Posts

October 23, 2014

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9:21 PM | Can general anesthesia trigger dementia?
Scientists try to untangle the relationship between a temporary effect and a permanent condition. Sanfra Anastine had surgery at age 42 and couldn’t speak for about 12 hours afterward. The next time she was operated on she was 56 and it took three months for her speech to return. Now 61, Anastine says that she doesn’t have difficulty forming words anymore but is still more forgetful than before her second surgery. She’s afraid of what will happen if she has to go […]
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8:31 PM | Missing link found between vitamin D and prostate cancer
A University of Colorado Cancer Center study recently published in the journal Prostate offers compelling evidence that inflammation may be the link between Vitamin D and prostate cancer. Specifically, the study shows that the gene GDF-15, known to be upregulated by Vitamin D, is notably absent in samples of human prostate cancer driven by inflammation. Subject:  Health & Medicine
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8:07 PM | Sunshine may slow weight gain and diabetes onset
Exposure to moderate amounts of sunshine may slow the development of obesity and diabetes, a study suggests. Scientists who looked at the effect of sunlight on mice say further research will be needed to confirm whether it has the same effect on people. The researchers showed that shining UV light at overfed mice slowed their weight gain. The mice displayed fewer of the warning signs linked to diabetes, such as abnormal glucose levels and resistance to insulin. Subject:  […]
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6:16 PM | Researchers record sight neurons in jumping spider brain
For the first time, a team of interdisciplinary researchers have made recordings of neurons associated with visual perception inside the poppy seed-sized brain of a jumping spider (Phidippus audax). Though neurobiologists have tried for half a century to better understand the brains of jumping spiders, no one has succeeded. The liquid in spiders’ bodies is pressurized, as they move with hydraulic pressure and muscles, so they don’t tolerate previous research techniques. […]
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6:02 PM | Genomic data support early contact between Easter Island and Americas
People may have been making their way from Easter Island to the Americas well before the Dutch commander Jakob Roggeveen arrived with his ships in 1722, according to new genomic evidence showing that the Rapanui people living on that most isolated of islands had significant contact with Native American populations hundreds of years earlier. Subject:  Anthropology
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5:55 PM | Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron" - Teaser Trailer
Get your first look at Ultron trying to tear apart Captain America, Iron Man, Thor and the rest of the world in the first official teaser trailer for Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron," in theaters May 1, 2015!
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5:48 PM | New clues to how weight loss is regulated
A hormone seen as a popular target to develop weight-loss drugs works by directly targeting the brain and triggering previously unknown activity in the nervous system, UT Southwestern Medical Center obesity researchers have found. The fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) hormone has been a key target for developing weight-loss drugs because the protein increases energy expenditure, causing the body to burn calories. But how the hormone worked wasn't known until now. Subject:  […]
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2:07 AM | Elon Musk on SpaceX winning multi-billion contract from NASA
Elon Musk is looking happy following the $2.6B bid the SpaceX just won from NASA - against all odds! "Free education and increased space program fundings will guarantee our success in progression towards a better future and as of now we are doing the opposite" - Elon Musk
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1:58 AM | Two families of comets discovered around nearby star
Biggest census ever of exocomets around Beta Pictoris. Subject:  Astronomy/Cosmology
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1:53 AM | Is dark matter coming from the sun?
For decades, astronomers and cosmologists have postulated that the Universe is filled with an invisible, mysterious mass known as “dark matter.” For decades, the search for this elusive matter has dominated the field of cosmology. Precise measurements were obtained over 20 years ago when dark matter was first mapped in galaxy halos. Only recently has the existence of dark matter over much larger scales than even galaxy clusters been detected. Subject:  […]
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1:46 AM | Earliest modern human genome sequenced
Researchers discover fragments of Neandertal DNA in the genome of a 45,000-year-old modern human from Siberia. A research team led by Svante Pääbo of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, has sequenced the genome of a 45,000-year-old modern human male from western Siberia. Subject:  Genetics
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1:37 AM | Original Star Wars movie models revealed
Before the days of computer graphics, film industry model makers constructed incredibly detailed, hand-made spaceship models for science fiction films. These models helped shape our collective vision of the future, and continue to do so today. Here are 140 up-close photos of ship and vehicle models constructed by ILM for the Original Star Wars Trilogy (1977-1983). Subject:  Technology
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12:48 AM | Removing the salt from fracking
The boom in oil and gas produced through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is seen as a boon for meeting U.S. energy needs. But one byproduct of the process is millions of gallons of water that's much saltier than seawater, after leaching salts from rocks deep below the surface. Subject:  Technology
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12:42 AM | 'Woz' to teach robotics at UTS
Apple Computer co-founder Steve "Woz" Wozniak has joined UTS as adjunct professor – the first adjunct appointment he has accepted at any university. The pioneer inventor, electronics engineer and computer programmer is working with staff and students in the Magic Lab (Innovation and Enterprise Research Laboratory), School of Software and Centre for Quantum Computation and Intelligent Systems in UTS's Faculty of Engineering and IT. "Woz loves the energy, the vibe and the robots […]
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12:13 AM | The autonomous Google car may never actually happen
A good technology demonstration so wows you with what the product can do that you might forget to ask about what it can't. Case in point: Google's self-driving car. There is a surprisingly long list of the things the car can't do, like avoid potholes or operate in heavy rain or snow. Yet a consensus has emerged among many technologists, policymakers, and journalists that Google has essentially solved—or is on the verge of solving—all of the major issues involved with […]

October 22, 2014

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10:24 PM | Love machines
From Pygmalion to Bladerunner, we keep falling for our robot creations. But then, what else is AI good for? Subject:  Artificial Intelligence
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10:18 PM | Titan glowing at dusk and dawn
New maps of Saturn's moon Titan reveal large patches of trace gases shining brightly near the north and south poles. These regions are curiously shifted off the poles, to the east or west, so that dawn is breaking over the southern region while dusk is falling over the northern one. The pair of patches was spotted by a NASA-led international team of researchers investigating the chemical make-up of Titan's atmosphere. Subject:  Astronomy/Cosmology
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8:43 PM | 'I’m scared I’m going to die'
Axl Goode recently discovered that he was sitting only three seats away from Ebola patient Amber Vinson while flying from Cleveland to Dallas on October 13th. Here is his courageous story. The incessant buzzing of my cell phone woke me, text after text pouring in. Rolling over in bed, I saw that the messages were from my dad. Our text conversation was as follows: Dad, “2nd healthcare worker tests positive for Ebola...you know, the ones wearing hazmat suits.” […]
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6:51 PM | Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey Trailer
Nearly a half century after its cinematic debut, Stanley Kubrick’s science-fiction masterpiece “2001: A Space Odyssey” is getting a new trailer ahead of its re-release in Britain. A digitally restored edition of the landmark film returns to theaters across the U.K. on Nov. 28 as part of the British Film Institute’s "Sci-Fi: Days of Fears and Wonder" season.
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5:54 PM | What is holding up artificial intelligence?
The very laws of physics imply that artificial intelligence must be possible. What's holding us up? Subject:  Artificial Intelligence
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3:41 PM | Protection from our own cells
Our immune system defends us from harmful bacteria and viruses, but, if left unchecked, the cells that destroy those invaders can turn on the body itself, causing auto-immune diseases like type-1 diabetes or multiple sclerosis. A molecule called insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) boosts the body's natural defence against this 'friendly fire', scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Monterotondo, Italy, have found. Subject:  Health […]
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3:32 PM | Olive oil most healthful for frying food
Frying is one of the world's most popular ways to prepare food — think fried chicken and french fries. Even candy bars and whole turkeys have joined the list. But before dunking your favorite food in a vat of just any old oil, consider using olive. Scientists report in ACS' Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry that olive oil withstands the heat of the fryer or pan better than several seed oils to yield more healthful food. Subject:  Health & […]
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3:26 PM | A real 'Star Wars' laser bullet
Action-packed science-fiction movies often feature colourful laser bolts. But what would a real laser missile look like during flight, if we could only make it out? How would it illuminate its surroundings? The answers lie in a film made at the Laser Centre of the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences in cooperation with the Faculty of Physics at the University of Warsaw. Subject:  Technology
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3:17 PM | Cooling with molecules
An international team of scientists have become the first ever researchers to successfully reach temperatures below minus 272.15 degrees Celsius – only just above absolute zero – using magnetic molecules. The physicists and chemists are presenting their new investigation today (22 October 2014) in the scientific journal Nature Communications. It was developed by six scientists from Bielefeld University, the University of Manchester (Great Britain), and the Universidad de […]
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4:02 AM | Miniature human intestine grown in mice for first time
Researchers have grown a miniature human intestine in laboratory mice for the first time as part of a research project, which claims to one day be able to cure intestinal diseases by using a patient's own tissue cells. Subject:  Health & Medicine
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3:49 AM | Unsteady on your feet? Little touches could make all the difference
When a toddler takes their first steps we observe an uncertain sway in their walking. Being unsteady on our feet is something we can experience throughout life – and a new study has shown how even the lightest fingertip touch can help people to maintain their balance. The research, led by the University of Birmingham, explains how neural and mechanical mechanisms synchronize our sway with another person. Subject:  Brain & Behavior

October 21, 2014

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11:31 PM | Paralyzed man walks after receiving cells from nose
A man paralyzed from the chest down in a knife attack is walking again after undergoing surgery using cells responsible for the sense of smell, marking an advance in the search for treatments for spinal injuries. Darek Fidyka, 38, received the cells after failing to recover from a stabbing in the back in 2010, according to University College London, whose doctors developed the procedure. The technique involves using olfactory ensheathing cells and placing them in the spinal cord. […]
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8:53 PM | Free will and psychological determinism
Inspired mainly by Marko Vojinovic’s recent essay on physical determinism [1], but also by Mark O’Brien on consciousness [2], Massimo Pigliucci on Hume and skepticism [3], and perhaps a bit by Graham Priest on logic and Buddhism [4], all which skirted the edges of the free will debate, I am going to tackle it from what I see as its flip side, which I will call psychological determinism. First, a few ground points. Subject:  Brain & Behavior […]
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8:36 PM | Will compact fusion reactors will be available in 5 years?
The Farnsworth Fusor; Pons and Fleishmann. It seems the trail to fusion energy has long gone cold — stone cold, that is, and not cold as in cold fusion. Despite the promise of fusion providing a sustainable and safe energy source, fusion reactors are not a dime a dozen and they won’t be replacing coal fired power plants any time soon. Or will they? Lockheed-Martin Skunk Works announced a prototype compact fusion reactor that could be ready within five years. This […]
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8:28 PM | When emotions control objects
Dimming a light, immersive playing on a computer, and tracking yoga exercises in real time—sensors developed by SmartCardia use various vital signs to transmit data to a host of everyday objects. Subject:  Technology
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