Posts

January 23, 2015

+
10:05 PM | Microsoft’s Holographic System Will Project More Than Princess Leia
When I first watched R2D2 beam a hologram of a distraught Princess Leia onto a tabletop, I was more interested in how I could get my hands on that technology than I was about her problem (don’t judge—I was little … Continue reading →
+
4:46 PM | Improving the bad reputation of crows
In literature, crows and ravens are a bad omen and are associated with witches. Most people believe they steal, eat other birds' eggs and reduce the populations of other birds. But a new study, which has brought together over 326 interactions between corvids and their prey, demonstrates that their notoriety is not entirely merited. Subject:  Animal Research
+
4:32 PM | Hello Windows 10: could this be a winner for Microsoft?
The hype around the next generation of Windows reached a new high this week with the Windows 10 Preview, held at Microsoft’s Redmond HQ in the US. Subject:  Computer Science
+
4:17 PM | The brain's electrical alphabet
Nerve signals consist of sequences of electrical pulses ("spikes") that travel along communication channels, or neural circuits. What alphabet do these sequences use to transmit the information? In other words, what makes up the brain's language? Subject:  Brain & Behavior
+
4:14 PM | Yes, black holes exist in gravitational theories with unbounded speeds of propagation!
Lorentz invariance (LI) is a cornerstone of modern physics, and strongly supported by observations. In fact, all the experiments carried out so far are consistent with it, and no evidence to show that such a symmetry needs to be broken at a certain energy scale. Nevertheless, there are various reasons to construct gravitational theories with broken LI. In particular, our understanding of space-times at Plank scale is still highly limited, and the renomalizability and unitarity of […]
+
3:54 PM | How the universe creates reason, morality
Recent developments in science are beginning to suggest that the universe naturally produces complexity. The emergence of life in general and perhaps even rational life, with its associated technological culture, may be extremely common, argues Clemson researcher Kelly Smith in a recently published paper in the journal Space Policy. What's more, he suggests, this universal tendency has distinctly religious overtones and may even establish a truly universal basis for morality. […]
+
3:50 PM | Hidden infections shorten lifespan
Recent research shows that mild infections without symptoms of illness can still lead to serious consequences by reducing the lifespan of the infected individuals. The study at Lund University in Sweden has been carried out on malaria-infected migratory birds. The infection is thought to speed up the ageing process by shortening the telomeres (i.e., the chromosomes ends) at a faster rate and thereby accelerating senescence. Subject:  Animal Research
+
3:44 PM | Researchers extend telomeres to slow cell aging
Will extending telomeres lead to longer, healthier lives? Researchers have taken an important step toward answering this question by developing a new treatment used in the laboratory that extends telomeres. Subject:  Biology & Aging
+
12:24 AM | Scientists uncover genetic variants that alter brain development
Researchers have identified five genetic variants that influence the size of structures within the brain, a discovery that could help determine the genetic processes that underlie neuropsychiatric diseases. The international study, which included researchers from UNSW's Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing (CHeBA), provides new insight into the causes of variability in human brain development. The study was published in the journal Nature today. Subject:  Brain & […]
+
12:19 AM | Researchers transform used plastic bottles into ecological paper
In order to cut down fewer trees and avoid wasting water, a group of young Mexicans designed a system that converts used PET bottles into mineral paper or peta paper, which is biodegradable and meets quality standards required to print books, boxes general stationery. Subject:  Technology

January 22, 2015

+
10:31 PM | Doomsday Clock moved two minutes closer to midnight
A top scientific publication moved the hand of its famous Doomsday Clock up two minutes on Tuesday to a symbolic position of three-minutes-to-midnight, warning that "the probability of global catastrophe is very high" if the global community does not take immediate steps to curb both the threat of climate change and out-of-control spending on nuclear weapons. Subject:  Technology
+
10:24 PM | Love Letters to Richard Dawkins
The following video contains excerpts of fan mail received by Evolutionary Biologist Richard Dawkins. Because most of the letters were written by Religious Fundamentalists, viewer discretion is advised.
+
10:17 PM | Rosetta Comet 'pouring' more water into space
There has been a significant increase in the amount of water "pouring" out of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the comet on which the Rosetta mission's Philae lander touched down in November 2014. Subject:  Astronomy/Cosmology
+
6:43 PM | Reducing Myc gene activity extends healthy lifespan in mice
A team of scientists based at Brown University has found that reducing expression of a fundamentally important gene called Myc significantly increased the healthy lifespan of laboratory mice, the first such finding regarding this gene in a mammalian species. Subject:  Genetics
+
6:34 PM | Black hole on a diet creates a 'changing look' quasar
Yale University astronomers have identified the first “changing look” quasar, a gleaming object in deep space that appears to have its own dimmer switch. The discovery may offer a glimpse into the life story of the universe’s great beacons. Quasars are massive, luminous objects that draw their energy from black holes. Until now, scientists have been unable to study both the bright and dim phases of a quasar in a single source. Subject:  […]
+
6:26 PM | Film review: Ex Machina
A tautly wound, understated, minimalist psychological sci-fi thriller. Subject:  Artificial Intelligence
+
4:10 PM | Is glass a true solid?
Does glass ever stop flowing? Researchers at the Univ. of Bristol and Kyoto Univ. have combined computer simulation and information theory, originally invented for telephone communication and cryptography, to answer this puzzling question. Watching a glass blower at work we can clearly see the liquid nature of hot glass. Once the glass has cooled down to room temperature though, it has become solid and we can pour wine in it or make window panes out of it. Subject:  […]
+
4:02 PM | Death of a dynamo: a hard drive from space
Hidden magnetic messages contained within ancient meteorites are providing a unique window into the processes that shaped our solar system, and may give a sneak preview of the fate of the Earth’s core as it continues to freeze. The dying moments of an asteroid’s magnetic field have been successfully captured by researchers, in a study that offers a tantalising glimpse of what may happen to the Earth’s magnetic core billions of years from now. Subject:  […]

January 21, 2015

+
8:52 PM | Optimizing optimization algorithms
Optimization algorithms, which try to find the minimum values of mathematical functions, are everywhere in engineering. Among other things, they're used to evaluate design tradeoffs, to assess control systems, and to find patterns in data. Subject:  Computer Science
+
8:47 PM | New vaccine could help you quit smoking
New research from the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry may help millions stick to a common resolution: quitting smoking. Researchers at the Scripps Institute in La Jolla, California, are working on a nicotine vaccine that could put an end to the addiction. Kim Janda, Ph.D.'s approach is to get the body's immune system to treat nicotine like a foreign invader. But getting the body to respond in the right way is a big challenge.
+
7:11 PM | Recipient with artificial heart goes home, raising hopes for device
A patient who received an artificial heart in August has recovered enough to return home, the French company that makes the device said Monday, signaling a milestone toward the possible commercialization of the device. The patient, 68, “is living a completely normal life now,” Alain F. Carpentier, the French surgeon who invented the device, said in an interview posted Monday on the website of Le Parisien, a French daily newspaper. Subject:  Health […]
+
3:42 PM | Two arguments for AI (or robot) rights: The no-relevant-difference argument and the simulation argument
Wednesday, I argued that artificial intelligences created by us might deserve more moral consideration from us than do arbitrarily-chosen human strangers (assuming that the AIs are conscious and have human-like general intelligence and emotional range), since we will be partly responsible for their existence and character. Subject:  Artificial Intelligence
+
3:16 PM | Men and women process emotions differently
Women rate emotional images as more emotionally stimulating than men do and are more likely to remember them. However, there are no gender-related differences in emotional appraisal as far as neutral images are concerned. These were the findings of a large-scale study by a research team at the University of Basel that focused on determining the gender-dependent relationship between emotions, memory performance and brain activity. The results will be published in the latest issue of […]
+
3:07 PM | Milky Way galaxy could be a galactic transport system
"If we combine the map of the dark matter in the Milky Way with the most recent Big Bang model to explain the universe and we hypothesise the existence of space-time tunnels, what we get is that our galaxy could really contain one of these tunnels, and that the tunnel could even be the size of the galaxy itself. But there's more", explains Paolo Salucci, astrophysicist of the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) of Trieste and a dark matter expert. "We could even travel […]
+
2:55 PM | Toward artificial photosynthesis
Through their work, Professor Emad Aziz, head of the HZB Institute "Methods for Material Development", Professor Leone Spiccia from Monash University and their teams have taken an important leap forward in understanding photosynthesis - the method green plants use to obtain energy - in artificial systems. Today findings of the team have been published in the journal ChemSUSChem (DOI: DOI: 10.1002/cssc.201403219) and recently in the renowned Royal Society of Chemistry's Journal of […]
+
2:47 PM | Autistic brains go their own way
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been studied for many years, but there are still more questions than answers. For example, some research into the brain functions of individuals on the autism spectrum have found a lack of synchronization between different parts of the brain that normally work in tandem. But other studies have found the exact opposite - over-synchronization in the brains of those with ASD. Subject:  Brain & Behavior
+
4:15 AM | Cosmic evolution and the meaning of life
Are there trends in evolution — cosmic, biological, and cultural — that support the claim that life is meaningful, or is becoming meaningful, or is becoming increasingly meaningful? Perhaps there is a progressive direction to evolution, perhaps the meaningful eschatology of the universe will gradually unfold as we evolve, and perhaps we can articulate a cosmic vision to describe this unfolding — or perhaps not. Has there been biological progress? Subject:  […]
+
3:33 AM | Nutrition information made easy
Fact panels, package labels, nutrition reports. There has to be a better way to make decisions about the foods you eat. Now there is: the NuVal® Nutritional Scoring System. The NuVal System does the nutritional heavy lifting so you don’t have to. Developed by an independent panel of nutrition and medical experts, the System helps you see – at a glance – the nutritional value of the food you buy. Subject:  Health & Medicine
+
3:00 AM | New signaling pathway provides clues to obesity
A research team has discovered a molecular "rheostat" in the brain's appetite control center that may provide new insights into obesity, which is at epidemic levels in this country. The discovery of this novel cell signaling pathway, reported today in the journal Nature, revises the previous "on-off" switch model of appetite control, said Roger Cone, Ph.D., who led the research team with Masoud Ghamari-Langroudi, M.D., Ph.D. Subject:  Health & Medicine […]
+
2:47 AM | New imaging system causes tumors to glow for easier detection
With the goal of making it easier for surgeons to detect malignant tissue during surgery and hopefully reduce the rate of cancer recurrence, scientists have invented a new imaging system that causes tumors to "light up" when a hand-held laser is directed at them. Subject:  Health & Medicine
12345678
228 Results