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Efforts to Stop Music Piracy Pointless

November 21, 2002

Record industry attempts to stop the swapping of pop music on online networks such as Kazaa will never work.

So says a research paper prepared by Microsoft computer scientists. They believe that the steady spread of file-swapping systems and improvements in their organisation will eventually make them impossible to shut down.

Researchers fashion copper for high-speed computing

February 13, 2008

Georgia Tech researchers have replaced solder with all-copper connections between computer chips and external circuitry, boosting the speed and amount of data that can be sent throughout a computer.

Engineers build DNA ‘nanotowers’ with enzyme tools

October 13, 2005

Duke engineers are creating the tools that will make bio-manufacturing possible at an industrial scale.

“The development of bio-nanotechnological tools and fabrication strategies, as demonstrated here, will ultimately allow the automated study of biology at the molecular scale and will drive our discovery and understanding of the basic molecular machinery that defines life,” said Stefan Zauscher, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and materials science.

They can vertically extend… read more

Digging into our consciousness

May 16, 2011

The root of consciousness is in the brain stem, which is the “hinge point between the body and brain,” rather than the cerebral cortex, as is commonly assumed, says neuroscientist Dr. Antonio Damasio in an interview with the LA Times on his latest book, Self Comes to Mind.

Consciousness is “this ability that we have to look out on the world and grasp it,” and animals have a basic… read more

Provoking Our Inner Stem Cells

July 17, 2009

Fate Therapeutics aims to harness the body’s ability to heal itself by developing drugs that stimulate resident stem cells.

The company began its first clinical trial in May of a novel molecule that could make cord-blood transplants more effective by enhancing the activity of the stem cells that create the blood and the immune system.

Building a Better Cat

December 5, 2002

Hasbro’s FurReal Friends has become one of the season’s hottest toys, subordinating gadgetry to realistic cat attributes (such as fur) and behaviors.

When the cat is first turned on, it “wakes up,” stretching its neck and arching its back. It meows and then begins to monitor six scattered sensors that can tell if it is being touched on the head, neck, back or tail.

It… read more

Artificial Playmates for Autistic Children

February 18, 2008

Northwestern University researchers show that interacting with virtual playmates helps autistic children unlock social aptitudes and skills.

During unsupervised play with typical children, autistic children don’t fill in pauses in conversation, nor do they ask or answer questions in a natural flow. But with a virtual playmate, autistic children begin to do all these things after as little as 20 minutes.

Futurists Pick Top Tech Trends

October 26, 2005

Mobile socialization, disruptive technology in the hybrid car market, growing demand for information-sensing devices that can reduce energy consumption, and an IT revolution in 2006 are among the forecasts by futurists.

Innovation: Is the future of healthcare online?

July 27, 2009

Healthcare is moving online, encouraged by an international coalition of medical and technology companies.

Medical devices from weighing scales to asthma inhalers could soon carry the technology to connect directly to the web, shuttling data between doctors and their patients.

The Origin of Religions, From a Distinctly Darwinian View

December 24, 2002

Dr. David Sloan Wilson of Binghamton University, a renowned evolutionary biologist, argues that the religious impulse evolved early in hominid history because it helped make groups of humans comparatively more cohesive, more cooperative and more fraternal, and thus able to present a formidable front against bands of less organized or unified adversaries.

No Directions Required–Software Smartens Mobile Robots

February 25, 2008

DARPA has completed its three-year Learning Applied to Ground Robots (LAGR) initiative, which awarded each of eight teams of scientists $2 million to $3 million to develop software that would give unmanned vehicles the ability to autonomously learn and navigate irregular off-road terrain.

LAGR has expanded the capacity of a mobile robot to quickly analyze and travel through new environments.

New “Chip” Could Provide Quick Bird Flu Test

November 8, 2005

A new “chip” can test for 11 different influenza strains, including avian flu, in less than a quarter of the time it now takes to diagnose flu in patients.

Samples from suspected human cases of H5N1 are now sent to central laboratories for confirmation, but that takes days. Doctors need to know sooner so they can give patients antiviral drugs within 48 hours to lessen the severity of the… read more

Did dreams of computer utopia cause economic collapse?

May 26, 2011

In Love and Power, aired May 23 in the UK on BBC, British documentarian Adam Curtis links the Objectivist philosophy from the 1950s — which promoted rationality and an individual’s pursuit of happiness — with a belief in the infallibility of computers, which he argues brought about the economic booms of the 1990s as well as the recent catastrophic economic collapse.

The show is the first… read more

Nikon’s Digital Camera is the First with a Projector

August 5, 2009

The Nikon COOLPIX S1000pj is the world’s first camera to feature a built-in projector.

New printing technology for depositing silver at room temperature may lead to electronics advances

July 2, 2015

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Engineers at Oregon State University (OSU) have invented a way to use silver at room temperature for printed electronics, with broad applications in microelectronics, sensors, energy devices, low emissivity coatings and even transparent displays.

Silver offers advantages in electronic devices because of its conductive and other properties. But the process for using it has required high heat and organic stablizers, followed by post-heating treatments that are required… read more

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