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Surprising results from brain and cognitive studies of a 93-year-old woman athelete

August 18, 2015

Olga Kotelko's brain "does not look like a 90-plus-year-old" ---  Beckman Institute director Art Kramer

Brain scans and cognitive tests of Olga Kotelko, a 93-year-old Canadian track-and-field athlete with more than 30 world records in her age group, may support the potential beneficial effects of exercise on cognition in the “oldest old.”

In the summer of 2012, researchers at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois invited her to visit for in-depth analysis… read more

Surprising twist in debate over lab-made H5N1

March 11, 2012

H5N1 virus (credit: Lennart Nilsson)

A researcher who created one of the H5N1 mutants and a leading U.S. health official say the threat has been blown out of proportion, offering what they said were clarifications and “new data” to better gauge the risk it presents.

Contrary to widespread reports, the researcher, Ron Fouchier of Erasmus MC in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, revealed that the virus made in his lab does not kill ferrets infected by… read more

Surveillance made easy

August 25, 2008

Governments around the world are developing increasingly sophisticated electronic surveillance methods in a bid to identify terrorist cells or spot criminal activity.

German electronics company Siemens has gone a step further, developing a complete “surveillance in a box” system called the Intelligence Platform, pooling data from sources such as telephone calls, email and internet activity, bank transactions and insurance records. It then sorts through this mountain of information using… read more

Surveillance Nation

March 24, 2003

Webcams, tracking devices, and interlinked databases are leading to the elimination of unmonitored public space. Are we prepared for the consequences of the intelligence- gathering network we’re unintentionally building?

Surveillance Net Yields Few Suspects

February 6, 2006

To find clues to terrorists in its terabytes of speech, text, and image data, the NSA uses AI-enhanced link analysis of associated people, places, things and events.

It also relies on decomposing an audio signal to find qualities useful to pattern analysis, using acoustic engineering, behavioral psychology and computational linguistics, as well as clues to deceptive intent in the words and paralinguistic features of a conversation, such as pitch,… read more

Surveillance robot knows when to hide

March 22, 2011

Surveillance Robot

A surveillance robot that knows when to hide has been developed by Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Laboratories.

The robot avoids visible detection by sentries of known locations, potential detection by sentries whose positions are unknown, areas in which the robot has no means of escape, and areas that are well lit.

It builds a computer model of its surroundings and incorporates information on lines of sight. A laser… read more

Surveillance Software Knows What a Camera Sees

June 1, 2010

(Song-Chun Zhu/UCLA)

I2T (Image to Text), a prototype computer vision system that can generate a live text description of what’s happening in a feed from a surveillance camera, has been developed by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles and ObjectVideo of Reston, VA.

It puts a series of computer vision algorithms into a system that takes images or video frames as input, and spits out summaries of what they… read more

Surveillance video becomes a tool for studying customer behavior

January 31, 2012

Prism Skylabs

The huge success of online shopping and advertising — led by giants like Amazon and Google — is in no small part thanks to software that logs when you visit Web pages and what you click on. Startup Prism Skylabs offers brick-and-mortar businesses the equivalent — anonymously counting, logging, and tracking people in a store, coffee shop, or gym with software that works with video from security cameras.… read more

Survey: U.S. residents addicted to e-mail

June 2, 2005

U.S. residents are so hooked on e-mail that some check for messages in the bathroom, in church and while driving, a new survey sponsored by America Online Inc. has found.

About a fourth of respondents acknowledged being so addicted to e-mail that they can’t go more than two or three days without checking for messages. That includes vacations, during which 60% of respondents admitted logging into their in-boxes.

Survival of the fittest theory: Darwinism’s limits

February 4, 2010

Darwinists say that evolution is explained by the selection of phenotypic traits (heritable biological properties) by environmental filters, but the effects of endogenous structure, such as gene regulatory networks, can wreak havoc with this theory.

So say cognitive scientists Jerry Fodor and Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini in a new book, What Darwin Got Wrong.

“Pigs don’t have wings, but that’s not because winged pigs once lost out to wingless ones,”… read more

‘Survival protein’ protects the brain against effects of stroke

May 25, 2011

(Credit: iStockphoto)

A “survival protein” that protects the brain against the effects of stroke in rodent brain tissue has been discovered by scientists at Johns Hopkins University. The finding has implications for treating stroke as well as Parkinson’s Disease, diabetes, and heart attack.

When brain tissue is subjected to a stressful but not lethal insult, a defense response occurs that protects cells from subsequent insult. The scientists dissected this preconditioning… read more

Surviving Immortality: Just getting to the Singularity is the hard part

August 20, 2007

“The real peril in [the Singularity] is that our social, cultural, and political technologies probably won’t keep pace, meaning we’ll have whole new ways to hurt ourselves and others along with the same old ways to keep ourselves from doing so,” opines PBS columnist Robert X. Cringely.

Susan Greenfield: living online is changing our brains

August 5, 2011

(Credit: iStockphoto)

Neuroscientist Susan Greenfield cited evidence that digital technology is having an impact on our brains:

read more

Suspected cause of type 1 diabetes observed

May 12, 2008

Scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis working with diabetic mice have found dendritic cells in the islets of Langerhans carrying insulin and fragments of insulin-producing cells known as beta cells, which could trigger an immune attack on beta cells.

“Now that we’ve isolated dendritic cells from the pancreas, we can look at why they get into the pancreas and determine which of the materials that… read more

Swarm Intelligence: An Interview with Eric Bonabeau

February 26, 2003

Dr. Eric Bonabeau takes us from his childhood nightmares of carnivorous wasps to applying the theories of swarm intelligence to solving real problems in the business world.

“It’s no longer possible to use traditional, centralized, hierarchical command and control techniques to deal with systems that have thousands or even millions of dynamically changing, communicating, heterogeneous entities,” he says. “I think that the type of solution swarm intelligence offers is… read more

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