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Two New Apps Superimpose Wikipedia Over Your iPhone Camera View of the World

October 5, 2009

Two new apps with Wikipedia entries about physical locations that you can view through your iPhone 3GS camera are now available, using the phone’s GPS and compass features.

Wikitude allows anyone to add notes on locations.

Overcoming limits to chip miniaturization

January 20, 2004

Researchers have identified a new origin of the “size effect” (materials lose their useful properties when their dimensions fall below a certain limit), at least for ferroelectric oxides: tiny linear crystal-lattice defects less than about a tenth of nanometer that can deform a tube of material.

RAM memory could be significantly improved if it were possible to construct non-volatile memory cells with a storage density of several billion bits… read more

A biocompatible shape-changing material controlled by patterns and heat

Can be used as cell-culture substrates or implantable materials that contract and expand
December 12, 2013

A two-layer material designed to morph into a specific shape when heated to a specific temperature range.

The materials created by Rice University polymer scientist Rafael Verduzco and his colleagues start as flat slabs, but morph magically into shapes that can be controlled by patterns that were formed into their layers.

Materials that can change their shape based on environmental conditions are useful for optics, three-dimensional biological scaffolds, and controlled encapsulation and release of drugs, among other applications, according to the researchers.… read more

Transplanted cells could ‘catch’ Parkinson’s

April 8, 2008

Perplexing new studies from Rush University Medical Center and Wallenberg Neuroscience researchers suggest cells transplanted into the brains of people with Parkinson’s disease (to produce dopamine) “catch” the disorder from the surrounding tissue.

They studied brains of three people who’d received grafts between 11 and 16 years before death. Some cells in the grafts contained structures called Lewy bodies, a hallmark sign of the disease. Most grafted neurons were… read more

Computers ‘could store entire life by 2026′

December 15, 2006

A device the size of a sugar cube will be able to record and store high resolution video footage of every second of a human life within two decades, according to speakers at the Memories for Life conference at the British Library.

Also see: Memories for life: a review of the science and technology, J. R. Soc. Interface (2006) 3, 351-365

Seeing the world with new eyes: Biosynthetic corneas restore vision in humans

August 26, 2010

A new study from researchers in Canada and Sweden has shown that biosynthetic corneas can help regenerate and repair damaged eye tissue and improve vision in humans.

They initiated a clinical trial in 10 Swedish patients with advanced keratoconus or central corneal scarring. Each patient underwent surgery on one eye to remove damaged corneal tissue and replace it with the biosynthetic cornea, made from synthetically cross-linked recombinant human collagen.… read more

Growing geodesic carbon nanodomes

October 12, 2009


Graphene sheets of carbon growing on a surface of iridium grow by first forming tiny carbon domes, researchers in Italy, the UK and USA have discovered, pointing the way to possible methods for assembling components of graphene-based computer circuits, replacing silicon and metal.

The study suggests that graphene grows in the form of tiny islands built of concentric rings of carbon atoms. The islands are strongly bonded to… read more

‘Mindsight’ could explain sixth sense

February 5, 2004

Some people may be aware that a scene they are looking at has changed without being able to identify what that change is. This could be a newly discovered mode of conscious visual perception, according to University of British Columbia psychologist Ronald Rensink, who discovered it. He has dubbed the phenomenon “mindsight.”

“I think this effect explains a lot of the belief in a sixth sense,” he said.

RSA — Top botnets control 1M hijacked computers

April 11, 2008

Botnets control just over a million hacked computers on the Internet and are capable of flooding the Internet with more than 100 billion spam messages every day, Joe Stewart, director of malware research at SecureWorks, said at the RSA Conference Thursday.

A botnet is a collection of software robots, or bots, that run autonomously and automatically on groups of hacked
“zombie” computers, controlled remotely.

The 20 Most Innovative Products of the Year

December 28, 2006

An operating system that runs entirely on the Web, the fastest desktop chip, and an e-reader are among the most innovative products of 2006.

Also listed: 5 innovations to look for in 2007.

New camera promises to capture your whole life

October 19, 2009


A camera people can wear as a pendant to create “lifelogs” that archive their entire lives will be available on the market next year from Vicon in Oxford.

It was originally developed as the SenseCam by Microsoft Research Cambridge to help jog the memories of people with Alzheimer’s disease.

Smart Software Gives Surveillance Eyes a ‘Brain’

February 13, 2004

University of Rochester researchers have developed “smart camera” software that monitors security cameras for such things as a gun in an airport or the absence of a piece of equipment in a lab.

University of Rochester press release

Toward a Quantum Internet

April 16, 2008

Northwestern University researchers have build a quantum logic gate–a fundamental component of a quantum computer–within an optical fiber, using entangled photon pairs.

The gate could be part of a circuit that relays information securely, over hundreds of kilometers of fiber, from one quantum computer to another. It could also be used on its own to find solutions to complicated mathematical problems.

Top tech movies: Creepy-crawly climbing bots and more

January 10, 2007

A new film shows researchers at Case Western University using robots equipped with a cross between wheels and legs (“whegs”) to test a new material that mimics the gravity-defying feet of geckos and insects.

Another clip shows a flying robot with whegs as well as retractable wings. The robot, resembling a large winged insect, combines the ability to fly with the capacity to crawl to reach a specific location… read more

Pushing ions through carbon nanotubes

September 13, 2010

MIT chemical engineers built tiny channels out of carbon nanotubes — hollow tubes whose walls are made of lattices of carbon atoms. Small particles such as sodium ions and protons can flow through the channels (artist's rendition). (Patrick Gillooly)

For the first time, a team of MIT chemical engineers has observed single ions marching through a tiny carbon-nanotube channel. Such channels could be used as extremely sensitive detectors or as part of a new water-desalination system. They could also allow scientists to study chemical reactions at the single-molecule level.

Carbon nanotubes — tiny, hollow cylinders whose walls are lattices of carbon atoms — are about 10,000 times… read more

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