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Researchers Grow Bone Cells on Carbon Nanotubes

March 15, 2006
Bone crystal growth on carbon nanotube substrate

Researchers at the University of California, Riverside have shown, for the first time, that bone cells can grow and proliferate on a scaffold of carbon nanotubes.

Because carbon nanotubes are not biodegradable, they behave like an inert matrix on which cells can proliferate and deposit new living material, which becomes functional, normal bone, according to the paper. They therefore hold promise in the treatment of bone defects… read more

Next Step In Robot Development Is Child’s Play

April 28, 2008
(ICT Results)

The RobotCub project, developers of the iCub robot, want to develop their robots’ cognitive capabilities by mimicking how small children learn by doing and by comparing their actions to previous experience.

Six European research labs have proposed projects to help train the robots to learn about their surroundings, just as a child would.

iCub robots are about the size of three-year-old children, with highly dexterous hands… read more

New class of human stem cells discovered

June 9, 2003

Scientists have discovered a new class of human stem cells that grow rapidly when implanted in the bone marrow of mice, with possible implications for designing more effective cancer therapies.

“This is an exciting discovery because for the first time we have found human stem cells that rapidly rebuild a blood system,” said Dr. John Dick, lead author of the study, senior scientist with University Health Network, and a… read more

Medibots: The world’s smallest surgeons

November 20, 2009

Swimming camera capsule (The Royal College of Surgeons / Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna)

Advances in robotics could revolutionize healthcare, pushing the limits of what surgeons can achieve, from worm-inspired capsules to crawl through your gut, and systems swallowed in pieces that assemble themselves inside the body, to surgical robots that will soon be ready to embark on a fantastic voyage through our bodies, homing in on the part that’s ailing and fixing it from the inside.

Nuclear clock accurate to .05 seconds in 14 billion years

March 14, 2012

A proposed new time-keeping system tied to the orbiting of a neutron around an atomic nucleus could have such unprecedented accuracy that it neither gains nor loses 1/20th of a second in 14 billion years — the age of the Universe.

Might this be useful to CERN in assuring more accurate measurements — for neutrino transmission times, for example?

“This is nearly 100 times more accurate… read more

Chip ramps up neuron-to-computer communicati

March 28, 2006

A specialised microchip that could communicate with thousands of individual brain cells has been developed by European scientists.

The device will help researchers examine the workings of interconnected brain cells, and might one day enable them to develop computers that use live neurons for memory.

It is capable of receiving signals from more than 16,000 mammalian brain cells in vitro, and sending messages back to several hundred cells.

H.P. Reports Big Advance in Memory Chip Design

May 1, 2008

Hewlett-Packard scientists have designed a simple circuit element, the memrister, that they believe will make it possible to build tiny powerful computers that could imitate biological functions.

The memristor would be used to build extremely dense computer memory chips that use far less power than today’s DRAM memory chips, and should be fairly quickly commercialized, said R. Stanley Williams, director of the quantum science research group at Hewlett-Packard.… read more

Brain Experts Now Follow the Money

June 17, 2003

Neuroscientists are developing a new field of study, called neuroeconomics, to provide a theory of how people decide in economic and strategic situations.

To explore economic decision making, researchers are scanning the brains of people as they engage in a variety of games designed by experimental economists.
Some findings:

  • In making short-term predictions, neural systems tap into gut feelings and emotions.
  • The brain relies on
  • read more

    Why females live longer than males: is it due to the father’s sperm?

    December 2, 2009

    Mice created from two female genome lived an average of 186 days longer (a third longer) than control mice created from the normal combination of a male and female genome, Japanese scientists have found.

    The study may give an answer to fundamental questions: whether longevity in mammals is controlled by the genome composition of only one or both parents, and why women are at an advantage over men with… read more

    Fixing the brain with computers

    March 20, 2012


    A Techwise Conversation with neurosurgeon and hacker Dr. Richard Bucholz from an IEEE Spectrum “Techwise Conversations” podcast.

    Disabilities such as epilepsy, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and even Parkinson’s disease are being treated with neuroimplants.

    Other scientists are working to substitute hearing for sight in blind people, and still others want to solve blindness entirely by implanting cameras in the brain.

    Listen to the podcast.

    Seashells hold key to building a better battery

    April 11, 2006

    Building on studies of seashells by the seashore, MIT scientists have harnessed genetically engineered viruses to build nanoscale components that could lead to a new generation of powerful batteries that are as small as grains of rice and that spontaneously assemble themselves in laboratory dishes.

    Pentagon Wants Cyberwar Range to ‘Replicate Human Behavior and Frailties’

    May 7, 2008

    DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) has released a request for proposals to develop a National Cyber Range, part of a $30 billion, government-wide effort to prepare for online battle.

    The range would “replicate realistic human behavior,” with realistic, sophisticated, nation-state quality offensive and defensive opposition forces,” with “replicants” able to fight military info-warriors in mock combat. It would “integrate, replicate, or simulate” military satellite and digital radio… read more

    Sensors of the World, Unite!

    July 1, 2003

    Imagine sprinkling tiny sensors on road and fields for surveillance, putting them in buildings and bridges to monitor structural health, and installing them in industrial facilities to manage energy, inventory and manufacturing processes. That’s the idea behind the emerging technology of wireless sensor networks.

    During 2001, there were 150 million CPU class chips sold. But during the same period of time, 7.5 billion embedded microcontrollers were sold.

    Google Reinvents Search For Mobile Era

    December 8, 2009

    Google is deepening its commitment to new modes of search: by voice, location, and sight.

    Google on Monday announced: 1) the inclusion of real-time information in Google search results; 2) Google Goggles, an experimental image recognition system for Android 1.6+ devices by which users can submit search queries using snapshots of certain objects; 3) a “What’s Nearby?” location-based search capability in Google Maps for mobile (version 3.3); 4) Japanese… read more

    Researchers Use Tongue as Interface

    April 25, 2006

    Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition researchers are developing a system that will use the tongue as the interface for Navy SEAL divers, Army Rangers, and other front-line soldiers.

    The “Brain Port” technology enables sonar echoes to be detected via the underused sensory organ, leaving the user’s hands and eyes free to respond to immediate dangers.

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