded its microfilm scanning of some newspapers’ historic archives to make them searchable online, first through Google News and eventually on the papers’ own Web sites.

Paranoid androids ‘in 10 years’

February 20, 2007

A panel of robotics experts speaking at the American Association for the Advancement of Science said robots capable of multiple domestic tasks, that can also provide companionship for their owners, will be available within 10 years.

And the scientists claim it is already possible to give robots such “feelings.”

“Emotion plays an important role in guiding attention towards what is important and away from distractions,” said Professor Cynthia… read more

Foiling a ‘malicious manipulator’ of a quantum cryptographic message

February 22, 2012


Quantum cryptography — the ultimate secret message service — can now counter even the ultimate paranoid scenario: when the equipment or even the operator is in the control of a malicious power.

Until now, quantum cryptography protocols have always assumed that an adversary would not have access to information about any choices that are made during the process of encryption.

“We are challenging this assumption,” says Artur… read more

Friend or Foe? A Digital Dog Tag Beams the Answer

April 15, 2004

Using a combination of radio frequency transponders, laser sensors and microwave-like transmitters, the Defense Department hopes to give every allied soldier, tank and plane a unique identifier to distinguish friend from foe.

Surveillance Software Knows What a Camera Sees

June 1, 2010

(Song-Chun Zhu/UCLA)

I2T (Image to Text), a prototype computer vision system that can generate a live text description of what’s happening in a feed from a surveillance camera, has been developed by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles and ObjectVideo of Reston, VA.

It puts a series of computer vision algorithms into a system that takes images or video frames as input, and spits out summaries of what they… read more

Warning sounded on web’s future

September 17, 2008

Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s new World Wide Web Foundation is looking for ways to give websites a label for trustworthiness once they had been proved reliable sources and help people separate rumor from real science.

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