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Updated: 7 hours 23 min ago

Atom-thick CCD could capture images

Fri, 12/19/2014 - 21:06
An atomically thin material may lead to the thinnest-ever imaging platform. Synthetic two-dimensional materials based on metal chalcogenide compounds could be the basis for superthin devices.

Cheaper 3-D virtual reality system: Powerful enough for a gamer, made for an engineer

Fri, 12/19/2014 - 21:06
It's like a scene from a gamer's wildest dreams: 12 high-definition, 55-inch 3-D televisions all connected to a computer capable of supporting high-end, graphics-intensive gaming. On the massive screen, images are controlled by a Wii remote that interacts with a Kinnect-like Bluetooth device (called SmartTrack), while 3-D glasses worn by the user create dizzying added dimensions.

Technophobia may keep seniors from using apps to manage diabetes

Fri, 12/19/2014 - 21:05
Despite showing interest in web or mobile apps to help manage their type 2 diabetes, only a small number of older adults actually use them, says a new study. Approximately 2.2 million Canadians are living with type 2 diabetes, 2 million of whom are age 50 or older. A study found that although more than 90 per cent of research participants owned a computer or had daily Internet access, just 18 per cent used applications on this technology to help manage their diabetes. While almost half owned smartphones, only 5 per cent used them to manage their disease.

Breakthrough in optical fiber communications

Fri, 12/19/2014 - 18:05
Researchers from the University of Southampton have revealed a breakthrough in optical fiber communications. They developed an approach that enables direct modulation of laser currents to be used to generate highly advanced modulation format signals. The research explores a radically new approach to the generation of spectrally-efficient advanced modulation format signals as required in modern optical communication systems.

Personalized advertising attracts more attention and makes contents of ads easier to remember

Fri, 12/19/2014 - 18:04
Personalized advertisements on the Internet not only attract more attention, they also remain in our memory longer than impersonal ads. People who surf the internet and shop online leave many traces of their behavior behind. These data are increasingly being used by companies to present ads on their websites that are intended to meet people's individual interests and preferences.

Physicists characterize electronic, magnetic structure in transition metal oxides

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 20:45
Scientists have characterized the electronic and magnetic structure in artificially synthesized materials called transition metal oxides.

Instant-start computers possible with new breakthrough

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 20:45
If data could be encoded without current, it would require much less energy and make things like low-power, instant-on computing a ubiquitous reality. Scientists have made a breakthrough in that direction with a room-temperature magnetoelectric memory device. Equivalent to one computer bit, it exhibits the holy grail of next-generation nonvolatile memory: magnetic switchability, in two steps, with nothing but an electric field.

In one aspect of vision, computers catch up to primate brain

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 19:10
For decades, neuroscientists have been trying to design computer networks that can mimic visual skills such as recognizing objects, which the human brain does very accurately and quickly. Until now, no computer model has been able to match the primate brain at visual object recognition during a brief glance. Now neuroscientists have found that one of the latest generation of 'deep neural networks' matches the primate brain.

'Deep learning' finds autism, cancer mutations in unexplored regions of genome

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 19:10
Scientists have built a computer model that has uncovered disease-causing mutations in large regions of the genome that previously could not be explored. Their method seeks out mutations that cause changes in 'gene splicing,' and has revealed unexpected genetic determinants of autism, colon cancer and spinal muscular atrophy.

The right route to disaster relief: Algorithm automatically finds quickest way to calamity-affected sites

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 19:01
A new mapping tool makes preparing for natural disasters and responding to their aftermath easier than ever. Researchers have developed a computer model that analyzes networks of interconnected roads to predict the speediest routes for rescuers to take using real-time data uploaded by aid workers on the ground.

Getting bot responders into shape

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 14:09
Scientists are tackling one of the biggest barriers to the use of robots in emergency response: energy efficiency. They are developing technology that will dramatically improve the endurance of legged robots, helping them operate for long periods while performing the types of locomotion most relevant to disaster response scenarios.

Electron spin could be the key to high-temperature superconductivity

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 13:14
Scientists have taken a significant step in our understanding of superconductivity by studying the strange quantum events in a unique superconducting material.

Spider's web weaves way to advanced networks and displays

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 22:14
Searching for new ways to develop efficient, flexible networks, physicists discovered the designs of spider webs and leaf venation, refined across thousands of years of evolution, are worthy models for the next generation of optoelectronic applications.

Big data may be fashion industry's next must-have accessory

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 22:14
Big data may be the next new thing to hit the fashion industry's runways, according to a team of researchers.

Switching to spintronics: Electric field switching of ferromagnetism at room temperature

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 21:16
Researchers have used an electric field to reverse the magnetization direction in a multiferroic spintronic device at room temperature, a demonstration that points a new way towards spintronics and smaller, faster and cheaper ways of storing and processing data.

Lens-free microscope can detect cancer at cellular level

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 20:40
A lens-free microscope that can be used to detect the presence of cancer or other cell-level abnormalities with the same accuracy as larger and more expensive optical microscopes, has been developed by researchers. The invention could lead to less expensive and more portable technology for performing common examinations of tissue, blood and other biomedical specimens. It may prove especially useful in remote areas and in cases where large numbers of samples need to be examined quickly.

Contrasting views of kin selection assessed

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 18:14
Researchers have used several different ways of testing Hamilton's rule, the core mathematical formula of kin selection, as an explanation for the evolution of much altruistic behavior in animals. These vary in their realism and their ability to generate predictions. The variety of approaches, as well as different views about what constitutes an explanation, helps explain a divisive debate about the importance of kin selection in evolution. A new criterion of 'causal aptness' could help resolve disputes.

Watch out Internet meanies: Game could soon be over for you

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 16:36
Bullies and mean girls have been around forever but, with the arrival of smartphones and social media, meanness has taken on new forms and dramatically extended its reach. Digital abuse is now so widespread, and such are its dramatic effects on victims, that the American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a stern warning about the risks posed by cyberbullying to adolescents’ mental health. But 'how much do we really know about how to tackle online bullies?,' asks a new study.

Privacy policies good for big business, not so good for consumers

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 16:35
Research suggests effective self regulation has yet to emerge for the majority of businesses whose privacy policies keep them from sharing consumers’ private information, but are not readable by the average consumer.