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Robot on the run

June 21, 2002

Scientists running an experiment with “living robots” that think for themselves said they were amazed to find one had escaped from a building and traveled out the parking lot.

“But there’s no need to worry, as although they can escape they are perfectly harmless and won’t be taking over just yet” mused Professor Noel Sharkey of the Magna science centre in Rotherham, South Yorkshire in Australia.

Tiny robots used in surgical procedures

January 13, 2009

Tiny robots that aid surgical procedures and medical checkups currently are the focus of intense research and study, and some already are in practical use.

Hewlett Cites Progress on Quantum Computer

July 1, 2005

Scientists at Hewlett-Packard said Thursday that they had developed a new strategy for designing a quantum computer composed of switches of light beams that could be vastly more powerful than today’s digital electronic computers, which are constructed from transistors.

Would you give up your immortality to ensure the success of a posthuman world?

July 30, 2007

On Wednesday at TransVision 2007, Marvin Minsky puckishly suggested we could solve any population problem by uploading the minds of 10 billion people and running them on a computer that occupies a few cubic meters and costs only a few hundred dollars to run.

Ray Kurzweil claimed that longevity trends are accelerating so fast that the life expectancy will increase more than one year for each year… read more

Scientists build polio virus from scratch

July 16, 2002

Scientists have built the virus that causes polio from scratch in the lab, using only genetic sequence information from public databases and readily available technology. The finding raises the possibility that bioterrorists could use a similar approach to create devasting diseases without having to gain access to protected viral stocks.

Light-speed nanotech: Controlling the nature of graphene

January 22, 2009
(Rensselaer/Shemella)

Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have discovered a new method for controlling the nature of graphene, bringing academia and industry potentially one step closer to realizing the mass production of graphene-based nanoelectronics.

Pro-WikiLeaks cyber army gains strength; thousands join DDoS attacks

December 10, 2010

The retaliatory attacks by pro-WikiLeaks activists are growing in strength as hackers add botnets and thousands of people download an open-source attack tool, security researchers said today.

n recent days, distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks have been launched against several sites, including those belonging to Amazon,MasterCard, PayPal and the Swiss payment transaction firm PostFinance, after each terminated WikiLeaks accounts or pulled the plug on services.

In a new step… read more

New test detects pathogens in minutes

July 19, 2005

A new technique for detecting dangerous pathogens could lead to faster and cheaper diagnosis of disease and prevent food poisoning, say Cornell University researchers.

The team claims their biosensor is accurate enough to identify different strains of disease-causing organisms in a blood sample in just 30 minutes, and at a fraction of the current cost. The researchers hope the test could soon be incorporated into an inexpensive hand-held device… read more

Side-to-side shaking of nanoresonators throws off impurities

August 8, 2007

Tiny vibrating silicon resonators are of intense interest in nanotechnology circles for their potential ability to detect bacteria, viruses, DNA and other biological molecules.

Cornell researchers have demonstrated a new way to make these resonators vibrate side to side and have shown that this can serve a vital function: shaking off extraneous stuff that isn’t supposed to be detected.

Virtual people help bridge digital divide

August 1, 2002

Web-based avatars are being developed in the U.K. as a simplified interface to computer systems that inform citizens about services.

Amazon Kindle E-Book Reader To Get Facelift

January 29, 2009

Amazon is expected to unveil a new version of its Kindle e-book reader in less than two weeks.

‘Smart’ nanoprobes light up disease

August 2, 2005

Rice University’s Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology (CBEN) researchers have developed a quantum dot that is programmed to light up only when activated by specific proteases.

Altered expression of particular proteases is a common hallmark of cancer, atherosclerosis, and many other diseases.

The probe’s design makes use of a technique called “quenching” that involves tethering a gold nanoparticle to the quantum dot to inhibit luminescence. The tether,… read more

Did Life Begin In Space? New Evidence From Comets

August 15, 2007

Recent probes inside comets show it is overwhelmingly likely that life began in space, according to a new paper by Cardiff University Centre for Astrobiology scientists.

They suggest that radioactive elements can keep water in liquid form in comet interiors for millions of years, making them potentially ideal “incubators” for early life. They also point out that the billions of comets in our solar system and across the galaxy… read more

Faster Chips That March to Their Own Improvised Beat

August 22, 2002

Self-timing, or asynchronous microprocessors will lead to improved computer performance, providing faster operations and reduced power consumption and electromagnetic emissions.

Sun Microsytems and Phillips Research are pioneering developments in this area.

How to turn artwork and crafts into robots

July 11, 2012

Hummingbird controller

Almost anything that can be made with paper, paint and cardboard can be animated with an educational robotics kit developed at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute.

No technical experience is necessary to use the kit, but classroom teachers say it fosters interest in technology among students ages 11 and up.

The kit, called Hummingbird, consists of a customized control board along with a variety of lights,… read more

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