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Updated: 13 hours 41 min ago

Powerful math creates 3-D shapes from simple sketches

Wed, 08/13/2014 - 17:10
A new graphics system that can easily produce complex 3-D shapes from simple professional sketches will be unveiled by computer scientists. The technology has the potential to dramatically simplify how designers and artists develop new product ideas. Converting an idea into a 3-D model using current commercial tools can be a complicated and painstaking process.

Gearing up to keep women from fleeing IT profession

Wed, 08/13/2014 - 17:09
A new article shows employers and experts where to invest resources to reverse the exodus of women from the IT workforce. Studies show that women are significantly underrepresented in the IT field, and the number of women who've graduated with degrees in computer and information science have plummeted from 37 percent in 1985 to 18 percent in 2011. The failure to "stop the bleeding" stems, in part, from the industry's reliance on an oft-cited, outdated and under-studied research model, said one expert.

Mouth bacteria can change its diet, supercomputers reveal

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 20:38
Mouth bacteria can change their metabolism in disease versus health. The Stampede and Lonestar supercomputers compared gene expression of 160,000 genes in healthy and diseased periodontal communities. Research paves way for biomarkers to predict illness from wide-ranging diseases such as periodontitis, diabetes, and Crohn's disease.

Digital literacy reduces cognitive decline in older adults, experts find

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 20:37
Researchers have found a link between digital literacy and a reduction in cognitive decline, according to a study. The data measures delayed recall from a 10-word-list learning task across 5 separate measurement points. Higher wealth, education and digital literacy improved delayed recall, while people with functional impairment, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, depressive symptoms or no digital literacy showed decline.

Realistic computer graphics: Technology from Germany makes it to Walt Disney

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 16:18
Creating a realistic computer simulation of how light suffuses a room is crucial not just for animated movies like “Toy Story” or “Cars”. Special computing methods should ensure this, but they require great effort. Computer scientists have now developed a novel approach that turned out to be highly promising.

Pioneering online treatment for people with bipolar disorder

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 16:18
The first effective web-based treatment for Bipolar Disorder based on the latest research evidence has been developed by psychologists. 92% of the participants in the trial of the online intervention found the content positive -- and one said it had changed her life. People with Bipolar Disorder have problems getting access to psychological therapy and this online intervention may offer a round the clock solution at a reduced cost.

Drastically reducing number of potential future hip fractures with new tool

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 16:17
A new tool is being developed by experts that automatically searches medical images for early signs of osteoporosis in the spine by identifying fractures there and could help reduce the number of future potentially fatal hip fractures. Scientists intend to develop specialist computer software that can be easily incorporated into radiology departments in hospitals.

Mobile phones come alive with the sound of music

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 16:17
Charging mobile phones with sound, like chants from at football ground, could become a reality, according to scientists. Last year, researchers found that playing pop and rock music improves the performance of solar cells. Developing this research further, a team has now created an energy-harvesting prototype (a nanogenerator) that could be used to charge a mobile phone using everyday background noise – such as traffic, music, and our own voices. The team used the key properties of zinc oxide, a material that when squashed or stretched creates a voltage by converting energy from motion into electrical energy, in the form of nanorods.

Our ancestor's 'leaky' membrane answers big questions in biology

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 16:17
All life on Earth came from one common ancestor -- a single-celled organism -- but what it looked like, how it lived and how it evolved into today’s modern cells is a four billion year old mystery being solved by researchers at using mathematical modelling. Findings suggest for the first time that life's Last Universal Common Ancestor (LUCA) had a 'leaky' membrane, which helps scientists answer two of biology's biggest questions.

Robotic-assisted ultrasound imaging: From trans-Atlantic evaluation to help in day-to-day practice

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 22:02
While in Germany a surgeon used a computer to perform a robot-assisted trans-Atlantic ultrasound examination on a person in Boston. In another study, a scientist showed how a cardiologist’s video e-consultation, coupled with a remote robot-assisted echocardiogram test, dramatically reduces the waiting time for a diagnosis faced by heart failure patients.

Groundbreaking approach to understanding social interaction

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 21:00
Scientists have created the Human Dynamic Clamp to address the difficult problem of studying social interactions in the laboratory. Using state-of-the-art human-machine interface technology, the Human Dynamic Clamp works by having humans interact with a computational model that behaves very much like humans themselves. In simple experiments, the model – on receiving input from human movement – drives an image of a moving hand which is displayed on a video screen.

Helping farmers adapt to changing growing conditions

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 17:22
Spring rains that delayed planting and a cool summer have farmers concerned about whether their corn will reach maturity before the first frost. Two new online decision-making tools available through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Useful to Usable research project will help, according to a state climatologist. Farmers are producing crops under more variable conditions, so these tools can be critical to both food safety and the farmers’ economic survival.

How fast you drive might reveal exactly where you are going

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 16:50
Some drivers are letting auto insurance companies monitor their driving habits in return for a premium discount, but these drivers may not know that the information could reveal where they are driving. Engineers have shown that even without GPS or other location-sensing technology, a driver could reveal where he or she traveled with no more information than a starting location and a steady stream of data that shows how fast the person was driving.

Quantum simulators explained

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 16:46
Everything you ever wanted to know about quantum simulators summed up in a new review. A quantum simulator is a device that actively uses quantum effects to answer questions on model systems. This review outlines various approaches used in quantum simulators.

Customized surface inspection integrated into production process

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 16:46
The quality control of component surfaces is a complex undertaking. Researchers have engineered a high-precision modular inspection system that can be adapted on a customer-specific basis and integrated into the production process.

Pairing old technologies with new for next generation electronic devices

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 01:38
A new method to efficiently generate and control currents based on the magnetic nature of electrons in semi-conducting materials has been developed by researchers, offering a radical way to develop a new generation of electronic devices.

Spectacular 3-D sketching system revolutionizes design interaction and collaboration

Mon, 08/11/2014 - 01:36
Collaborative three-dimensional sketching is now possible thanks to a system known as Hyve-3D. The system is a full scale immersive 3D environment. Users create drawings on hand-held tables. They can then use the tablets to manipulate the sketches to create a 3D design within the space.

Hospitals could face penalties for missing electronic health record deadline

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 20:34
Many of the nation's hospitals in the U.S. struggled to meet a federally mandated electronic health records deadline, and as a result could collectively face millions of dollars in reduced Medicare payments this year, a study shows.

Photo editing algorithm changes weather, seasons automatically in your shots

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 16:40
A computer algorithm enables users to instantly change the weather, time of day, season, or other features in outdoor photos with simple text commands. Machine learning and a clever database make it possible.

Electrons moving in a magnetic field exhibit strange quantum behavior

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 15:07
Researchers have made the first direct observations of free-electron Landau states -— a form of quantized states that electrons adopt when moving through a magnetic field- — and found that the internal rotational dynamics of quantum electrons, or how they move through the field, is surprisingly different from the classical model, and in line with recent quantum-mechanical predictions.