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Singularity Hub Staff

Singularity Hub Staff

Singularity Hub chronicles technological progress by highlighting the breakthroughs and issues shaping the future as well as supporting a global community of smart, passionate, action-oriented people who want to change the world.

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Genetic Mutation Found in 1% of Population Almost Guarantees Onset of Heart Disease

The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute today published a press release presenting the discovery of a gene mutation in roughly 1% of the world population that virtually guarantees the onset of heart disease in its...

Silicon Valley’s Transhumanist Movement Uncovered

David Gelles from The Futurist has written a very detailed piece that describes Silicon Valley as the epicenter of a worldwide transhumanist movement.  Gelles' article is neither pro nor anti transhumanist, but instead is...

16 Amazing Robot Videos

Robot innovation continued its relentless advances during 2008. In this post we would like to showcase some of our favorite robots and robot videos of the last year or so. This review is heavily...

Jeff Hawkins: Recreating Human Intelligence

If you are at all interested in artificial intelligence and understanding how the human brain works then following the work of Jeff Hawkins (pictured right: source) is an excellent place to start.  Jeff Hawkins, founder...

Monkey’s Thoughts Control Robot Halfway Across the World

The New York Times today reports on an awesome experiment in which thoughts were extracted from a monkey in the US and used to control a walking robot in Japan.  An electrode array implanted...

IBM Research Creates 3D Microscope With 100 Million Times Finer Resolution Than Current MRI

IBM Research issued a major press release today announcing the creation of a microscope that can determine the 3-Dimensional structure of large molecules, bacteria, viruses and other nano sized structures with a resolution of...

Top 10 Countries By Robot Density

Just stumbled on this cool tidbit from ieee spectrum.  Not sure how reliable these numbers are (what metric is used to classify something as a robot?), but its neat to see anyway: There are now...

Captivating Review of the Emerging Field of Nanotechnology

Canada's Globemail has an article titled "Science of tiny raises big hopes, big fears" written by Dean Bennet that gives a captivating view of the emerging field of nanotechnology.  If you have the time and...

A Review of the Best Robots of 2008

Robot innovation continued its relentless advances during 2008. In this post we would like to showcase some of our favorite robots and robot videos of the last year or so.  This review is heavily slanted...

Another Step in the March Towards Designer Babies

The Herald and other major outlets are reporting that the "UK's first genetically selected baby has been born." This sensational claim is misleading since the practice of genetically screening embryos, as was done in this...

Vision Restored to Blind Patients in Gene Therapy Breakthrough

The emerging field of gene therapy took a huge leap forward in 2008 when vision was substantially restored to several blind patients. The patients in the study suffer from Leber’s congenital amaurosis (LCA), a rare...

Reading People’s Actual Thoughts With a Machine

60 Minutes just ran an excellent segment on how fMRI is being used by the Brain Image Analysis Research Group at Carnegie Mellon and elsewhere to literally read people's minds. The video below is...

Nanoscale Levitation – Repulsive Casimir Force Verified

The cover story of the Jan 8, 2009 Nature journal states that “the experimental verification that a bizarre quantum effect — the Casimir force — can manifest itself in its repulsive form is pivotal...

Star Trek Replicator? Barrier Between Physical and Digital Worlds Fading

You know that replicator from Star Trek that was able to make food and other items seemingly out of thin air?  Well, such a device does not disobey the laws of physics and is...

Real Life Transformer Robot

Just found this awesome short video of a transformer robot from Japan.  There are several transformer robot videos out there, but I think this robot represents one of the more elegant designs.  It is...

Solar Power Game-Changer: Near Perfect Absorption of Sunlight, From All Angles

A huge leap has been made in the creation of high efficiency, cost effective solar power with the announcement of the world's first material that absorbs the entire spectrum of sunlight (UV, visible, and...

FIRST Robotics 2009 Competition Kickoff

Over the weekend the 18th annual FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) was officially launched.  This competition challenges and inspires high school student teams to build robots that compete in a match whose rules change each...

Artificial Retina Brings Sight Back to the Blind

Wow!  Physorg.com reports that an artificial retina has achieved real success in bringing limited sight to the blind.  The Department of Energy estimates that 6 million Americans are blind because their retinas have been...

Amateurs Are Trying Genetic Engineering At Home

Marcus Wohlsen from the Associated Press came out with an article on December 26, 2008 describing the emergence of do it yourself genetic engineers (biohackers) working from their basements and garages.  Biohacker Meredith Patterson...

Re-attaching Severed Limbs a Routine Procedure

Did you know that re-attaching severed limbs is a routine procedure that was pioneered in the 60's and has been commonplace since the 80's? Well, we didn't know this either until we stumbled upon...

Whole Genome Sequencing To Cost Only $1,000 By End Of 2009

Singularity Hub predicts the cost to sequence an entire individual human genome will plummet to an astonishing $1,000 by the end of 2009 and the time required for sequencing will require less than one...

Kevin Kelly: Predicting The Next 5000 Days Of The Web

Kevin Kelly, cofounder of Wired, gave a thought provoking, concise, and easy to grasp 20 minute talk at the 2007 EG Conference on the future of the internet.  Below I have posted the video...

What Is Up With The Hub?

The Hub's Keith Kleiner has been busy so there haven't been many posts on the site lately.  Don't despair though...in January Kleiner will be quitting his day job to work fulltime on Singularity Hub. ...

The Rise of the Cyborgs

Discover Magazine has just blown me away with a fascinating story on the current state of brain-computer interfaces (BCI).  The story cites numerous projects underway across the globe in which electrodes implanted into the...

Cook Biotech Offers Stunning Tissue Regeneration Capability

It still seems like science fiction to many, but for more than a decade now mankind has had the technology to regenerate human tissue to repair large or complex wounds resulting from burns, gashes,...

UK Company Creates Animated Humans That Look Like the Real Thing

Timesonline is reporting on a UK company called Image Metrics that has taken animation of human characters for games (Grand Theft Auto, Unreal Tournament) and films (Harry Potter, The Mummy) to an unprecedented level...

Open Source Project Aims to Create Human Level Artificial Intelligence

The Short: Researches across the globe are making daily advances towards the development of human level artificial intelligence, but sadly the algorithms and the software that represent these advances often remain hidden within researcher's computer...

Researchers Reprogram Pancreas Cells to Produce Insulin

The Short: The Harvard Crimson and the LA Times offer some of the better articles reporting that researchers have genetically reprogrammed mice pancreas cells directly into a completely different type of cell called a B...

Researchers Grow an Entire Rat Heart, Pig Heart Next Target

The Short: In January 2008 University of Minnesota Researchers reported that they were able to grow an entire rat heart from scratch. The story is available here at npr, and there is also an audio...

Singularity Hub Reviews Intel CTO Justin Rattner’s IDF Keynote on the Future of Technology

Yesterday Intel CTO Justin Rattner delivered his keynote presentation about the future of technology and the coming of the singularity at Intel's annual Intel Developer Forum (IDF). Although Rattner could use some tips on...

Researchers Produce Red Blood Cells From Stem Cells

News outlets are reporting that researchers from Advanced Cell Technology, Inc have been able to differentiate human embryonic stem cells into red blood cells. This could be a major breakthrough in mankind's quest to...

Tengion – The Company That Will Grow You a Custom Organ

Earlier we reported here at the hub that growing tissue and organs is not a science fiction story about the future, but instead is a technology that exists today. A company called Tengion...

Researchers Stop Decline In Organ Function Associated With Old Age

As humans age the systems in our cells for cleaning up unwanted proteins and other debris become less efficient. It is theorized that junk in our cells thus accumulates, leading to further deterioration...

Monkey Controls Robotic Arm Using Brain-machine Interface

In May the New York Times and many other outlets reported on the "most striking demonstration to date of brain-machine interface technology". From the article: "The findings suggest that brain-controlled prosthetics, while not practical, are...

Robots Controlled by Rat Brains

New Scientist released an awesome article describing how researchers are using rat brains to control a robot. Approximately 300,000 neurons from a rat fetus are deposited onto a sheet of nutrients and electrodes (and...

Alloderm Allows you to Grow New Skin

Lifecell is a company that offers a suite of tissue regeneration technologies that have been used for more than 1 million successful implants and grafts in the last decade. Their flagship product, Alloderm, is...

Growing New Organs is Not the Future…it is Happening Today!

Growing new organs to replace old or damaged organs is no longer science fiction or something we will do in the future. It is happening now and real patients are having real organs...

Robotic Surgery Taking the Industry by Storm

Intuitive Surgical introduced its Da Vinci robotic surgical system to the world in 1999, converting surgeons into "super surgeons" by giving them eyes with 3D HD vision and digital zoom and giving them hands...

With no Health Regulations to Stop Them Chinese Companies Take the Lead in Stem Cell Therapy

In the United States there are countless regulatory hurdles that must be overcome for new drugs and new medical treatments to make their way to the masses. Not so in China! Check out Beike...

World Sees Astounding Surge in Number of Scientists, China Becomes Physics Powerhouse

What if in just a short number of years we could double or triple the number of people in the world that were dedicated to the fields of technology, science, and research? Such...

Lumosity: Keeping Your Brain Healthy so you Can Make it to the Singularity

In the coming decades mankind will unleash an amazing torrent of technological abilities as we march toward the singularity, but that won't mean much for you or me if our bodies don't live long...

Intel: Human and Computer Intelligence Will Merge in 40 Years

"...perhaps as early as 2012 we'll see the lines between human and machine intelligence begin to blur. Nanoscale chips or machines will move through our bodies, fixing deteriorating organs or unclogging arteries.  Sensors will...

A Future Where Babies are Born Without Severe Defects

Nature recently published an article written by Armand Marie Leroi that opens with this interesting question: "Now that many people approve the elimination of certain genetically defective fetuses, is society closer to screening all fetuses...

A “Manhattan Project” for the Next Generation of Bionic Arms

Related to the IEEE special report on prosthetic arms is a fascinating article on prosthetic limbs that can take their signals directly from the nerves or even the brain of the user. As reported...

The Next Generation in Noninvasive Prosthetic Arms

In this piece from the IEEE special report on prosthetics we learn about Deka's amazing noninvasive prosthetic arm. As noted earlier, DARPA gave $30.4 million to fund two projects for the next generation of...

Cloud Computing on the Rise – The World Mind is Upon Us

HP, Intel, and Yahoo announced today the creation of a global cloud computing infrastructure to be used by researchers across the world. Cloud computing is a computing model in which computing resources such as storage...

IEEE Spectrum Special Report on Prosthetic Arms

In Feb 2008 IEEE Spectrum released a fantastic special report on some of the latest work being done on prosthetic arms. The special report covers a lot of ground, but mostly focuses on DARPA's Revolutionizing...

The Networked Pill From Proteus Biomedical

Michael Chorost published an article in MIT Technology Review about a networked pill from a company called Proteus Biomedical. The pill, called Raisin, releases a sand grain sized microchip into the body in...

Michael Chorost – Cochlear Implants and World Wide Mind: The Coming Integration of Humans and Machines

Below is an interesting video of Michael Chorost speaking at Google June 30, 2008. Michael spends about half of the video explaining the amazing cochlear implant that has enabled himself and more than 100,000...

Tiny Robotic Tweezers Can Pick Up and Move Individual Cells!

Newscientist reports that researchers at the University of Toronto have created a microgripper device capable of grabbing and releasing objects as small as a cell. Tiny tweezers or grippers have been created by several...

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