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Mobile phones ‘dumbing down brain power’

July 16, 2007

An over reliance on technology is leading to a dumbing down of the nation’s brain power, according a study.

Amazon to Sell Build-Your-Own Search Engine

December 14, 2005

For a fee of as little as $1 a day, Amazon will provide access to an index of 5 billion Web pages plus the Internet-based tools to create new twists to mine the information warehouse and present findings to an audience.

Promise of intelligent networks

February 25, 2003

Intel researchers are working on ways to make wireless networks organize themselves and manage data traffic levels without any human intervention.

They are working with mesh network systems that can determine the best way to link all the devices they are in contact with, and find the ideal route for the data the devices are swapping.

“There are going to be tens of millions of computers out there… read more

A Review of the Best Robots of 2008

January 12, 2009

Keith Kleiner’s selections of the best robots and robot videos of 2008 include Robotic Soccer, the ultracute NAO robot, and the award-winning I-Sobot, the smallest bipedal robot.

Ultrasound Gets More Portable

November 29, 2010

An image of a fetus at 23 weeks is displayed on Mobisante’s phone-based ultrasound device. (Mobisante)

Computer engineers at Washington University created a prototype that took ultrasound imaging to a new level of mobility and connectivity — they connected an ultrasound probe to a smart phone.

Now Mobisante, a startup awaiting clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,  hopes to begin selling the device next year.

Such a device would be useful for emergency responders, who could scan an injured person to… read more

Womb-on-a-chip may boost IVF successes

July 26, 2007

University of Tokyo scientists are building a microfluidic chip to nurture the first stages of pregnancy.

They hope, eventually, to create a fully automated artificial uterus in which egg and sperm are fed in at one end and an early embryo comes out the other, ready for implanting in a real mother. They say using such a device could improve the success rate of IVF.

2005: The year in biology and medicine

December 26, 2005

Major breakthroughs in 2005 included the publishing of several complete genomes, including a dog called Tasha, the chimpanzee, three human parasites, ancient cave bears, as well as a map of genetic variations called SNPs in the human genome.

The year also saw the world’s first human face transplant by French surgeons, a growing fear of bird flu, fabricated claims of cloned human stem cells, and a robot to carry… read more

Tomorrow’s 5g cell phone

March 9, 2003

“Cognitive radio” will give wireless devices machine-learning capabilities, redefining cell-phone technology.

Predicting politics: Professors model prediction markets

January 20, 2009

Northwestern University researchers have determined that political prediction markets — in which participants buy and sell “contracts” based on who they think will win an election — behave similar to financial markets, except when traders’ partisan feelings get in the way.

Japan team says stem cells made paralysed monkey jump again

December 9, 2010

Japanese researchers said Wednesday they had used induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells to restore partial mobility in a small monkey that had been paralyzed from the neck down by a spinal injury.

The team planted four types of genes into human skin cells to create the iPS cells. After six weeks, the animal had recovered to the level where it was jumping around.

Bioengineers Devise ‘Dimmer Switch’ To Regulate Gene Expression In Mammal Cells

August 2, 2007

Boston University biomedical engineers have created a genetic dimmer switch that can be used to turn on, shut off, or partially activate a gene’s function during expression as proteins.

The switch holds promise for therapeutic applications, and helps advance the field of synthetic biology, which rests on the premise that complex biological systems can be built by arranging components or standard parts, as an electrician would to build an… read more

‘Robot agents’ to help settle disputes

January 8, 2006

The e-Dispute system provides fast online arbitration, mediation and conciliation services to help organizations quickly resolve disputes.

e-Dispute’s online collaboration tools include video, audio, live-chat, e-forum, text and transcript capabilities with full case management, fact assessment, analysis, and weighted issue/interesting variables.

Engineers Create World’s First Transparent Transistor

March 27, 2003

Engineers at Oregon State University have created the world’s first transparent transistor. Transparent transistors could open up a range of applications in consumer electronics, transportation, business and the military. They could improve the quality of liquid crystal displays and could be used in heads-up displays, built into window glass or the windshield of a vehicle.

Carbon-Nanotube Memory that Really Competes

January 27, 2009

Helsinki University of Technology researchers have created a carbon-nanotube based information storage comparable in speed to memory commonly used in memory cards and USB flash drives.

The memory scheme has a write-erase time of 100 nanoseconds, which is about 100,000 times faster than previously reported carbon-nanotube memory, and retains this ability over more than 10,000 write-erase cycles.

‘Wearable robot’ arm improves performance of brain-controlled device

December 15, 2010

Aided by a robotic exoskeleton, a monkey can hit the target faster and more directly (Hatsopoulos, et al. The Journal of Neuroscience)

The performance of a brain-machine interface designed to help paralyzed subjects move objects with their thoughts is improved with the addition of a robotic arm that provides sensory feedback, a new study from the University of Chicago finds.

Devices that translate brain activity into the movement of a computer cursor or an external robotic arm have already proven successful in humans. But in these early systems, vision was the… read more

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