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Microsoft to Use Radio Waves on Devices

April 25, 2003

Microsoft Corp. is using FM radio waves to deliver instant messages, headlines and traffic updates to a new generation of gadgets that will fit on your wrist or keychain.

A Better Bug for Biofuels

September 25, 2009

Researchers are developing genetically engineered microbial sources of biofuels that do not rely on food sources or agricultural land, unlike ethanol made from corn or sugarcane.

How to control heartbeats more precisely, using light

October 20, 2015

Using computer-generated light patterns, researchers were able to control the direction of spiralling electrical waves in heart cells. (credit: Eana Park)

Researchers from Oxford and Stony Brook universities has found a way to precisely control the electrical waves that regulate the rhythm of our heartbeat — using light. Their results are published in the journal Nature Photonics.

Cardiac cells in the heart and neurons in the brain communicate by electrical signals, and these messages of communication travel fast from cell to cell as “excitation waves.”… read more

Internet addiction is a psychiatric disorder

April 3, 2008

In the American Journal of Psychiatry, psychiatrist Jerald Block argues that internet addiction should be included in the next version of DSM, the US handbook of recognised psychiatric conditions.

The condition is characterized by excessive use of the Internet, anger or depression if computer access is lost, poor achievement and social isolation.

US group implants electronic tags in workers

February 12, 2006

An Ohio company has embedded RFID chips in two of its employees — the first known case in which US workers have been “tagged” electronically as a way of identifying them.

CityWatcher.com, a private video surveillance company, said it was testing the technology as a way of controlling access to a room where it holds security video footage for government agencies and the police.

Lab tests tenets’ limits

May 6, 2003

If the fundamental constants of physics change, they do so too slowly for us to detect.

Case in point: Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Boulder, Colorado, have ruled out any change in the fine-structure constant (alpha) greater than between 7×10^-15 and 7×10^-16 per year.

Alpha is a measure of how strongly light interacts with matter. If it has a different value today than… read more

2B: the Era of Flesh Is Over film to premiere at Woodstock Film Festival

October 1, 2009

2B: The Era of Flesh Is Over, a science-fiction film set in the near future, will have its world premiere at the 10th anniversary Woodstock Film Festival in Woodstock, NY on Friday, Oct. 2, 2009.

A panel discussion, “Redesigning Humanity: the New Frontier,” moderated by bioethicist James J. Hughes, including Ray Kurzweil, 2B film executive producer Martine Rothblatt, and author Wendell Wallach and… read more

Rare genetic mutations protect against hypertension

April 7, 2008

Yale University and Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers have found that rare genetic variants can be associated with a dramatically lower risk of developing high blood pressure.

High blood pressure is a condition that affects a billion people worldwide and contributes significantly to heart and kidney disease, and stroke. About 100 million people worldwide carrying the mutations are protected from high blood pressure.

That rare mutations may collectively… read more

Quantum computer works best switched off

February 23, 2006

A quantum computer program has produced an answer without actually running.

My Son, the Robot

May 18, 2003

Will technology end human life as we know it? Yes, says Bill McKibben in his new book Enough (a warning about the dangers of genetic engineering, robotics, and nanotechnology).

But the book has flaws that make it unresonant: it’s sophomoric, unoriginal, naive about genetic determinism, and “takes it for granted that we are at an inflection point of history, suspended between the prehistoric and the Promethean,” according to the… read more

Foresight Institute Announces Feynman Prize Winners

October 8, 2009

The Foresight Institute has announced winners of the 2009 Feynman Prizes in Nanotechnology.

The winner of the 2009 Feynman Prize for Theory is Robert A. Freitas Jr., in recognition of his pioneering theoretical work in mechanosynthesis, in which he proposed specific molecular tools and analyzed them using ab initio quantum chemistry to validate their ability to build complex molecular structures. This Prize also recognizes his previous work in systems… read more

Dorgan: Study on oil potential in Bakken formation to be released

April 9, 2008

Sen. Byron Dorgan says the U.S. Geological Survey is slated to release a study Thursday on the oil potential of the area known as the Bakken formation in North Dakota, Montana, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.

In 1995, the Geological Survey estimated the amount of recoverable oil in the Bakken at 151 million barrels. Dorgan says technology has come far since then.

Spintronics may save Moore’s Law

March 10, 2006

The Western Institute of Nanoelectronics is being established with grants of $18.2 million, largely from semiconductor companies with an interest in breakthroughs in spintronics, which holds promise in minimizing power consumption for next-generation consumer electronics.

Stanford’s free ‘Intro to AI’ course

August 4, 2011

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Stanford University’s CS221: Introduction to Artificial Intelligence Fall quarter 2011 is now available,¬†for free, Stanford has announced.

You can take this online course from professors Sebastian Thrun and Peter Norvig, along with several hundred Stanford undergrads, without having to fill out an application, pay tuition, or live in a dorm.

This is more than just downloading materials and following along with a live stream; you’re… read more

Nano-coated implants cut MRI scan dangers

June 2, 2003

Biophan has developed a coating for pacemaker implants made from nanoparticles that reflect most of frequencies of MRI radio waves. The coating also prevents high currents from flowing around the implant’s surface and heating nearby body tissues. The technology should protect such patients from life-threatening MRI scanner fields.

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