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Misreading the mind

January 21, 2008

Some of the most exciting endeavors in neuroscience right now are trying to move beyond reductionism, says Jonah Lehrer, an editor at large for Seed magazine.

The Blue Brain Project, for example, a collaboration between the Ecole Polytechnique Federale in Lausanne, Switzerland, and IBM, is in the process of constructing a biologically accurate model of the brain that can be used to simulate experience on a supercomputer.

Cybertroops Keep War Games Real

August 24, 2005

With ever-more-sophisticated simulation and modeling technology, the military today can mix and match real tanks, planes and ships with forces that exist only on computers — and those located in virtual training environments, such as pilots in flight simulators thousands of miles away.

Adding virtual and constructive simulations to live exercises allows the military to create training scenarios that approach the complexity of real warfare at roughly one-tenth of… read more

Man leads machine in chess duel

October 8, 2002

The world’s best human chess player, Vladimir Kramnik, has taken the lead over Deep Fritz, the world’s best computer player, in a million-dollar battle between man and machine.

Kramnik was given a copy of Deep Fritz three months before the start of the contest, allowing him to prepare in a similar way as he would for a match with a grandmaster — by analyzing his previous games.

Unlike… read more

Reengineering A Food Poisoning Microbe To Carry Medicines And Vaccines

June 16, 2009

Bacteria that normally cause food poisoning but have been genetically engineered to be harmless can be loaded with medicine or vaccine for delivery to the intestines (the bacteria can survive the harsh acid conditions of the stomach) for absorption of the compounds into the bloodstream, researchers have found.

Twin strands of DNA seek each other out

January 30, 2008

Researchers have found double-stranded DNA uses complementary electrostatic attraction to recognize and seek out identical DNA in solution.

Although the capacity for single complementary strands of DNA to attract each other is probably the best-known and most fundamental property of DNA, no one knew until now that intact, double-stranded DNA could do this too.

The unexpected finding could shed new light on how DNA repairs itself, how diseases… read more

Nanotech researchers build brawny molecules

September 8, 2005

A breakthrough in nanotechnology could hasten the development of molecular machines that can act as artificial muscles or drug delivery systems in the body.

Chemists at Edinburgh University used ultraviolet light to stimulate human-made molecules to propel small droplets of liquid across flat and sloped surfaces.

The achievement, according to the researchers, is equivalent to a conventional machine lifting an object to more than twice the height of… read more

New DNA origami program allows for more complex nanostructures

April 29, 2011

The CanDo (computer-aided engineering for DNA origami) program can convert a 2-D DNA origami blueprint into a complex 3-D shape, seen here (credit: Do-Nyun Kim)

An MIT team led by biological engineer Mark Bathe has developed computer-aided design software that makes it easier to create complex 3-D nanostructures, using DNA origami (for constructing shapes from a DNA strand ).

DNA origami is a scaffold, or building material for self-assembling nanoscale structures that could be used to deliver drugs, act as biosensors, perform artificial photosynthesis and more.

Bathe’s new software program, dubbed … read more

Tech helps blind ‘see’ computer images

October 25, 2002

A simple touch display for the visually impaired soon could provide access to computer-generated images.

The prototype tactile display is a set of 3,600 small pins, about 10 per inch, which “prints” an image by using an extendable pointer to raise selected pins into a line drawing of the image.

The device is being developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. The tactile display also would… read more

‘Milking’ Microscopic Algae Could Yield Massive Amounts Of Oil

June 23, 2009

Tiny, single-cell algae known as diatoms could be genetically engineered to actively secrete oil products, scientists in Canada and India suggest.

Intel Microchip Packs Two Billion Transistors

February 5, 2008

Intel has just announced the first microchip that contains more than two billion transistors.

The Tukwila chip is a quad-core chip designed for high-end servers and is based on 65-nanometer technology.

Intel will begin implementing Tukwila in the second half of 2008, when it will replace Intel´s previous dual-core chip, the 9100 series called Montvale. Tukwila will double the overall performance of Montvale with a 25% increase in… read more

Nature’s Design Workshop

September 19, 2005

A new field called biomimicry, or biologically inspired design, allows engineers to mimic nature’s successful designs and production methods.

Fossil Protein Breakthrough Will Probe Evolution

November 12, 2002

The first complete sequencing of protein from a fossil bone suggests that proteins can survive for millions of years – long enough to probe the evolution of many extinct species, including the ancestors of modern humans. Pieces of DNA large enough to sequence using sensitive amplification techniques can survive for 100,000 years in permafrost. But osteocalcin, a structural protein that bonds directly to the minerals of bone, can survive for… read more

Singularity University — Day One

June 30, 2009

Day 1 at Singularity University featured discussions with Peter Diamandis and Ray Kurzweil.

A new visualization of the electromagnetic spectrum

May 8, 2015

electromagnetic-infographic-ft

An infographic created by the Department of Energy’s Brookhaven Lab uses ocean creatures and objects to illustrate the extraordinary range of wavelengths (the inverse of frequencies) in the electromagnetic spectrum — from radio waves to gamma rays — and the lab’s role in research at these wavelengths. (The spectrum actually extends beyond the objects shown here.)

Many of these objects, including the 30-meter blue whale or the… read more

Brain Signal Linked to Autism

February 8, 2008

By imaging the brains of adolescents with a high-functioning form of autism as they played an interactive trust game, Baylor College of Medicine cientists have identified a physiological marker specific to the disorder.

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