science + technology news

Sony’s Ando: PCs to function like a brain

December 9, 2002

Sony President Kunitake Ando foresees a future personal computer that knows a person’s individual tendencies and tastes, functioning almost like a surrogate brain.

Hybrid PC-television devices will evolve for consumers and people will be able to retrieve their personal information from powerful networks that allow anytime, anywhere across a variety of individual devices.

Sony’s Humanoid Robot Learns How to Jog

December 18, 2003

Sony has demonstrated a walking robot that can smoothly simulate running. The breakthrough required sophisticated features in the robot’s joints and CPU to keep its balance and manage delicate maneuvers.

Sony’s New Internal Wireless Tech Snips Wires Inside Your Gadgets

February 11, 2010

sony wave

Sony’s new short-range, intra-gadget technology replaces wire with 11 Gbps wireless signals between 30 and 300 gigahertz, allowing for tiny (1 mm.) antennas on components, less breakdowns, and smaller packages.

Soot blamed for global warming underestimate

June 30, 2005

Global warming looks set to be much worse than previously forecast, according to new research.

Three top climate researchers claim that the greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere should have warmed the world more than they have. The reason they have not, they say, is that the warming is being masked by sun-blocking smoke, dust and other polluting particles put into the air by human activity.

But they… read more

SOPA opponents unveil ‘Digital Bill of Rights’

June 13, 2012

United States Bill of Rights

The “Digital Bill of Rights” debuted at the Personal Democracy Forum in New York City on Monday. The document draft comes from Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR), two key figures in the battle against SOPA.

Issa and Wyden created the Digital Bill of Rights because they were concerned about what seemed like a legal oxymoron: lawmakers trying to regulate the Internet without understanding how individuals use… read more

Sophisticated nano-structures assembled with magnets

February 19, 2009

Magnetic and non-magnetic materials have been coaxed to self-assemble in a “ferrofluid” into intricate permanent nanostructures by researchers at Duke University and the University of Massachusetts, raising the possibility of using these structures as basic building blocks for applications such as advanced optics, cloaking devices, data storage, and bioengineering.

Sorenstam’s Got Game, in Reality and Virtually

May 25, 2003

A virtual golf course has been created with the strengths of male and female golfers. It rewards precision, while penalizing shots that are too long or too short, leveling the playing field between men and women.

In a simulated four rounds of golf, golfer Annika Sorenstam was the winner.

Sorting out circulating tumor cells in the blood with sound waves

Could help assess cancer’s spread
August 28, 2014

sorting out

A research team has developed a device that could be used to detect the extremely rare tumor cells that circulate in cancer patients’ blood, helping doctors predict whether a tumor is going to spread.

Developed by researchers from MIT, Pennsylvania State University, and Carnegie Mellon University, the dime-sized device separates out tumor cells from white blood cells by exposing the cells to sound… read more

Sorting out semiconducting and conducting nanotubes

November 21, 2011

Polimer coated nanotubes

A technique to selectively sort semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes and conducting nanotubes has been discovered by researchers at Stanford University, University of California-Davis, and the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology.

When nanotubes are manufactured, semiconducting nanotubes, which work for transistors and solar cells, are mixed with conducting nanotubes, which work for batteries. Mixtures of conducting and semiconducting nanotubes do not carry enough current for wires or battery… read more

Sorting Technique May Boost Nanotube Research

June 27, 2003

German researchers report a simple
electrical technique to divide
semiconducting and metallic nanotubes by using an electric field
to draw the more conductive metallic tubes to an electrode.

According to chemist Richard
Smalley of Rice University, the technique is long overdue and will find immediate use.

The technique is described in a paper published online by Science this week (

Souls of a new machine

November 27, 2006

Intelligence augmentation (IA) is a catch-all term for a wide variety of methods that use actual human beings, with actual human brains, as part of computer programs. The idea is that by having a human deal with the specific parts of a problem that are difficult or impossible for a computer, but trivial for you or me, you can have a program that seems to possess real human intelligence.… read more

Sound bullets could treat cancers and replace ultrasound

April 7, 2010

A group of US scientists has developed an acoustic lens made of a metamaterial that can focus acoustic waves with greater energy than ever before possible to produce “sound bullets” that could find many uses, including effective, nonintrusive sonic scalpels for destroying tumors or kidney stones.

It could also be used to produce near photo-quality images of the inside of the body, but without the radiation risks of X-rays.

Sound imaging: clever acoustics help blind people see the world

July 3, 2009

University of Bristol and University of Laguna researchers have developed a system using video from portable cameras that calculates the distance of obstacles, predicts the movements of people and cars, and generates three-dimensional acoustic maps, compensating for head positioning using a gyroscopic sensor.

Sound waves produce nuclear fusion

July 15, 2005

UPDATE: The bubble bursts

An inexpensive “tabletop” device that uses sound waves to produce nuclear fusion reactions could lead to a new source of clean energy and a host of portable detectors and other applications.

A key component of the experiment was a glass test chamber about the size of two coffee mugs filled with a liquid called deuterated acetone, which contains a form of hydrogen… read more

Sound-blasting chips for on-the-spot forensics

May 26, 2010

By using surface acoustic waves (SAWs) to manipulate biological samples on a “lab-on-a-chip,” rapid, on-the-spot chemical analysis and diagnosis of disease has moved closer to reality.

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