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Did Life Begin In Space? New Evidence From Comets

August 15, 2007

Recent probes inside comets show it is overwhelmingly likely that life began in space, according to a new paper by Cardiff University Centre for Astrobiology scientists.

They suggest that radioactive elements can keep water in liquid form in comet interiors for millions of years, making them potentially ideal “incubators” for early life. They also point out that the billions of comets in our solar system and across the galaxy… read more

Get laser-like beams from salt

January 19, 2006

Mechanically shocking a crystal such as salt generates coherent light at terahertz frequencies, which could be used for biomedical imaging and other applications.

How to turn artwork and crafts into robots

July 11, 2012

Hummingbird controller

Almost anything that can be made with paper, paint and cardboard can be animated with an educational robotics kit developed at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute.

No technical experience is necessary to use the kit, but classroom teachers say it fosters interest in technology among students ages 11 and up.

The kit, called Hummingbird, consists of a customized control board along with a variety of lights,… read more

Zyvex announces nanomanipulator

April 17, 2003

Zyvex Corporation has announced the sales release of the S100 Nanomanipulator System, a positioning and testing tool for nanotechnology R&D applications.

The S100 accommodates up to four quadrants of three-dimensional stages, which grasp, move, test, and optimally position molecular-level samples for scanning electron microscopes (SEMs).

The system is an integral part of Zyvex’s plan to provide flexible, automated manufacturing at ever-decreasing sizes.

Why do the majority of people never get cancer?

February 4, 2009

George Klein, Professor Emeritus at the Microbiology and Tumor Biology Center at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, has presented evidence of several biological cancer resistance mechanisms that some individuals have that seem to prevent them from developing cancer.

Facebook, PayPal tycoon embraces sci-fi future

December 27, 2010

As venture capital in Silicon Valley chases the next big mobile app or group discount service, Peter Thiel is asking for them to fund technological breakthroughs that some believe in fervently and others see as sheer fantasy.

He even has a name for it: Breakthrough philanthropy.

Instead of just giving to help the less fortunate here and now, Thiel encouraged his fellow moguls to put their money toward… read more

Sleights of Mind

August 22, 2007

Some magicians have intuitively mastered some of the lessons being learned in the laboratory about the limits of cognition and attention.

In Las Vegas, cognitive scientists such as Daniel Dennett and magicians like The Amazing Randi compare notes.

Robot special: Almost human

February 1, 2006

Researchers are poised to pull together developments in three key fields — walking, talking and manipulation — to produce a new generation of human-like machines.

And when artificial intelligence catches up, they will not only be able to clean the house, do the dishes and take out the garbage, but also to play with children, help care for the elderly and even explore the farthest reaches of space and… read more

Halting nanotech research ‘illogical,’ says pioneer

April 30, 2003

The call for a moratorium on nanoparticle research is more of an attention-grabbing mechanism than a serious proposal, says Eric Drexler, who coined the phrase nanotechnology.

The real threats to nanotechnology are the emergence of the technology in the hands of secretive or irresponsible parties and an attempt to over-control the technology, he adds.

Cutting Coal Use with Sunshine

February 10, 2009
These parabolic mirrors gather heat energy for a 150-megawatt hybrid solar/natural-gas power plant under construction south of Cairo. During the day, solar heat will displace a fraction of the natural gas required to drive the plant

Feeding heat from the sun into coal-fired power stations could turn out to be the cheapest way to simultaneously expand the use of solar energy and trim coal plants’ oversize carbon footprints, says the Electric Power Research Institute.

(Solar Millennium)

Facebook to Live Stream US Congress Opening

January 5, 2011

For the first time in history, the 112th US Congress will be broadcast live on a social network, Facebook (the first day, at least) with swearing in today (Wednesday Jan. 5) at noon EST.

Aubrey de Grey’s ‘Ending Aging’ book published

September 4, 2007

Aubrey de Grey’s much-anticipated book, Ending Aging: The Rejuvenation Breakthroughs That Could Reverse Human Aging in Our Lifetime, co-authored by Michael Rae, was published today by St. Martin’s Press.

Dr. de Grey believes that the key biomedical technology required to eliminate aging-derived debilitation and death entirely–technology that would not only slow but periodically reverse age-related physiological decay, leaving us biologically young into an indefinite future–is now within… read more

Viper vision

February 15, 2006

A new invention uses an ordinary digital-camera light sensor to capture a scene. An array of infrared LEDs then transforms this image into a pattern of heat points that can be projected onto a user’s forehead.

The human forehead is very sensitive to temperature change, so users may be able to “see” a coarse image in their mind. The technique could also be used to relay Braille messages.

An iPhone app for real social video creation and sharing

July 19, 2012

vyclone-screenshot-crowd-movies

What if you could instantly mash up, remix, and share videos with people on other social networks?

That’s the kind of experience that the makers of the Vyclone iPhone app have created, TechCrunch reports.

Vyclone takes advantage of location data to determine who you’re nearby while you’re shooting video in its app. It then matches that video against other users nearby.

The app allows the… read more

Stem cells can become ‘normal sperm’

May 8, 2003

New research suggests it might be possible to take an individual’s cell, create embyronic stem cells from it by therapeutic cloning, and then derive healthy eggs or sperm from them for use in IVF.

The most obvious application would be to treat infertile women who cannot produce any eggs suitable for IVF, or men who cannot produce sperm. And because male ESCs can be turned into eggs as well… read more

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