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New nano material is far tougher than diamonds

December 5, 2005

Israeli scientists have have discovered a material 40 times harder than diamonds.

Polyyne, a superhard molecular rod, is comprised of acetylene units.

Anticancer siRNA therapy advances, thanks to nanoparticles

March 28, 2008

California Institute of Technology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Ghent University researchers are making progress in developing broadly applicable, nanoparticle-enabled siRNA anticancer therapeutics.

They found that siRNA-containing nanoparticles deliver the siRNA to tumors more effectively when the nanoparticle are targeted to the tumor. They also found that the targeted nanoparticles effectively penetrated lung metastases, did not enter liver cells, and showed little immunotoxicity.

Small pieces… read more

How Vulnerable Is the Internet Now?

February 11, 2003

According to Gartner research director Richard Stiennon, it would not be difficult for an attacker to send spoofed routing tables to poorly configured routers and misdirect traffic across large parts of the Internet. Such an incident would be hard to fix.

Junk DNA may prove invaluable in quest for gene therapies

September 22, 2009

Researchers at the University of Edinburgh have discovered how DNA transposition, in which shifted genes have a significant effect on the behavior of neighboring genes, can enable the immune system to target infection more effectively.

Astronomers see sun-like star with possible planet formation

December 15, 2005

Astronomers have spotted a swirling debris cloud around a sun-like star that may be forming terrestrial planets similar to Earth in a process that could shed light on the birth of the solar system.

The star, located 137 light years away, appears to possess an asteroid belt, a zone where the leftovers of failed planets collide.

Scientists estimate the star is about 30 million years old — about… read more

Live to 150, Can You Do It?

April 1, 2008

Barbara Walters’ new TV special, “Live to Be 150 … Can You Do It?” airs on Tuesday, April 1, at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.

It will feature Ray Kurzweil and other scientists, and interviews with calorie restrictors and guests who have reached at least 100.

Scientists identify blood stem cell

February 25, 2003

Scientists at the Biochip Technology Center at Argonne National Laboratory have discovered monocyte adult stem cells originating in the blood, a finding that could lead to an easily accessible source of cells to treat diseases.

The advantage of the monocyte stem cells over bone marrow adult stem cells is they are easily available and accessible.

Concepts are born in the hippocampus

September 29, 2009

The hippocampus creates and stores concepts and passes this information onto the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, where it is put to use while making decisions, Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging researchers have found from experiments using fMRI scanning.

The 50 Best Robots Ever

December 27, 2005

They’re exploring the deep sea and distant planets. They’re saving lives in the operating room and on the battlefield. They’re transforming factory floors and filmmaking….

Graphene gazing gives glimpse of foundations of universe

April 4, 2008

University of Manchester researchers have found that graphene, the world’s thinnest material (a one-atom-thick gauze of carbon atoms), absorbs a well-defined fraction of visible light, which allows the direct determination of the fine structure constant (approximately 1/137), which defines the interaction between very fast moving electrical charges and electromagnetic waves.

The researchers found the carbon monolayer absorbs 2.3 percent of visible light. The experiments supported by theory show this… read more

Universe as Doughnut: New Data, New Debate

March 11, 2003

Rather than being infinite in all directions, the universe could be radically smaller in one direction; it may be even be shaped like a doughnut. The idea is based on new data produced by NASA’s Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe satellite.

Singularity Summit media page launched

October 5, 2009

The Singularity Summit has launched a media page for uploading videos (including some SS09 sessions), photos, and tweets (#SS09).

In Love With Reality Truly, Madly, Virtually

January 9, 2006

The Canvas virtual reality system is now available to artists for about $3,000. Software is free. All the public needs is a pair of passive stereo glasses ($1) or datagloves ($20).

This is the kind of watershed moment that video art enjoyed in 1965, when portable video recording equipment became available at mass-market prices.

Limited nuclear war would decimate ozone layer

April 8, 2008

Apart from the human devastation, a small-scale nuclear war between India and Pakistan with 100 Hiroshima-sized bombs would destroy much of the ozone layer, leaving the DNA of humans and other organisms at risk of damage from the Sun’s rays, say University of Colorado at Boulder researchers.

Fujitsu Labs applies neural networks to robot learning

March 27, 2003

Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd. has developed a learning system for humanoid robots that uses a dynamically reconfigurable neural network to enable efficient learning of movement and motor coordination.

The technology is based on Central Pattern Generator (CPG) networks, mimicking a function found in earthworms and lampreys that mathematically simulates a neural oscillator. This is combined with a numerical perturbation (NP) method that quantifies the configuration and connection-weight status of the… read more

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