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Blocking the sun: study looks at costs of 6 geoengineering schemes

September 5, 2012

599px-The_Earth_seen_from_Apollo_17

As the planet warms and the world continues to emit greenhouse gases at a searing pace, some argue that geoengineering ideas are rapidly becoming attractive, if not downright necessary, IEEE Spectrum reports.

In other words, hack the planet.

One of the two main categories of geoengineering is solar radiation management, or SRM. (The other is the direct removal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.)… read more

Blocking chemical lets cells feast on brain plaques

June 9, 2008

Yale University researchers have found that transgenic mice predisposed to develop brain plaques, and with a gene that also blocks TGF-beta, performed better on various mazes than mice with brain plaques alone, and had up to 90 per cent fewer plaques in their brains.

Blocking TGF-beta apparently allowed macrophages (immune cells that digest unwanted materials) to get across the blood-brain barrier into the brain. A TGF-beta blocker could have… read more

Blio to Revolutionize Digital Reading Experience, Launches September 28

September 17, 2010

K-NFB Reading Technology, creator and developer of Blio, has announced that the e-reader application will be available for download beginning September 28 at www.blioreader.com.

Blio will be free to download and available immediately for all Windows-based devices, with applications for iOS and Android operating systems following soon after. In the coming months, Blio will be rolled out worldwide through device manufacturers, retailers, mobile… read more

Blindspot shows brain rewiring in an instant

July 17, 2009

Our brains can rewire themselves in just seconds to compensate for a break in incoming data, suggesting they are even more flexible than previously thought, MIT scientists have found.

Blindness Causes Structural Brain Changes, Implying Brain Can Re-Organize Itself to Adapt

November 19, 2009

Blindness causes structural changes in the brain, indicating that the brain may reorganize itself functionally in order to adapt to a loss in sensory input, say UCLA Department of Neurology scientists.

For long-term blind subjects, they found significant enlargement in areas of the brain not responsible for vision, such as working memory and improved ability to feel subtle changes in temperature and distinguish between the auditory echoes caused by… read more

Blinded eyes restored to sight by stem cells

June 24, 2010

Stem cells have restored sight to 82 people with eyes blinded by chemical or heat burns, restoring vision to a level up to 0.9 on a visual acuity scale (1 represents perfect vision), reports Graziella Pellegrini at the University of Modena in Italy.

Blinded by Science

July 17, 2002

“Science fact is rapidly outstripping science fiction,” said Neil Gershenfeld, head of the new Center for Bits and Atoms at M.I.T.’s Media Laboratory.Examples include:

* A radio-signal message “teleported” in a laser beam

* Genetically altered goats whose milk contains a gene from the golden-orb weaving spider

* “Tooth phone”

* Using principles of insect locomotion and the suction qualities of geckos’ toes to develop lifelike… read more

Blind, Yet Seeing: The Brain’s Subconscious Visual Sense

December 23, 2008

An international team of brain researchers have reported experiments with a patient with destroyed visual lobes who shows “blindsight” — unconscious perception of obstacles.

Blind to Change, Even as It Stares Us in the Face

April 2, 2008

The results of change blindness studies and other experiments strongly suggest that the visual system can focus on only one or very few objects at a time (maybe 30 or 40 objects per second), and that anything lying outside a given moment’s cone of interest gets short shrift.

This is because the brain has evolved mechanisms for combating data overload, allowing large rivers of data to pass along optical… read more

Blind students test-drive experimental vehicle

August 3, 2009

Virginia Tech engineers have developed the first vehicle that can be independently operated by a blind driver.

Using data from a laser scan of obstacles, a computer voice signals the driver through headphones how to steer to avoid a collision — one click to the left, for example; three clicks to the right — and the vehicle’s computer communicates speed with vibrations fed through a vest worn by the… read more

Blind patient reads words stimulated directly onto the retina

Neuroprosthetic device uses implant to project visual braille
November 23, 2012

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Researchers have projected braille patterns directly into a blind patient’s retina, allowing him to read four-letter words accurately and quickly with an ocular neuroprosthetic device.
The device, Second Sight‘s Argus II, has been implanted in over 50 patients, many of who can now see color, movement and objects.

It uses a small camera mounted on a pair of glasses, a portable processor to… read more

Blind mole rats may hold key to cancer

November 6, 2012

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Some 23% of humans die of cancer, but blind mole rats — which can live for 21 years, an impressive age among rodents — seem to be immune to the disease.

Cell cultures from two species of blind mole rat, Spalax judaei and Spalax golani, behave in ways that render them impervious to the growth of tumors, according to work by Vera Gorbunova at the University of Rochester,… read more

Blind Mice Can See, Thanks To Special Retinal Cells

July 15, 2010

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University’s Krieger School of Arts and Sciences have found that mice that didn’t have any rods and cones function could still see — and not just light, but also patterns and images — using intrinsically photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells (ipRGCs) — special photosensitive cells in the rodents’ retinas.

“Our study shows that even mice which were blind could form low-acuity yet measurable images, using ipRGCs,”… read more

Blind Man Drives Car on Daytona International Speedway

February 1, 2011

blinddriver

For the first time, a blind person has driven a street vehicle in public without the assistance of a sighted person — and successfully navigated 1.5 miles of the road course section of the Daytona International Speedway on January 29, dodging obstacles, some of them stationary and some thrown into his path at random from a van driving in front of him, according to the National Federationread more

Blazing Speed: The Fastest Stuff in the Universe

January 24, 2005

Astronomers are now measuring matter that moves at 99.9 percent of the speed of light.

The fast-moving material consists of blobs of hot gas embedded in streams of material ejected from hyperactive galaxies known as blazars; and ultra high-energy cosmic rays.

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