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Monthly Archives: June 2014

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New Material Sucks Water From the Air and Stores It

As the changing climate pushes arid regions around the world to become drier, many are asking how we will continue to provide enough water for the people and crops in those areas. Some Rice University...

How Will We Know When Computers Can Think for Themselves?

Headlines recently exploded with news that a computer program called Eugene Goostman had become the first to pass the Turing test, a method devised by computing pioneer Alan Turing to objectively prove a computer...

Around the World Without a Drop of Fuel — Solar Impulse 2 Logs Its First Flight

Its wingspan matches a Boeing 747, every square inch covered in solar panels. A quarter of its weight is dedicated to energy storage. It flies day and night without a drop of conventional fuel....

Basic Smartphones Now Cheap Enough to Replace Feature Phones Worldwide

Earlier this year, Mozilla announced their project to build and sell a $25 smartphone. The firm, maker of the Firefox web browser and mobile operating system, now says they’ll begin selling the device in...

Unfair Advantages of Emotional Computing

Earlier this week, Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son announced an amazing new robot called Pepper. The most amazing feature isn't that it will only cost $2,000, or that Pepper is intended to babysit your kids and work...

Robotic Hand Uses AI to Specialize Its Grip for Any Object

Your cat may think she’s your boss, but she would actually be your boss if it weren’t for a feat of engineering called the human hand, complete with opposable thumbs. It’s not easy to build...

Dr. Franken-Tree, I Presume: Using Biotechnology to Battle Extinction

In thirty years of covering (as an author/journalist) and working on (as an entrepreneur/activist) both ecological issues and technological breakthroughs, I’ve come to the conclusion that the greatest environmental threat we now face is...

Delivering Capsules of Stem Cells Helps Repair Injured Bones

For the recorder of potentially breakthrough medical technology, sometimes it seems that the list is just so many applications of three new technologies: smaller electronics, new materials and stem cells. Any electronic device set...

Bionic Pancreas Promises Big Boost in Health, Quality of Life for Type 1 Diabetics

Diabetes, despite affecting nearly 350 million people worldwide, is not really a controlled illness. Those who have the type 1 form of the illness, in which the pancreas fails to produce the insulin that...

Fasting Helps Cancer Patients Survive Chemotherapy — And It Could Help Us All Live Longer

You’ve probably never heard of Valter Longo, but if you’ve heard about the purported health benefits of intermittent fasting, you’ve likely been exposed to his work. A University of Southern California gerontologist, Longo has...

Massive Military-Funded Project Aims to Re-align Ailing Brains

Deep brain stimulation as a treatment for epilepsy and movement disorders, most notably Parkinson’s disease, has rapidly gone from experimental to standard practice. With devices to provide delicate electro-stimulation to the brain now available...

‘We’re Living in Science Fiction Right Now’ Diamandis Tells GSP 2014

“It’s that time again.” These were the words on more than one pair of lips at Singularity University’s 2014 Graduate Studies Program (GSP) opening ceremony. The 10-week summer program was Singularity University’s first offering six...

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