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Drew Halley

Drew Halley

Drew Halley is a graduate student researcher in Anthropology and is part of the Social Science Matrix at UC Berkeley. He is a PhD candidate in biological anthropology at UC Berkeley studying the evolution of primate brain development. His undergraduate research looked at the genetics of neurotransmission, human sexuality, and flotation tank sensory deprivation at Penn State University. He also enjoys brewing beer, photography, public science education, and dungeness crab. Drew was recommended for the Science Envoy program by UC Berkeley anthropologist/neuroscientist Terrence Deacon.

From This Author


Kindle Rocks in 2010, Survives the iPad

2010 could easily have been the year that the Kindle died a quiet death, buried alongside fellow victims of the Apple empire... the year that Amazon reconsidered its tablet aspirations, bowing humbly to its better,...

A Review of the Best Robots of 2010

Welcome to the third annual Singularity Hub robotic year-in-review. We’ll be showing you the best robots – and the most incredible videos – from 2010. This year we’ve seen robots guarding nuclear stockpiles, flying...

Motorola Taunts iPad, Prepares to Reveal its Tablet (video)

The age of the tablet has been almost entirely dominated by the iPad, and that isn’t for lack of competitors. Apple seems to have a lock on the market, and we have yet to...

Universal Translators in the Next Few Years?

The universal translator is a sci-fi staple: Star Trek made it infamous. Star Wars had C3PO. Hitchhiker’s Guide had the babel fish. Stargate and Dr. Who both had some variation of a voice-to-voice translating...

DNA sequencing for 1/10 the price: Ion Torrent’s sequencer arrives

Thinking of setting up your own genomics lab in the garage? Time to update your Christmas list. The Personal Genome Machine (PGM) by Ion Torrent is a DIY biologist’s fantasy: it’s fast, compact, and...

A Robot Stole My Job: Automation in the Recession

Are robots creating a jobless recovery? A recent forecast by the UCLA Anderson School of Business echoes a common refrain in economic circles: as the economy recovers, jobs might not. The report, released last...

Researchers Barcode Mouse Embryos, Humans Next

In most laboratories, mixing up your samples probably means a botched experiment and a bit of frustration. But if you happen to work in reproductive technologies, an accidental swap might… well… impregnate a woman...

The Pills Have Eyes: Microchipped Medicine Is Coming

Open wide! Earlier this month, Swiss pharma giant Novartis announced it will be seeking regulatory approval of “smart pills” embedded with microchips within the next 18 months. The chip-on-a-pill, developed by Proteus Biomedical (and...

The vOICe System Rewires the Brain’s Audio into Visual

Imagine if all the sounds in your world translated into visual experiences. Sound psychedelic? The cross-blending of sensory input – called synesthesia – is normally limited to individuals with a relatively unique...

Autism Diagnosed with a Fifteen Minute Brain Scan (Video)

A new technique developed at King’s College London uses a fifteen minute MRI scan to diagnose autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The scan is used to analyze the structure of grey matter in the brain,...

The Alzheimer’s Drugs You Still Can’t Get

Twenty years ago, researchers made serious headway in the battle against Alzheimer’s disease (AD). They discovered a link between the brain damage in AD patients and plaque deposits in the brain – the...

App Lets You Make a Phone Call With Your Mind (Video)

And you thought having a touch screen was cool. ThinkContacts is a new smart phone app under development that uses your brainwaves to choose between callers and dial them up. The system...

Who Owns You? 20% of the Genes in Your Body are Patented

Here’s a disconcerting thought: for the past thirty years, genes have been patentable. And we’re not just talking genetically modified corn – your genes, pretty much as they exist in your body, can and...

Exercise Boosts Your Brain – Here’s How

We all know exercise is your best shot at having a healthy heart, a strong immune system, and maybe even a 100th birthday party. Years of research have also shown that an active...

Robot Vans Drive, Driverless, from Italy to China (Video)

It’s the perfect sci-fi fantasy: climb into your car, set it to autopilot, then just lean back and enjoy your morning coffee as you’re whisked off to your destination. Driverless vehicles have come...

Touch Bionics Gives an 18-Year-Old Amputee His Hand Back (Video)

The Today Show recently ran a feature on an 18-year-old who was recently outfitted with ProDigits, the partial hand prosthesis developed by Touch Bionics. Michael Waldron was born with a congenital malformation that...

Mind-Controlled Artificial Arm Begins the First Human Testing

The world’s first human testing of a mind-controlled artificial limb is ready to begin. A joint project between the Pentagon and Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), the Modular Prosthetic Limb will be...

Cloning Extinct Species: How Close Are We?

For as long as life has been a feature of this planet, natural selection has been wiping out species with subpar adaptive strategies. Among the casualties: dinosaurs, mammoths, Neanderthals, and all manner of...

Open Science Summit 2010 – Thursday Review

Over the next few days, Singularity Hub will be bringing exclusive coverage of the Open Science Summit 2010 taking place in Berkeley, CA this weekend. The conference is bringing together a wide range...

Cancer Rates in the US Continue to Drop, ACS Reports

The annual report from the American Cancer Society shows that US cancer death rates continue to decline in both men and women. Since this trend began in the early 1990’s, over 767,000 cancer...

DNA Factory Plans to Open Within 6 Months

Good news for all you aspiring Craig Venters out there. Before the end of the year, synthetic biologists will have a stocked factory of DNA building blocks with which to remix microbe life...

Watching Genetically Engineered Cells Kill Cancer In Real Time

What if you could not only beat cancer, but watch your body do it? Researchers at UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center are using gene therapy to teach immune cells how to attack cancer,...

How Do People Respond to Bad Genetic News? Just Fine.

If you were going to get Alzheimer’s disease, would you want to know? Or is genetic ignorance bliss? The new era of commercial genetics is putting all sorts of predispositions right at...

New Gene Therapy Trials To Test Cure For Bubble Boy Syndrome

New research sponsored at Children’s Hospital Boston will use gene therapy to fix the malfunctioning DNA of children with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), popularly known as the bubble boy syndrome. SCID cripples the...

Antibody Neutralizes 91% of HIV Strains, Strong Step Towards a Vaccine

Will HIV eventually go the way of smallpox and polio? Earlier this month, scientists at the National Institute of Health (NIH) announced their discovery of three new HIV antibodies, the most powerful of which neutralizes 91%...

Computer Chip Implant to Program Brain Activity, Treat Parkinson’s

An international team of researchers led by Dr. Matti Mintz at the University of Tel Aviv is working on a biomimetic computer chip for brain stimulation that is programmable, responsive to neural activity, and...

New Cancer Vaccine Kills Lymphoma, Now in Phase III Clinical Trials

Why fight cancer with chemotherapy or radiation when you can teach the immune system to do it for you? Sound far-fetched? In fact, cancer vaccines have already arrived. We’ve recently reported on Provenge, a...

Cure For Multiple Sclerosis? Liberation Procedure Moves Forward

For years, scientists have struggled to understand why the immune systems of multiple sclerosis patients attack their own bodies. With such a debilitating disease, a simple cause – and a simple cure –...

Potential Flaws in Longevity Genetics Study

Here at Singularity Hub, any study that shows the genetic origins of extreme longevity – especially one showing huge effects and published in a journal as prestigious as Science – is basically our bread...

Biological Microchip Mimics a Real Lung – It Even Breathes!

Who says biology, engineering, and medicine are different fields? Researchers led by Dr. Donald Ingber at Harvard’s Wyss Institute reported in Science that they have engineered a coin-sized microchip that can be loaded...

FDA Will Regulate Commercial Genetics

The New York Times reports that last week the FDA announced plans to regulate commercial genetics companies like 23andMe and deCODE. The agency sent (and posted) letters to five major genetics companies, claiming...

New Research Sheds Light on Autism’s Genetic Causes

Autism remains one of the most poorly understood and troubling developmental disorders of modern medicine. But the genetic revolution could turn that around. Recent research by the groundbreaking Autism Genome Project has...

Bone Marrow Stem Cells Reverse Sickle Cell Disease

A revolutionary new procedure for stem cell transplant is reversing the effects of severe adult sickle cell disease. For years, adults suffering from sickle cell anemia have relied on consistent blood transfusions and...

The Genome Project is 10 Years Old – Where is the Health Care Revolution?

“It is fair to say that the Human Genome Project has not yet directly affected the health care of most individuals.” – Francis Collins, April 2010, Nature. What’s in a genome?  Ten years ago, the...

Prenatal Screening Could Eradicate Genetic Disease, Replace Natural Conception

Genetic birth defect screening is about to get faster, cheaper, and more comprehensive - all at once. A new technique could soon make genetic defects a thing of the past... and replace natural conception...

The Genetically Modified Food You Eat

Would you eat food that was genetically modified? You probably already have. Scientists have been tinkering with the DNA of commercial food for nearly two decades, and they've covered most of the food pyramid. ...

Will Your ID Soon Be a Microchip Under Your Skin?

Yet another sci-fi milestone is upon us: microchips implanted under your skin and used to identify you. The VeriChip is the first radio-frequency identification (RFID) microchip that's been approved by the Food and Drug Administration...

The Wireless Future of Energy Tranfer

The electronic revolution of the past century has been a tangled affair. Remember when phones were always wired into the wall? When the internet required one more cord from the back of...

Artificial Life on the Horizon

Admit it: you wouldn’t mind winning a Nobel Prize. Well here’s a science project for you: reverse global warming, solve the world’s energy crisis, and pave the way for breakthrough antibiotics and vaccines… all...

Test for Cancer With a Take-Home Kit

What if checking for cancer was as easy as a pregnancy test? Soon, it will be. Catching cancer early is the most crucial step to providing effective and proactive treatment against it. But...

Growing Organs in the Lab

Why transplant an organ when you can grow yourself a new one? This research isn't something that might happen in the distant future.  It's being used today to grow fresh organs, open up new ways...

Giving Your Kidneys a Makeover: Stem Cells Cure Nephritis

Once upon a time, if you had a failing organ, you could pretty much consider it a death sentence. Then along came organ transplants, letting you swap out your defectives for slightly used...

The National Ignition Facility Aims to Create a Mini Star

World, meet the National Ignition Facility: a massive and incredible research device to study (and create) controlled nuclear fusion. Containing the world's largest and highest-energy laser, the facility hopes to create the first...

From Dolly to Injaz: The Cloning Revolution Takes Off

Dolly was so 90's. Most of us are waiting for scientists to clone something awesome, like velociraptors or wholly mammoths... hell, even a giant sloth would be cool. But, to quote Dr....

Man Receives First US Double Hand Transplant

Ten years ago, Jeff Kepner lost both his hands and feet to a bacterial infection. Today, he is recovering from the first US double hand transplant surgery. Soon, he'll be able to...

Machine Pumps Dead Hearts for Surgery Practice (Video)

Got an experiment in mind? Looking for a lab rat?  Unless you're trying out a new grilled cheese recipe, humans won't be your first trial subjects.  Dangerous experiments usually call for live animal testing...

The Future of Sex: Androids, VR, and the Orgasm Button

Forget the Turing test. Imagine when a machine can not only convince us of their intelligence, but attract us with it. Bladerunner gave us a great glimpse in the eighties: sexy androids manipulating...
video

Enter the AlloSphere: a 360° Audiovisual Research Dome

"Data analysis." Sounds exciting, right? Most of us would sooner put out an eye than crunch some numbers. But what if you could trade in that Excel spreadsheet for a giant, 360...

Health Care’s Wireless Future: Vital Signs in Remote Real-time

When we have to act fast, today's technology puts critical real-time information right at our fingertips. Weather updates on your cell phone can send you running for shelter moments before a downpour. Getting...

Biometrics Turns Your Ear Into Your Password

What is your mother's maiden name? What was your high school mascot? What town were you born in? Who cares! Pretty soon, your body could be the only password you'll ever...

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