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Sep 14, 2015

Scientists have developed a shark-repelling device for your surfboard

Posted by in category: futurism

Researchers have developed an electronic device that you can attach to your surfboard or wear while swimming to help deter sharks. The aim is to harmlessly mess with the animals’ electroreceptive system, and studies so far have shown that they can prevent more than 90 percent of shark encounters.

Before you all rush off to buy one, let’s get one thing straight: shark attacks are incredibly rare, with on average just 75 being reported worldwide every year. That means you have on average a roughly one in 11.5 million chance of being attacked by a shark (and if you rarely swim more than 25 metres out from the beach, it’s even lower than that) — which is far less than your risk of dying from home repairs or, say, a bicycle-related injury.

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Sep 14, 2015

Elon Musk has asked if he can launch 4000 wifi satellites into space

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, internet, space

Elon Musk has officially requested permission from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to launch a 4000 strong flotilla of satellites into orbit.

Elon Musk’s space company ‘SpaceX’ announced their primary plans in January with the official request coming early last week. If all goes to plan the satellites could be in orbit and the Internet operational within five years.

While satellite internet is not new technology, SpaceX plans to reduce the enormous latency over a space connection by launching the satellites into a low Earth orbit at around 650km. The low orbit and slower speeds mean 4000 satellites are needed to cover the earth, far more than necessary for higher orbit networking.

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Sep 14, 2015

Now arriving: airport control towers with no humans inside

Posted by in category: futurism

Passengers landing at remote Ornskoldsvik Airport in northern Sweden might catch a glimpse of the control tower—likely unaware there is nobody inside.

The dozen commercial planes landing there each day are instead watched by cameras, guided in by controllers viewing the video at another airport 90 miles away.

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Sep 14, 2015

System learns to distinguish words’ phonetic components, without human annotation of training data

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Every language has its own collection of phonemes, or the basic phonetic units from which spoken words are composed. Depending on how you count, English has somewhere between 35 and 45. Knowing a language’s phonemes can make it much easier for automated systems to learn to interpret speech.

In the 2015 volume of Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, MIT researchers describe a new machine-learning system that, like several systems before it, can learn to distinguish . But unlike its predecessors, it can also learn to distinguish lower-level phonetic units, such as syllables and phonemes.

As such, it could aid in the development of speech-processing systems for languages that are not widely spoken and don’t have the benefit of decades of linguistic research on their phonetic systems. It could also help make speech-processing systems more portable, since information about lower-level phonetic units could help iron out distinctions between different speakers’ pronunciations.

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Sep 14, 2015

First ever “photo” of light as particle and a wave

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

One of the most confounding implications of quantum physics is that light can behave as both a particle (photon) and a wave, depending on the nature of the observation. This is called wave-particle duality, and it has been extremely difficult to picture, let alone observe in both stages simultaneously. Now, physicists publishing in Nature Communications report that they have been able to capture a photograph of wave/particle duality ‘in action’, so to speak. This TED video explains the nature of the effect:

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Sep 14, 2015

You’re not irrational, you’re just quantum probabilistic: Researchers explain human decision-making with physics theory

Posted by in categories: neuroscience, quantum physics

The next time someone accuses you of making an irrational decision, just explain that you’re obeying the laws of quantum physics.

A new trend taking shape in not only uses to explain humans’ (sometimes) paradoxical thinking, but may also help researchers resolve certain contradictions among the results of previous psychological studies.

According to Zheng Joyce Wang and others who try to model our decision-making processes mathematically, the equations and axioms that most closely match human behavior may be ones that are rooted in quantum physics.

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Sep 14, 2015

Scientists Hope To Resurrect A Dead Girl Who Wanted To Live Inside A Computer

Posted by in categories: computing, life extension, neuroscience

Kim Suozzi died at age 23 from glioblastoma — a deadly brain tumour.

When she died in 2013, she made sure her fight for survival, albeit an unusual one, would not be forgotten.

She wanted to live forever through a computer and chose to have her brain frozen in the hopes that it may one day be resurrected and transformed into digital code.

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Sep 14, 2015

Extending Galactic Habitable Zone Modeling to Include the Emergence of Intelligent Life — By Morrison Ian S. and Gowanlock Michael G. | Astrobiology

Posted by in categories: alien life, complex systems, physics, quantum physics, science, space travel

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Previous studies of the galactic habitable zone have been concerned with identifying those regions of the Galaxy that may favor the emergence of complex life. A planet is deemed habitable if it meets a set of assumed criteria for supporting the emergence of such complex life. In this work, we extend the assessment of habitability to consider the potential for life to further evolve to the point of intelligence—termed the propensity for the emergence of intelligent life, φI.

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Sep 14, 2015

1st Space Development Network Conference 2016

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, space

The 1st Space Development Network Conference will be held in Bangalore in January, 2016. The motivation of the conference is to invite researchers, eminent scientists, faculty from reputed colleges and students working in the area of Space development and technology to present their research and get valuable feedback from the people attending the conference. The topics of space development network conference are given below:

•Asteroid Mining.

•Space Colonization.

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Sep 14, 2015

Physicists develop key component for terahertz wireless

Posted by in categories: electronics, internet, mobile phones, physics

Terahertz radiation could one day provide the backbone for wireless systems that can deliver data up to one hundred times faster than today’s cellular or Wi-Fi networks. But there remain many technical challenges to be solved before terahertz wireless is ready for prime time.

Researchers from Brown University have taken a major step toward addressing one of those challenges. They’ve developed what they believe to be the first system for multiplexing terahertz waves. Multiplexers are devices that enable separate streams of data to travel through a single medium. It’s the technology that makes it possible for a single cable to carry multiple TV channels or for a fiber optic line to carry thousands of phone calls at the same time.

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