science + technology news

DARPA seeks teams for eight-week imagery data analysis study

July 12, 2012

DARPA_Innovation_house

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) seeks teams to explore new visual and geospatial data analysis methods in its Innovation House Study, with up to $50,000 funding.

Researchers will participate in a short-fuse, crucible-style environment to invent new approaches to the identification of people, places, things and activities from still or moving defense and open-source imagery.

“A lot can happen when you put… read more

Information Wants to be Liquid

January 26, 2005

The Liquid Information project wants to tear down the web and rebuild it in the image of Wikipedia: a free-for-all where readers are writers and no word is sacrosanct.

What is Traitorware?

December 28, 2010

Your digital camera may embed metadata into photographs with the camera’s serial number or your location. Your printer may be incorporating a secret code on every page it prints which could be used to identify the printer and potentially the person who used it. If Apple puts a particularly creepy patent it has recently applied for into use, you can look forward to a day when… read more

Complexity science: next big thing

September 4, 2001

The next big thing will be complexity science, the study of how order inevitability emerges from chaos, says Internet pioneer Jim Rutt. Rutt is interested in applying the theories of complexity science to develop computers, systems and software that will independently think and learn.

“When Ray Kurzweil wrote ‘Spiritual Age of Machines,’ I thought he was nuts,” Rutt said. “But now, I’m convinced that he is definitely onto something.… read more

Scientists Create Light-Bending Nanoparticles

March 4, 2009

Rice University researchers discovered that Cup-shaped gold nanostructures can bend light in a controllable way, acting like three-dimensional nano-antennas, Rice University researchers have discovered.

This property should prove useful in developing new optical materials and devices, such as solar cells, light attenuators, and chip-to-chip optical interconnects.

Can We Live to Be 1,000?

February 9, 2005

Recent advances in our understanding of aging may allow today’s sixtysomethings to reach their 1,000th birthdays, says Cambridge University scientist Aubrey de Grey.

Inventing the Robotic Soldier

October 1, 2001
Patent 6,289,263

A small armored sphere rolls swiftly across a craggy landscape. It comes to a sudden stop, perching on three telescoping legs and sprouting a long neck with an eye that can swivel around 360 degrees. The enemy opens fire, but bullets merely ricochet off the sphere’s exoskeleton as from yet another opening there emerges a gun, which — sensing heat and motion — takes aim and fires…

Such… read more

Unveiling the “Sixth Sense,” game-changing wearable tech

March 11, 2009

TED has just released the video of MIT scientists Pattie Maes & Pranav Mistry unveiling their “Sixth Sense,” a wearable device with a projector, as in Minority Report — the buzz of TED.

Invisibility Made Easier

October 15, 2007
Anthony Hoffman, Princeton University

Princeton University researchers have demonstrated a new way to create metamaterials that bend light in unusual ways.

The new proces allows for metamaterials that are both higher performing and much easier to manufacture, perhaps bringing these applications closer to reality.

Single-molecule switch opens the door to biomolecular electronics

February 22, 2005

Scientists from the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University have created the first reproducible single molecule negative differential resistor and in the process have developed a groundbreaking experimental technique that provides a “roadmap” for designing single-molecule devices based on biochemistry.

Arizona State University news release

Blood vessels for lab-grown tissues

January 12, 2011

Researchers from Rice University and Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) have broken one of the major roadblocks on the path to growing transplantable tissue in the lab: They’ve found a way to grow the blood vessels and capillaries needed to keep tissues alive.

The new research is available online and due to appear in the January issue of the journal Acta Biomaterialia.

“The inability to grow blood-vessel networks –… read more

Entrepreneurs Respond to Fearful Times

October 26, 2001

Tinkerers and entrepreneurs have found a new source of inspiration: fear of terrorism.
New products beginning to hit the market include fish tanks transformed into special glass boxes for opening suspicious mail, a home anthrax-testing kit, powered parachutes for people who live and work in high-rises, a sealed glass case for people to open their mail in, flavored syrups that can be used to cover up the bitter taste of… read more

Robot Plays Follows the Leader

March 17, 2009

Image-recognition software and an infrared camera developed at Brown University let a robot follow people in different environments.

India to host world toilet summit

October 25, 2007

Health and sanitation experts from 40 countries will meet in New Delhi later this month to find ways to provide toilets for everyone by 2025.

An estimated 2.6 billion people have no access to a proper toilet, according to the World Health Organization. More than half live in India or China.

How Many Variables Can Humans Process?

March 9, 2005

People cannot process more than four variables at a time, new research shows.

Recognizing these human limitations can make a difference when designing high-stress work environments — such as air-traffic control centers — where employees must keep in mind several variables all at once.

American Psychological Society news release

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