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“Medicinal” GM Crops Produced

June 4, 2004

Scientists have genetically engineered plants to produce omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, usually found in fish and known to have significant health benefits. Genes for the fatty acids were inserted into a Arabidopsis plant, but could be added to many different plants. British researchers say this could lead to a new generation of food crops able to reduce the risk of heart disease and other medical conditions.

Endometrial stem cells could repair brain cells damaged by Parkinson’s disease

May 7, 2010

Stem cells derived from the endometrium (uterine lining) and transplanted into the brains of laboratory mice with Parkinson’s disease appear to restore functioning of brain cells damaged by the disease, according to a new study by Yale School of Medicine researchers.

Water Found in Extrasolar Planet’s Atmosphere

April 10, 2007

Astronomers have detected water in the atmosphere of a planet outside our solar system for the first time.

The discovery, announced today, means one of the most crucial elements for life as we know it can exist around planets orbiting other stars.

Wind Energy Bumps Into Power Grid’s Limits

August 28, 2008

Expansive dreams about renewable energy from wind power and other sources are bumping up against the reality of a power grid that cannot handle the new demands.

An Energy Department plan to source 20 percent of the nation’s electricity from wind calls for a high-voltage backbone spanning the country, but it would cost $60 billion or more and would be contrained by multistate regulatory restrictions.

Strange food for thought

June 17, 2004

The brain-gain revolution is already under way. But will these “neural enhancement” drugs turn us into Einsteins or Frankensteins?

The real world of Second Life

May 17, 2010

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Life 2.0, a documentary about the real physical lives of Second Lifers, focuses on the people behind the avatars.

Robot wars

April 19, 2007

The US Department of Defense wants to replace a third of its armed vehicles and weaponry with robots by 2015.

‘Invisibility Cloak’ Undone

September 3, 2008

Chinese scientists have proposed a theoretical “anti-cloak” that would partially cancel the effect of an invisibility cloak.

Holograms enable pocket projectors

July 2, 2004

Researchers from the University of Cambridge and Light Blue Optics Ltd. have used holographic technology to produce a small laser-driven video projector.

The method could lead to pocket-sized, battery-powered video projectors that produce images whose quality matches that of today’s full-sized projectors,

On the Way: 3-D Smartphones and Tablets

February 15, 2011

At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week, several hardware manufacturers are showing off interactive touchscreens capable of displaying 3-D effects that are visible without the aid of special eyewear.

Quantum leap: World’s smallest transistor built with just 7 atoms

May 25, 2010

Template of the quantum dot device showing a central hole where seven phosphorus atoms are incorporated.

The world’s smallest precision-built transistor — a quantum dot of just seven phosphorus atoms in a single silicon crystal — has been created by scientists from the UNSW Centre for Quantum Computer Technology and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

At present, the length of a commercial transistor gate is about 40 nanometers (billionths of a metet). The new device has features about 10 times smaller at 4 nanometers.

First DARPA prosthetic limb comes with virtual reality training

April 27, 2007

An international team led by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory has developed a prototype of the first fully integrated prosthetic arm that can be controlled naturally, provide sensory feedback, and allow for eight degrees of freedom.

Proto 1, developed for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Revolutionizing Prosthetics Program, is a complete limb system that also includes a virtual environment used for patient training, clinical configuration,… read more

Gender differences seen in brain connections

September 9, 2008

Variations in the density of the synapses that connect neurons in the left temporal cortex (a region of the brain involved in emotional and social processing), and possibly other regions, may help explain differences in how men and women think, neuroscientists at Complutense University in Madrid suggest.

Hawking cracks black hole paradox

July 15, 2004

After nearly 30 years of arguing that a black hole destroys everything that falls into it, Stephen Hawking is saying he was wrong. It seems that black holes may after all allow information within them to escape.

It might solve one of the long-standing puzzles in modern physics, known as the black hole information paradox. In 1976, he calculated that once a black hole forms, it starts losing mass… read more

Can Asus take on iPad with Eee Pad, Eee Tablet?

June 1, 2010

ASUS Eee Tablet

Asus introduced on Monday at the Computex show in Taipei two new Windows 7-based tablet computers, designed to compete with Apple’s iPad: the Eee Pad (a keyboard-less laptop with Intel ULV Core 2 Duo processor in 10 and 12 inch verions) and the Eee Tablet (a hybrid e-book/entertainment/note-taking device with webcam and stylus),

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